2014 Doctors Manitoba Awards

Dr. Michael West

Dr. Michael West

Dr. West was raised in Winnipeg and graduated from Vincent Massey Collegiate. He attended the University of Manitoba, Faculty of Science, and received his MD from the University of Manitoba. After completion of medical school he trained in Neurosurgery with Dr. Dwight Parkinson. At the end of his formal neurosurgical training, having received a Fellowship in Neurosurgery from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, he was awarded a Medical Research Council Fellowship and pursued a PhD in Physiology with Dr. Victor Havlicek and Dr. Henry Friesen in 1980.

Following this he went to the United States on a McLaughlin Traveling Fellowship, studying brain and pituitary tumor surgery with Dr. Charles Wilson in San Francisco; cerebrovascular surgery with Dr. Charles Drake and Dr. Sydney Peerless in London, Ontario; and pediatric neurosurgery with Drs. Anthony Raimondi and David McClone in Chicago, Illinois. After completing fellowship training, he practiced neurosurgery in Winnipeg at the St. Boniface General Hospital and the Health Sciences Centre from 1981 to 1994, introducing computer-guided stereotactic surgery in 1986.

Dr. West practised Neurosurgery in the USA from 1994 to 2000, and was recruited back to Winnipeg in 2000 from the Cleveland Clinic, as Professor and Head of Neurosurgery. In this role, Dr. West recruited seven neurosurgeons and a neurophysiologist. Each member of the Section has a special area of expertise, contributing to the development of new programs in pediatric neurosurgery, vascular surgery (including endovascular treatment of vascular disorders of the brain and spine), deep brain stimulation for movement disorders, surgical treatment of epilepsy, surgery for cranial nerve disorders, and complex spine surgery, including minimally invasive surgery for spinal disorders.

In 2003, Dr. West introduced the first Gamma Knife in Canada. Since that time the Winnipeg Unit has been used to treat over 2400 patients from Manitoba and across Canada. He is currently working with CancerCare Manitoba in the development of an extra-cranial radiosurgery program. As well, Dr. West has worked with Radiology to develop an advanced neurosurgical operating suite incorporating intraoperative magnetic resonance imaging and digital subtraction angiography; one of seven such facilities in the world.

Dr. West’s main interests are cerebrovascular surgery, brain tumor surgery, skull base surgery, endoscopic skull base surgery, and radiosurgery. Dr. West has won several teaching awards and authored or co-authored over 150 scientific publications and invited lectures. He has been an Examiner in Neurosurgery for the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. Dr. West was a member of the Accreditation Committee of the Royal College and has completed a seven-year term as Chair of the Specialty Committee in Neurosurgery of the Royal College.


Distinguished Service Award

For recognition of services rendered to patients and the community which have enhanced the image of the physician through devotion to the highest ideals of the medical profession and in the promotion of the art and science of medicine through teaching, writing and administration.



Dr. Peter Nickerson

Dr. Peter Nickerson

Dr. Peter Nickerson is receiving well-earned recognition as the Doctors Manitoba Scholastic Award winner.

Dr. Nickerson received his MD degree in 1986 and completed his Internal Medicine training in 1990 at the University of Manitoba. Between 1991 and 1995 Dr. Nickerson pursued a Transplant Research Fellowship at Harvard Medical School under the supervision of Dr. Terry Strom.

Since his return to Manitoba from Harvard in 1995, Dr. Nickerson has excelled as a clinician, teacher and scientist. Dr. Nickerson’s remarkable career has resulted in numerous local, national and international awards that include his admission as Fellow to the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (2012), the Dr. John B. Dossetor Research Award of the Kidney Foundation¬† of Canada (2012), and the American Society of Histocompatibility Immunogenetics Distinguished Service Award (2009).

Dr. Nickerson is currently Professor of Medicine and Immunology, and the Associate Dean (Research) of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Manitoba, in addition to being the Medical Director (Organ Transplantation) for Canadian Blood Services. Since 2009, Dr. Nickerson has held the $4 million Endowed Family Flynn Chair for Transplantation Research in the Department of Medicine at the University of Manitoba.

Dr. Nickerson has more than one hundred peer-reviewed scholarly publications in various aspects of clinical transplantation and transplantation immunobiology. These include cutting edge articles in high impact journals, as well as invited editorials and book chapters. Moreover, Dr. Nickerson currently holds over $20 million in competitive grant funding from the National Institutes of Health and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.

Dr. Nickerson’s scholarly achievements have elevated the status of the renal transplant program at the University of Manitoba to one that has international recognition. He also played a large part in developing new strategic directions for research at the University of Manitoba by developing platforms to support research and in triggering a cultural shift with the research community towards collaborative multidisciplinary research.


