The inaugural Dr. Mark Wainberg Award for Outstanding HIV Research, named in honour of the late Dr. Mark Wainberg (pictured), CANFAR Scientific Advisory Committee Co-Chair, is awarded to Dr. Mathieu Maheu-Giroux of McGill University.

There are some anniversaries you celebrate, and others you observe with reverence. The latter was the case on Tuesday, August 22, 2017 when an group of Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research (CANFAR) donors, supporters and volunteers assembled to discuss the progress made since CANFAR was founded in 1987, as well as what remains to be accomplished in the years ahead. The evening was an opportunity to introduce new volunteers, and confirm plans for key fundraising activities in the year ahead.

CANFAR Board Chair Andrew Pringle, CM, welcomed those in attendance, with particular appreciation being extended to CANFAR’s founding Executive Director Roger Bullock, and long-standing CANFAR supporter (and one of the great minds behind what is now referred to as Bloor Street Entertains), Catherine Nugent as well as HIV activist Ron Rosenes.

Mr. Pringle reflected on his long service to CANFAR, and the early days with Bluma Appel – who was a fundraising catalyst for AIDS research in Canada. While Mr. Pringle spoke passionately about the countless individuals who have given so generously to CANFAR over the past three decades, he challenged those in attendance to be part of “putting CANFAR out of business”.  Under Mr. Pringle’s direction, the CANFAR Board of Directors is committed to that very aspiration. Formal and ad-hoc committees within the board are tackling the most pressing issues facing CANFAR (research agenda, communications imperatives, expanding youth HIV awareness, and funding the best possible research) with the goal of ensuring that CANFAR’s resources have the greatest impact on reducing the number of Canadians contracting HIV while funding research that might ultimately find a cure.

At the core of our mission is research, and Dr. Stanley Read, Chair of CANFAR’s Scientific Advisory Committee, was on hand to speak about the outstanding quality of the 2017 funded researchers who will be sharing more than $700,000 to advance their respective research projects. Dr. Read also announced the creation of the Dr. Mark Wainberg Award for Outstanding HIV Research, to be presented annually to the Canadian researcher whose proposal receives the highest ranking through the CANFAR proposal review process. The inaugural winner of the Dr. Mark Wainberg Award for Outstanding HIV Research is Dr. Mathieu Maheu-Giroux of McGill University.

Following Dr. Read’s announcement, I had the pleasure of introducing several of CANFAR’s volunteer Co-Chairs for our upcoming fundraising events, as well as welcoming Nada Ristich, Director of Corporate Donations at BMO and announcing their five year sponsorship of Bloor Street Entertains.

With the support of BMO, other corporate partners and our numerous donors we will continue to fund the best possible HIV research in the country, and move closer to eradicating HIV and ultimately “putting CANFAR out of business.”

Your support of CANFAR, is greatly appreciated – and we look forward to the day when we can truly celebrate the end of HIV and AIDS in Canada, and around the world. Until then, thank you for being a part of this profoundly important pursuit.


CANFAR Board Chair
Andrew Pringle, CM

Winner of the Dr. Mark Wainberg Award for Outstanding HIV Research
Dr. Mathieu Maheu-Giroux


Guests at CANFAR’s 30   th Anniversary celebration included: (from left to right) philanthropist Catherine Nugent, CANFAR’s Chair of Scientific Advisory Committee, Dr. Stanley Read, and RBC’s Peter Partridge, a long-standing donor to CANFAR.

Story by Kyle J. Winters, CANFAR President & COO