Dr. Jason Berman re-appointed to lead research at CHEO


Ottawa, Ontario — Tuesday April 30, 2024

On behalf of CHEO and the CHEO Research Institute (CHEO RI), we are pleased to announce that Dr. Jason Berman has been re-appointed as the CEO and Scientific Director of the CHEO RI and Vice-President of Research at CHEO.

Dr. Berman first joined CHEO in August 2019 and launched a process to develop CHEO’s integrated Research Strategic Plan, Oh! The Places We’ll Explore! 2024, six months later.

One month following that launch, the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Dr. Berman quickly pivoted to mobilize and redeploy staff at the RI to help CHEO, continue important research within pandemic restrictions, and prioritize new opportunities for groundbreaking research to support Canada’s pandemic response.

Under his leadership, the RI initiated what became globally renowned wastewater surveillance research in partnership with uOttawa, undertook systematic reviews to determine the most effective ways to decontaminate limited personal protective equipment (PPE), and served as a Canadian site to inform Health Canada’s approval of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine for young children and infants.

As more vaccines became available and schools were once again returning to in-person classes in January 2022, Dr. Berman spearheaded four priority COVID-19 vaccination clinics for education workers and support staff to aid a safer return to in-person learning.

Dr. Berman undertook a functional realignment of the RI in April 2023 to address strategic priorities, including innovation and the integration of research across CHEO. This included establishing a new leadership team, making investments in technology and AI infrastructure and resources, and the appointment of Dr. Dhenuka Radhakrishnan as the RI’s first ever Chief Scientific Officer.

Dr. Berman also led the creation of seven new research teams and five research cores, including the Innovation Core, which was awarded funding from the FedDev Ontario to establish the 8-80 Collaborative with Bruyère. Working closely with the CHEO Foundation and the Vice-President of Mental Health and Addictions, Dr. Berman served as co-executive sponsor of the first-of-its-kind Precision Child and Youth Mental Health initiative at CHEO in collaboration with SickKids in Toronto.

In addition to his role at CHEO, Dr. Berman is a Professor of Pediatrics and Cellular and Molecular Medicine at the University of Ottawa. His work as a pediatric hematologist/oncologist and clinician scientist includes international recognition for pioneering research using zebrafish to study childhood cancers and rare inherited diseases and leading clinical trials in the unique leukemia affecting children with Down syndrome.  He continues to oversee an active Canadian Institutes of Health Research funded translational research laboratory and serves as an attending physician on the inpatient pediatric oncology service at CHEO.

Dr. Berman is also the current Chair of the Board of Directors of the national Maternal Infant Child and Youth Research Network, as well as a member of the boards of the Ontario Institute of Cancer Research, the Leukemia Lymphoma Society of Canada, and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research Institute of Cancer Research.

We are very grateful to see Dr. Berman continue at CHEO for a second five-year term.


Alex Munter                                                Christopher Dyrda
President and CEO, CHEO                Board Chair, CHEO Research Institute

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