Scholastic Award

For Scholarly activity in the health professions (examples of scholarly activity are research, teaching and writing)




Dr. Frank Plummer

Dr. Frank Plummer

Dr. Frank Plummer is regarded internationally as a world-leading HIV/AIDS researcher and specialist in infectious diseases whose work has influenced public health policy in Canada and abroad.

After completing his medical degree and clinical training, Dr. Plummer went to Nairobi in 1981 to study infectious diseases. This one-year fellowship that appeared as an adventure at the time, turned out to be a career move. In 1984, Dr. Plummer returned to Kenya where he spent the next 16 years researching sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS.

In the 1980s and 1990s, Dr. Plummer led the University of Manitoba’s STI/HIV research and training program in Kenya. This is a globally recognized program of excellence and Dr. Plummer has received numerous accolades for this work, nationally and internationally. His studies on HIV epidemiology in Kenya were central to global understanding of the risk factors for HIV transmission and how to prevent its spread. His work has led to the development of other research programs and policies that have saved hundreds of thousands of lives.

Dr. Plummer returned to Canada in 2000 after a national search committee appointed him as head of the new National Microbiology Laboratory (NML). Over the next 13 years, Dr. Plummer recruited the best of the best from around the world to move to Winnipeg and to lead various programs at NML.. It is now widely recognized as one of the outstanding laboratories anywhere in the world. In addition to heading NML, Dr. Plummer also took on the role of Chief Science Advisor of the newly created Public Health Agency of Canada in 2004.

Dr. Plummer has led the Canadian laboratory response to numerous outbreaks including SARS in 2003 and the 2009 H1N1 pandemic influenza outbreak. He also oversaw and managed the monitoring of bio-terrorism threats at the 2010 Winter Olympics and he has led the Global Health Security Action Group Laboratory Network efforts to rapidly identify health security threats, such as bioterrorism and pandemic influenza. Dr. Plummer has a stellar track record of publishing ground breaking research, with over 350 peer-reviewed articles in prominent scientific journals.

Dr. Plummer was presented with the Order of Canada in 2006, Canada’s most prestigious and distinguished civilian honour, for his outstanding contributions to medicine. More recently, he was the recipient of the 2012 Royal Society of Canada McLaughlin Medal, the highest award given by the Society for distinguished achievement in medial sciences in Canada.


Health Administration Award

For contribution to policy and/or in administration of health care.





Mr. David Northcott

Mr. David Northcott

Mr. David Northcott is receiving well-earned recognition as the Doctors Manitoba Health or Safety Award winner.

David Northcott has been the Executive Director of Winnipeg Harvest Food Bank since 1984 with a short break in 2004 to 2007 to visit Africa, run for office, and serve with the University of Winnipeg Institute of Urban Studies and Hospice & Palliative Care Manitoba.

Mr. Northcott is passionately committed to food security and human rights issues. He currently serves on several boards including the Vanier Institute of the Family, Artists in Health Care Manitoba, Ladybug Foundation, Vice-President of the Manitoba Association of Food Banks and a member of the council and board for Food Banks Canada.

Mr. Northcott has also taken another step forward, recognizing that feeding people is not sufficient to deal with poverty. He and the team at Winnipeg Harvest offer training opportunities for safe food handling, warehousing, and food service. Winnipeg Harvest does this through operating a kitchen that serves 200 people a day with a healthy lunch prepared by volunteers who are learning the skills of working in food service and ultimately becoming more employable and self-sufficient. Winnipeg Harvest also trains people in their warehouse, where volunteers learn to sort, handle and store food safely, operate warehouse equipment and enhance their workplace skills.

Previously, he served as Chair of the Canadian Association of Food Banks (Food Banks Canada), Chair of Celebrate Canada (Manitoba Committee), Western Canadian Aviation Museum and was a member of the National Anti-poverty Organization and the National Council of Welfare.

As the first and current Executive Director of the Winnipeg Harvest Food Distribution and Training Centre, Mr. Northcott has worked tirelessly as an advocate for social justice in his community. Winnipeg Harvest is community-based organization committed to providing food to people who struggle to feed themselves and their families. It is dedicated to maximizing public awareness of hunger while working towards long-term solutions to hunger and poverty.

Mr. Northcott has represented his country as an NGO member of Canada’s delegation to the UN’s Second World Food Summit. His advancement of food security and human rights has seen him serve as former Chair of the Canadian Association of Food Banks and involved with many other organizations in his community. He is the co-founder of the national food bank movement in Canada.

