She’s excited and nervous. But, mostly, she’s honoured to be in such an esteemed group of peers. Kim Raine is the most recent inductee to Fellowship in the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences (CAHS) from the School of Public Health, joining colleagues such as Doug Wilson and Walter Kipp.
Raine’s fellowship in the CAHS is based upon what she will bring to the table. It is a glowing tribute to her years dedicated to putting health promotion on the radar—municipally, provincially, nationally and internationally.
CAHS recognizes a broad range of health sciences from medicine to allied health sciences; and from science to social science and population health. Fellows are recognized for their leadership, creativity, distinctive competencies and commitment to advance academic health sciences.
Interim Dean Lory Laing also recognizes the significance of this honour, and of Raine’s contribution to health promotion. “Her program of research has received national and international recognition in the fields of public health, nutrition and health promotion,” says Laing. “Her academic career has been built upon a foundation of integrating research, practice and policy. She is certainly deserving of this honour.”
Through her induction into CAHS, Raine sees a responsibility to take her research and advocacy work in Alberta and bring it forward on a national stage. “You learn from what you do—and from this I’ll learn a lot,” says Raine.
She sees plenty of opportunity to learn from other fellows at CAHS, and be able to apply what she learns to her research, teaching and service. “When you’re confronted with different ways of doing things, it’s really encouraging and energizing.”
Raine believes health promotion is often overlooked because results aren’t easily quantifiable or immediate, and her vision is that health promotion will become more highly valued and appropriately funded. She sees her role as generating and synthesizing evidence to emphasize the long-term gain in the health promotion process.
“Anyone who works in health promotion has to be very patient,” says Raine. “It is a long-term investment.” But, she is seeing commitment to change and to new ways of working to promote health.
“I see the ability to implement concrete health promotion strategies that are grounded in evidence from research. Our governments are starting to sit up and take notice,” says Raine.
Raine sees an important opportunity for the School of Public Health to leverage its engaged research and community partnerships to promote and protect the health of Canadians. As part of her new role with CAHS, she hopes to influence the knowledge translation side of public health and health promotion, to pursue more partnerships and opportunities to foster health promoting social change.
With such opportunity comes the responsibility to negotiate and collectively move Canada towards a healthier future.