Board of Directors
Cal Crocker, B. Comm, CPA, CMA, CHE and ICD.D
Chair of the Board
Calvin (Cal) Crocker is Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer at the Royal Ottawa Health Care Group.
Cal has 35 plus years of experience in Healthcare Leadership in Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Ontario.
He was a member of 1st Regional Leadership Teams in St. John’s, Newfoundland and Halifax, Nova Scotia when the government introduced Regional Health Authorities in both Provinces. Cal has always been an advocate for operating within resources and being financially viable. He was recruited to both QEII in Halifax and The Royal Ottawa Health Care Group in Ottawa due to financial challenges at both organizations.
Cal has been a strong advocate for mental health over his career, starting with his first health care position at the Waterford Hospital in St. John’s, Newfoundland and now at the Royal. He is a past President of CMHA National Offices. He has served on the boards of health associations and provincial pension plans.
Alice B. Aiken, CD, PhD, MSc, BScPT, BSc, ICD.D
Dr. Alice Aiken is Vice-President Research & Innovation at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada. She is a full Professor in the Faculty of Health whose research focuses on health systems transformation and evidence-informed policy making, with a focus on military and Veteran health. Dr. Aiken is currently the interim Chair of the Governing Council of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). She is elected to the College of New Scholars of the Royal Society of Canada. She holds her ICD.D designation from the Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD).
She was formerly the Dean of the Faculty of Health at Dalhousie. She started her academic career at Queen’s University where she founded and was the first Scientific Director of the Canadian Institute for Military and Veteran Health Research, a unique consortium of over 48 Canadian and 13 international universities dedicated to researching the health needs of military personnel, Veterans and their families.
She received her PhD and Master from Queen’s University, Canada, her Physical Therapy degree from Dalhousie University, and a BSc in Kinesiology from the University of Ottawa. She also proudly served in the Canadian Armed Forces for 14 years, first as a ship’s navigator in the Royal Canadian Navy, then as a physiotherapist.
In recognition of her research leadership in military health, she is currently the Honorary Captain (Navy) for Canadian Forces Health Services Atlantic, and a Dame of the Order of St George. She has also received a Distinguished Alumni Award from Queen’s University, the Minister of Veterans Affairs Commendation, the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal, and the Chapel of the Four Chaplains Legion of Honor Bronze Medallion (USA).
Joanne Bezzubetz, President & CEO The Royal
Joanne Bezzubetz, PhD was appointed as the new President and CEO of The Royal by the Board of Trustees in June 2018. She joined The Royal in 2013 as the Vice President of Patient Care Services overseeing the delivery of specialized care across The Royal’s three campuses serving individuals from 16 years of age to the elderly with complex mental health and addiction needs and four operational stress injury clinics for veterans, soldiers and the RCMP.
Joanne has served as Co-chair of the Ottawa Suicide Prevention Network to make Ottawa a suicidesafer community, bringing together hospitals, community agencies, police, schools, colleges, universities and youth advocates to better coordinate regional suicide prevention efforts and save lives. Joanne’s healthcare leadership spans over 30 years leading organizations across Canada, bringing a wealth of experience, knowledge and innovative and evidence-based practices in mental health and addictions. She has served as the Executive Director of Community Health Services for Vancouver and Director of Mental Health and Addictions for the Vancouver Coastal Health Authority. She has also played a critical role in leading the development of care for Northern populations in British Columbia. Joanne has a deep appreciation for culture-based care and was successful in creating much needed services as the Executive Director of the Cree Board of Health and Social Services and as Executive Director for the Department of Health and Social Services in Nunavut.
Joanne is also known for her innovative capacity-building model of addiction services and community living in Northern Ontario. Joanne holds a PhD in Applied Management and Decision Sciences from Walden University, an MBA from Athabasca University. She is a Certified Health Executive with the Canadian College of Health Service Executives. As a triathlete, Joanne is an ardent advocate of physical activity and mental health and the Shoppers Run for Women supporting Women’s Mental Health at The Royal
Craig Dalton was commissioned into the Royal Regiment of Canadian Artillery in 1990 and over the course of a 25-year Army career, had the distinct pleasure of serving alongside Canadian soldiers, sailors, airmen and airwomen, as well as whole-of-government partners, both here at home in Canada, and abroad on operations, in Cyprus, Bosnia-Herzegovina and, most recently, Afghanistan. During his time in uniform, Craig served in a wide variety of staff appointments and had the privilege to lead teams from the troop to formation level including command of the 2nd Regiment Royal Canadian Horse Artillery and command of 5th Canadian Division Support Group/Canadian Forces Base Gagetown.
