Announcing the Appointments of the Program Director and Academic Co-Directors, Academic Leadership Development Program

June 15, 2022

A message from Moura Quayle, Vice-Provost and Associate Vice-President, Academic Affairs and Adam Charania, Associate Vice-President, Human Resources (Strategic Advisory Partnerships)

As co-sponsors of UBC’s Academic Leadership Development Program (ALDP), we are very pleased to announce the appointments of the new Program Director and Academic Co-Directors.

On June 27, 2022, Dr. Maryam Nabavi will begin her appointment as the ALDP Program Director. Maryam is a first-generation Iranian settler who lives in the borderlands of identity and belonging. She brings 15+ years of experience in collaborative and strategic change processes toward building organizational capacity for leaders. Since 2017, Maryam has worked with the Equity & Inclusion Office as a Staff and Faculty Strategist, where she has successfully shepherded numerous initiatives situated at the nexus of staff and faculty development, leadership and equity. Some highlights of her work include the development of the Equity and Inclusion Scholars program; IBPOC Connections: Staff and Faculty; and, most recently, serving as Chair of the staff committee of the Anti-racism and Inclusive Excellence Taskforce.

On July 1, 2022, Dr. Naznin Virji-Babul and Dr. Tom Scholte will join ALDP as the Academic Co-Directors.

Naznin is a Neuroscientist and Associate Professor in the Department of Physical Therapy, Faculty of Medicine. She is also an Associate member of the Institute of Computing, Information and Cognitive Systems and a team member of the Designing for People research cluster. She was appointed as Senior Advisor to the Provost on Women and Gender-Diverse faculty in 2020. She has been working on several initiatives since that time including: leading a faculty survey on the impact of COVID-19; a leadership program for early career researchers/faculty; and a toolkit for increasing diversity in keynote speakers at scientific conferences.

Tom is a Professor in the Department of Theatre and Film. He has spent the last 5 years as Faculty Lead of Conflict Theatre at UBC. A regular contributor to the ALDP program, Tom uses Applied Theatre to help build capacity for authentic and productive conflict engagement across campus. This work has been carried out in close collaboration with the UBC Office of Equity and Inclusion. In addition to serving as Acting Head for his department in the early days of the pandemic, Tom has served as the Chair of the Faculty of Arts Curriculum Committee and as a member of the Dean of Arts Committee on Promotion and Tenure; the Interdisciplinary Studies Graduate Program Advisory Committee; and the Bachelor of Media Arts Steering Committee.

In their new roles, Maryam, Naznin, and Tom will work closely with Olivia Sperry (ALDP Program Manager) and the planning committee to ensure the ALDP program continues to support, strengthen and expand the knowledge and capacity of new academic leaders at UBC.

As Maryam, Naznin and Tom step into these roles, we extend our thanks and gratitude for the enormous contributions of Dr. Beth Haverkamp, Dr. Ian Scott (Academic Co-Directors) and Dee Dee Sung (Program Director) have made to ALDP. We appreciate their steadfast leadership of the program, especially during these past two challenging years. We wish them all the best going forward.

Congratulations Maryam, Naznin and Tom.

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