Executive Committee


Deborah Zornes

Royal Roads University

I have, and am, enjoying serving on CARA’s board – it allows me to give back to the organization, provides an opportunity to develop my leadership skills, and connects me on a much closer level to our members and to our funding partners.

Dominique Michaud

Dominique Michaud is Director, Research Development in the Office of Research of Concordia University in Montreal. Dominique has been active in research administration for over 25 years with prior appointments first as a research coordinator and then as a research advisor in humanities and social sciences at Université du Québec à Montréal before taking position at Concordia in 2012. She is a Past President of ADARUQ, the Québec Association of University Research Administrators, and is currently serving a mandate as Member-at-Large on the CARA Executive Board.

Angela Zeno

York  University 

Angela Zeno is a long-time leader in CARA’s finance community and has been recognized for her achievements in welcoming new colleagues to CARA, co-developing conferences workshops for fellow finance experts, and presenting research finance webinars to our membership. Angela is a networking catalyst among research finance professionals and she has helped created a collegial, dynamic community of her peers. 

The Executive Board Terms of Reference are available here.


Members at Large


Rachel Brown

Rachel has been the Research Grants & Contracts Officer at Niagara College for more than 11 years, which has allowed for being a witness to the unprecedented growth of College Research Offices throughout Canada, while being an integral part of the growth of the award-winning research office at Niagara College. Rachel is passionate about continual improvement and advancement opportunities. She is a long-time CARA volunteer who has been active in the increased profile of Colleges within the CARA organization. As an active member with CARA since 2011, she is committed to advancing opportunities for members from Colleges, Institutions, and Polytechnics.

Mike Folinas

Mike Folinas is the Research Funding Manager for the Natural Sciences and Engineering unit with the Agency and Foundation Funding team in Research Services Office (RSO) at the University of Toronto.  Mike is an alumnus of the University of Toronto with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biological Sciences. He has worked in a variety of roles with the UofT since 2003 before eventually joining the RSO, first with the Institutional Initiatives unit before taking on the Research Funding Manager role where he oversees a team of 2 others managing the University’s NSERC funding programs along with a range of other opportunities including the Canadian Space Agency, CFAR and Ontario Ministry of Transportation funding. Mike currently volunteers with the CARA Connection and is responsible for the “Recommend a Resource”, “Question of the Month” sections and is avidly involved in advertising for the newsletter. Mike is a keen traveler, golfer, hockey player, and skier.

Lauren Gogo

Lauren Gogo is currently the Manager of Research Contracts at Hamilton Health Sciences Corporation.  She is responsible for reviewing and negotiating clinical research contracts and providing direction to a team of contract negotiators, as well as focusing on strategic and policy projects involving research.  Prior to joining HHSC, Lauren was a Contracts Officer at the University of Toronto where she negotiated industry and government agreements in the Biomedical and Life Sciences Sector.  She is well versed in negotiating intellectual property terms and worked closely with the commercialization team at U of T on agreements both pre- and post-invention.  She was also a Research Business Analyst at St. Michael's Hospital in Toronto, and negotiated many clinical trial agreements as well as participated on the research ethics board to answer any contract-related questions. Lauren has a Masters in Biomedical Technology and is an active member of the Canadian Association of Research Administrators (CARA) where she previously served as the coordinating editor of the newsletter, the CARA Connection, for almost two years.  Lauren has contributed articles to the CARA Connection and upcoming blog, presented webinars, and served as the CARA translation coordinator, ensuring that pieces such as articles for the newsletter, CARA bylaws, and webinar information are translated by volunteers.  She has also presented workshops and sessions at CARA National.