Since his release in 2014, Craig has had the opportunity to serve at all three levels of government initially joining the Government of New Brunswick where he had privilege of serving as the Deputy Minister of Public Safety and subsequently as the Deputy Minister of Social Services. Craig then joined the Government of Prince Edward Island where he served as Deputy Minister of Family and Human Services before appointed as Canada’s Veterans Ombudsman. More recently, he has worked at the local government level as the City Manager with the City of Lethbridge and in his current position as the Chief Administrative Officer with the Squamish – Lillooet Regional District.
Craig holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the Royal Military College of Canada and holds Masters Degrees from Central Michigan University (Strategic Leadership), the United States Army Command and General Staff College (Strategy), and from Deakin University, Australia (Policy).
Inspector (Ret’d) Baltej Dhillon Hon LLD., C.Dir.
Raised in Malaysia, Baltej and his family move to British Columbia in 1983 after which they settled in Surrey. He studied criminology, and though initially interested in practicing law, he volunteered with the RCMP and acted as an interpreter so that the RCMP could communicate with recent Asian immigrants.
In 1988, Baltej decided to formally apply to join the RCMP. Though he met all the entrance requirements, he encountered one significant problem: the dress code forbade beards and wearing a turban in place of the uniform hat. In 1989, Baltej appealed to the RCMP Commissioner, who recommended new RCMP uniform regulations that would include an RCMP turban and the ability for members of the Sikh community to maintain their unshorn hair. After months of debate, the federal government announced new changes to the RCMP dress code in March of 1990 — including the freedom for observant Sikhs to wear beards and turbans. As a result, Baltej was able to join the RCMP, train in Regina and then graduate to active duty in 1991.
Inspector Dhillon’s career with the RCMP started off in Quesnel BC where he started off as Constable serving the community . He then went to serve in other units including the Air India Task Force, Pickton serial killer investigation, Polygraph Unit, established the first Provincial Intelligence Centre in BC, served as the Non Commissioned Officer in charge of Intelligence Section, RCMP – Federal Serious Organized Crime and retired in 2019 after serving as the Officer in Charge, RCMP – Operational Readiness and Response & Protective Technical Services Section.
Baltej has been awarded two honorary degrees of the Doctor of Laws by Kwantlen Polytech University in May 2014 and McMaster University in 2021, as well as the Distinguished Alumni Award from Kwantlen Polytechnic University. Inspector Dhillon is also the recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal and earned a Commanding Officer’s Commendation for Excellence in Policing for his work on the Pickton serial killer investigation
He is a Director with WorkSafeBC, Dan’s Legacy, Coast Mental Health BC, and Chair of the Canada India Education Society and continues to serve in law enforcement as a member of the Organised Crime Agency of BC in the role of Program Manager – Crime Guns Intelligence and Investigations Group for the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit in BC.
James is the President and CEO of verTerra Corp., an Ottawa based real estate development and infrastructure management company. Incorporated in 2009 by James and his late partner Judy Klenik, verTerra Corp., provides management and advisory services to public and private sector clients in the investment and delivery of real estate and infrastructure assets, specializing in Public Private Partnerships. Since incorporation, verTerra has successfully managed over $1 billion dollars of capital real estate projects in Canada and the United States.
Prior to establishing verTerra, James held Senior Management positions with national and international design and construction companies. James is an Architectural Technologist, Project Management Professional, LEED Accredited Professional and a Certified Risk Management Analyst.
James is a passionate and dedicated advocate for advancing mental health care in Canada. His father, two of his uncles and both grandfathers were war veterans and James’s sister suffered from mental illness from her childhood to her passing in 2018. James respects and understands the impact of mental illness on the people affected their families and the systemic challenges faced by mental health care organizations. James has served as an Independent Board Trustee of the Royal Ottawa Hospital Group (ROHGC) since 2018 and served on the Board of the Royal Ottawa Volunteers Association from 2009 to 2018, including a term as Board Chair.