Keynote Speakers

Mary Jo Leddy

Dr. Mary Jo Leddy is a Canadian writer, speaker, theologian, and social activist. She is the founder of Romero House Community for Refugess and currently serves as Director. She is also an Adjunct Professor at Regis College, University of Toronto.
Mary Jo is an active member of the Ontario Sanctuary Coalition and PEN Canada. She is active in various human rights and peace groups.

A frequent radio and TV commentator, Mary Jo has lectured on various topics nationally and internationally. She is the author of several books, including, The Other Face of God: When the Stranger Calls Us Home, and Radical Gratitude.

Mary Jo is the recipient of numerous academic awards and scholarships including: The Governor General’s Bronze Medal, the Canada Council Doctoral Fellowship, the Canadian University Presidents’ Award “Outstanding Young Woman of 1978”, The Ontario Citizenship Award (1993), the Order of Canada (1996)Gunther Plaut Humanitarian Award (2011), and several honourary doctorates.

Dr. Jean Chamberlain Froese

Dr. Jean Chamberlain Froese is an internationally recognized expert in women’s health and is a member of the Order of Canada.
She has volunteered in some of the world’s poorest countries to make childbirth a safer experience. She is the founder and Executive Director of Save the Mothers, an organization dedicated to saving some of the 287,000 women who die in childbirth every year. She is a committed Christian and spends eight months of the year in Uganda and four months in Canada. She is an Associate Professor in Obstetrics and Gynecology at McMaster University and is an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Waterloo.

She has received countless awards, including an International Community Service Award from the Federation of International Obstetricians/Gynecologists, the Teasdale-Corti Humanitarian Award from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, and a Doctor of Laws honoris causa from the University of Waterloo.

She is the author of Where Have All the Mothers Gone and is co-editor of the 2014 book, Women’s Health in the Majority World: Issues and Initiatives.