Katie Porter

Hamilton Health Sciences

Katie Porter is Director of Research Administration at Hamilton Health Sciences, Canada’s second-largest hospital network.  Her portfolio includes Ethics, Research Development, Human Resources, Research Contracts, Business Development, Research Infrastructure as well as the HHS Research Insurance Corporation. She holds an Executive MBA from the Ivey School of Business at Western University and is also a regular lecturer at McMaster University. Her book Steer Your Career is used as a textbook at the University of South Central Florida’s Master of Research Administration degree. Her contributions to the research administration profession have been recognized with awards from Canadian Association of Research Administrators, the Society of Research Administrators International, and, most recently, the Association of Research Managers and Administrators in the United Kingdom awarded her the Outstanding Contribution to Research Management and Administration Award at their annual conference in Birmingham, UK.

Danielle Puddicombe

Danielle Puddicombe is the Research Finance and Operations Coordinator at Red River College with over 14 years of experience in applied research administration.  She is responsible for the management and oversight of all operating and financial aspects of the research department, such as financial tracking and reporting;  acting as the key contact with funding bodies regarding financial and administrative matters; leading various administrative management processes and activities; managing the research operations team; and engaging in quality and process improvement activities. Danielle has been a member of CARA since 2005, has co-lead the College SIG group since 2017, and is an active member within the conference committee. She has actively engaged with research administrators across Canada, providing guidance and insight on the role research administrators have within the College setting; as well as increasing the awareness within the association of the impact that Colleges have in the applied research industry and the importance to have more representation of Colleges within CARA. Her goals for her term on the Executive is to continue to highlight the important role that Canada’s Colleges, Polytechnics and Institutions bring to the applied research table and champion for the growth of the Colleges/Polytechnics membership and engagement within CARA.

Amanda Sawlor

University of Guelph

Amanda is the Director, Research Financial Services at the University of Guelph. Amanda brings over 15 years' experience working in Research Administration related to a variety of areas: from research assistant as a graduate student to pre and post-award functions within a not for profit organization, and in both small and medium-sized universities. As an approachable professional whose philosophy is that in order to have a productive team there needs to be a spirit of collaboration, positive energy and lots of enthusiasm, Amanda has presented conference sessions and webinars and has been an active member of CARA for over 10 years. She is also the past Finance SIG Lead and is always willing to share experiences with other Research Administrators.

Lorna Very

Lorna Very is the Director, Grants, Awards and Ethics in Research Services at the University of Calgary.  Lorna oversees the management of external and internal research grants, prizes and awards, and the research ethics and compliance unit.  Lorna has been with Research Services since 1989 and held several positions both within Research Services and the Office of the Vice-President (Research).  

Agency Liaison Representatives


Adele Savoie


Adèle Savoie is the Director or Programs Planning and Operations at the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) and is responsible for providing a range of services that support program and competition management.  She has worked at SSHRC since the fall of 1998 and has acquired broad experience in program management and delivery, corporate governance, program design and policy. In addition, Adèle has served as the SSHRC liaison with CARA for a number of years.

Jas Michalski


Jas Michalski has been in a leadership role within NSERC's Corporate Secretariat since 2014 working on continuous process improvement, quality assurance and the furtherance of Tri-Agency (NSERC, SSHRC and CIHR) harmonization.  Prior to joining NSERC Jas worked at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities as Development Manager for the Green Municipal Fund where he managed the eligibility criteria, funding limits and the competitive selection process for capital projects and developed reporting metrics.  Jas holds a BSc from Queen’s University and is a Registered Professional Biologist.  

Valérie Laflamme


Valérie Laflamme is Associate Vice-President for the Tri-Agency Institutional Programs at the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). She has been at SSHRC since 2012, first as a manager, and then as a Director for the scholarships and fellowships programs and the Impact Awards. She integrated the public service through the Recruitment of Policy Leaders Program. Before moving back to Canada from France, she was a maître de conférences in sociology and demography at the Université de Lille, a researcher with the Institut national d’études démographiques and a municipal councilor (Tourcoing, France). Valérie has a PhD in demography and social sciences from the École des hautes études en sciences sociales (France), and has received fellowships from both SSHRC and the Fonds de recherche du Québec. Her own research has focused on housing, urban policies, and the social and demographic history of urban families.  

Michele Beaudry