Luna is the Research and Evaluation Coordinator for the Rural Mental Health Project. They are an experienced researcher who has conducted multiple research projects examining the marketplace, labour, and race through an intersectional lens. Professionally, they have 6 years of experience working in academic and non-profit sectors. Luna is invested in community-wellbeing, grassroots approaches, and equitable practices. They hold a Master’s in Science, specializing in Marketing, and a BA in Sociology.
Scott, the panel's resident millennial, is a communications professional with a unique career path. Having graduated with distinction from MacEwan University's Public Relations program in 2022, his work experience prior to communications was entirely blue collar; from construction to equipment operation with plenty of stops in between, he has experienced the gamut of "working with your hands" jobs in Alberta.Scott has experience in content curation, podcasting, social media management, and internal and external communications, and has typically incorporated these skills into his passion for advocacy. He spent his pre-graduation practicum working in communications for CMHA AB helping to tell the story of mental health in Alberta.
Amber is a 3rd generation public health nurse; starting her career in the area of street nursing. Here she worked with marginalized populations for numerous years, providing education, medical intervention, harm reduction services, and mentorship to practicum students of varying professional designations.
It was during this early phase of Ambers career that the theoretical awareness of self-care met the everyday realities of vicarious trauma from frontline nursing. Caregiver burnout set in, and a decision was made to shift her work to education in chronic disease management.
Ironically, it was during this transition to chronic disease management that she was diagnosed with retinitis pigmentosa, an inherit genetic condition causing her to be legally blind.
With the loss of vision, Amber relinquished the privilege of driving, and re-learned the skill of accessing public transit. It was during this time she began the exhaustive journey of addressing daily intrusive questions related to her disability, along with boundary setting related to her guide dog. These daily interactions adversely impacted her mental health and ability to show up in public spaces.
Conversely, this shift from an able-bodied experience, to one of disability helped Amber gain a deeper understanding of the systemic barriers faced by her patients, and has been the spring board her passion in educating others regarding diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Amber brings a sense of authenticity, mentorship, advocacy, and empowerment to patients, the public, and workplace relating to health promotion – from a disability lens.
Amber is currently in the process of seeking an employment opportunity with an organization who tows the line related to equity in the workplace.
Safety Steve Sharp is a Health & Safety professional pursuing his passion for helping people in the mid-stream oil and gas industry. As a Senior Psychological Health & Safety Specialist, Steve operates safety management systems for private sector companies for over 15 years. His talent is gaining and maintaining certified programs that are built around an industry recognized, established standard. His goal is to meet and exceed these established high standards. As a committed lifelong learner, Steve has attained several professional designations and awards. These include the National Construction Safety Officer designation, Certificate in Occupational Health & Safety, Canadian Registered Safety Professional designation and most recently Certified Psychological Health and Safety Advisor designation through the CMHA.
Steve is currently working on a post-secondary Certificate in Psychological Safety. Steve is passionate about transferring his knowledge and insight to others through public speaking. Please join him in his mission to help keep people safe, no matter what type of hazard they encounter.
Michael Green (he/him) was born in a small coastal town in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia. Growing up isolated from supports and resources, he has a deep understanding of the value of supporting mental health. His career has spanned provinces and industries, a journey from hospitality and sales to management and advocacy, bringing him now to the Canadian Mental Health Association Alberta Division where he proudly serves Youth Hubs Alberta as Learning and Resource Coordinator. At this point in the bio, Michael would like to remind you to take a moment for yourself to breathe. And also hydrate, he always forgets so he wants to remind you, too.
An Amiskwaciwâskahikan (Edmonton) resident for a decade, Michael has spent much of that time supporting and leading grassroots advocacy work across rural Alberta with fearless whimsy. His work in 2SLGBTQ+ education and mental health support taught him the revolutionary power of sustaining hope through connection, storytelling, and empathy. When he’s not pondering the perfect metaphor to describe a frustratingly complex topic, you can find Michael listening to astoundingly niche science podcasts or walking his baby-faced rescue dog, Davey, in the beautiful river valley.