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Dr. Deborah O'Connor

Professor, Department of Nutritional Sciences, University of Toronto


Dr. O'Connor completed her B.A.Sc. at the University of Guelph and her M.Sc. and PhD in Nutritional Sciences at the University of Illinois. She completed her clinical training at Kingston General Hospital. Prior to arriving in Toronto in 2000, Debbie was an Associate Professor in the Division of Applied Human Nutrition at the University of Guelph and then at Ohio State University and led the Premature Infant Nutrition group at Abbott Laboratories in Ohio where she developed one of the first human milk nutrient fortifiers. Debbie served as the Director of Clinical Dietetics and Breastfeeding Support at The Hospital for Sick Children from 2000 to 2012 and then as Associate Chief of Academic and Professional Practice until 2013. She is currently a full professor in the Department of Nutritional Sciences at the University of Toronto and a Senior Associate Scientist at The Hospital for Sick Children. Debbie leads Canadian Institutes of Health Research(CIHR) and Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)-funded research programs which include evaluation of strategies to optimize the use of human milk for vulnerable infants. Dr. O,Connor serves as a co-chair of the Advisory Committee for the Rogers Hixon Ontario Human Donor Milk Bank and is a councilor for the International Society for Research on Human Milk and Lactation. She currently serves on the US-Canada Governments Joint Dietary Reference Intake Working Group on Chronic Disease Endpoints and is co-chairing the Canadian Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Committee to develop national female nutrition guidelines.


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