CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwired - Sept. 18, 2014) - The Alberta Medical Association (AMA) will install its president for 2014-15 on Saturday, September 20, during its Annual General Meeting (AGM) and Representative Forum (RF) at the Hyatt Regency in Calgary. The AMA president serves a one-year term, in addition to one year each as president-elect and immediate past president.

Dr. Richard G.R. Johnston will officially assume the role of AMA president at the end of the Representative Forum meeting on Saturday afternoon. Dr. Johnston, an Edmonton-based intensivist, is a clinical professor in the Faculty of Medicine and Dentistry's Department of Anaesthesiology and Division of Critical Care at the University of Alberta. He is also an attending staff member in adult intensive care at the Royal Alexandra Hospital in Edmonton. His awards include the Mewburn Memorial Gold Medal in Surgery, the University of Alberta Undergraduate Prize, the Allan Coates Rankin Prize in Bacteriology and the Sam Fefferman Memorial Gold Medal in Honors Physics.

Dr. Johnston has been actively involved with the AMA for many years and chaired the AMA's Negotiating Committee for 19 years. He has also served on the Government Affairs Committee and the Finance Committee, and is currently a member of the Board of Directors and Executive Committee.

During the AGM, current AMA President Dr. Allan S. Garbutt will reflect on some of the highlights of his year as president and comment on the events and issues that have defined his term.

Dr. Garbutt will also officially welcome the Canadian Medical Association's (CMA's) 147th President, Dr. Christopher Simpson to Alberta. Dr. Simpson became CMA president in August at the CMA's Annual General Meeting, held this year in Ottawa.

At the Lunch with the CMA President on Saturday, Dr. Simpson will officially install Dr. Johnston as the AMA president, address RF delegates and present the CMA Honorary Membership awards to Alberta physicians.

Dr. Simpson was born in Moncton in 1967 and raised in Nackawic, a small pulp mill town of 1,000 people in western New Brunswick. He received his medical degree from Dalhousie University in Halifax in 1992. He subsequently completed internal medicine and cardiology training at Queen's University in Kingston, and then a Heart and Stroke Foundation Clinical and Research Fellowship in Cardiac Electrophysiology at the University of Western Ontario, under the supervision of Dr. George Klein.

After returning to Kingston in 1999, he founded the Heart Rhythm Program at Kingston General Hospital. Currently, he is professor of medicine and chief of cardiology at Queen's University, as well as medical director of the Cardiac Program at Kingston General Hospital/Hotel Dieu Hospital. Dr. Simpson's primary non-clinical professional interest is health policy - particularly access to care, wait times and medical fitness to drive. In addition to serving as the chair of the Wait Time Alliance - a federation of 14 medical specialty societies and the CMA - he is the lead for the Southeast (Ontario) Local Health Integration Network Cardiovascular Roadmap Project, which developed a regional model of integrated cardiovascular care for southeastern Ontario. He also serves on the executive of the Canadian Cardiovascular Society (member-at-large), on the Cardiac Care Network of Ontario board of directors and is an American College of Cardiology governor.

The Representative Forum is the governing body of the AMA. It includes representatives of all sectors of the profession - specialty sections, zones, students, residents, past presidents and deans of medicine. The RF meets at least twice a year to establish policy and set direction.

Contact Information:

For more information, or to request an interview:
Alberta Medical Association
Shannon Rupnarain
Assistant Executive Director, Public Affairs
Cell: 780.907.9003