He was inducted as a Member of the Order of Canada in May 2012 and Order of Manitoba in 2000.


Health or Safety Award

For contribution toward improving or promoting the health or safety of Manitobans or humanity generally




Dr. Ken Van Ameyde

Dr. Ken Van Ameyde

Dr. Ken Van Ameyde has been awarded the Physician of the Year Award due to his work that has meaningfully touched a long list of physicians and contributed significantly to medical care in Manitoba and beyond.

Dr. Van Ameyde earned his medical degree from the University of Alberta in 1979 before completing residency programs at Memorial University and the University of Manitoba. Dr. Van Ameyde has been a full-time member of the Department of Internal Medicine at the University of Manitoba for some 30 years. During that time he has held numerous administrative and leadership positions including section head of General Internal Medicine, service chief of a Clinical Teaching Unit, associate site director for the WRHA Medicine Program at the Health Sciences Centre and Program Director for the Internal Medicine Core Training Program.

Although Dr. Van Ameyde has served these functions with extreme dedication and demonstrated effective leadership, his most prominent and lasting contribution to the Manitoba medical community and its citizens have been as a consummate teacher and master clinician.

Over the course of his career, Dr. Van Ameyde has been regarded among the elite as a teacher, supervisor and role model for resident trainees and medical students. Dr. Van Ameyde’s value in the field of medical education can be seen in his membership on the Internal Medicine Examination Board for the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada from 1994 to 2008.

In 2005, Dr. Van Ameyde was awarded the prestigious Barry J. Kaufman Award for Teaching Excellence in the Department of Internal Medicine. This award is only given every two years and Dr. Van Ameyde was its first recipient. He has been a finalist for this distinction on several other occasions.

During his career, Dr. Van Ameyde has been a strong advocate of medical outreach for northern and remote communities and has successfully inspired trainees to establish practice outside of Winnipeg.


Physician of the Year

For significant contribution to the practice of medicine and/or to the community by a member of Doctors Manitoba.




Dr. Warren Froese

Dr. Warren Froese

The Dr. Jack Armstrong Humanitarian Award in 2013 recognizes the many years of selfless humanitarian service that Dr. Warren Froese has provided.

Dr. Warren Froese is a specialist in Sports Medicine, Knee and Shoulder Surgery. He completed medical school and orthopedic surgery at the University of Manitoba and a Knee and Shoulder Fellowship at the University of Western Ontario. Dr. Froese has worked in Manitoba since 1994 and is based out of the Pan Am Clinic and Concordia General Hospital.

Dr. Froese has been a member of the Manitoba Chambers of Commerce President’s Advisory Council on Health since the beginning of October 2011 and is well versed in public policy matters pertaining to health care.

Dr. Froese has been a member for many years of the International Mennonite Health Association, which is a non-profit organization that was created to assist in the funding, development and ongoing operational support of health care facilities and organizations in the under-serviced regions of the developing world. Dr. Froese’s work includes being a member of the IMHA as well as involvement specifically in the Bon Berger project in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The International Mennonite Health Association has been active for over 10 years. The goal of the Bon Berger project is to support local physicians working in the Camp Luka area of Kinshasa, DRC to develop, build and sustain their own medical centre. The initiative and vision of the project belongs to the local physicians, led by Dr Delphin Kapasa and Dr. Pierre.

Manitoba physicians, Dr. Warren Froese and Dr. David Huebert had previously spent time in the DRC and were interested in supporting medical work in the DRC. They together with other Winnipeg and North American based physicians agreed to help support the local physicians in developing a sustainable medical clinic. After an initial visit they recruited other physicians from Manitoba to help support the clinic, known as the Bon Berger Medical Clinic.

The Manitoba physicians have committed time to mentor and teach the local physician community in the DRC, and helped to gather considerable financial support for the project which contributed to the clinic expanding from a temporary building to a 2 floor clinic/ hospital with a small lab, pharmacy, outpatient area and capacity for 24 hospital beds. There is also an operating theatre for simple procedures. The clinic operates in a self sustaining fashion, and employs 20 people. It is of some significance that this clinic functions independently under the leadership of Dr’s Kapasa and Pierre, without any expatriot on the ground leadership.

Over the past 10 years, Dr. Froese, Dr David Huebert, Dr. Donald Duerksen, along with other Manitoba physicians, continue to contribute to the Bon Berger medical clinic and the general medical community of the DRC.



Jack Armstrong Humanitarian Award

For outstanding contributions by a member or former member of Doctors Manitoba in the service of humanity either within Canada or abroad