WINDSOR, Ont., May 4, 2023 — Dr. Andrew Park, an emergency physician from London, Ont., today becomes the 142nd president of the Ontario Medical Association and top advocate for the province’s 43,000 doctors.
Dr. Park, the OMA’s first president of East Asian ancestry, begins his one-year term at the association’s Annual General Meeting in Windsor on Thursday night.
Dr. Park’s priorities for his presidency include working with the government to implement the Prescription for Ontario: Doctors’ 5-Point Plan for Better Health Care, the OMA’s roadmap to fixing the cracks in the health-care system.
“I wanted to become the president of the OMA because we’ve experienced so much throughout the pandemic and I was tired of sitting on the sidelines,” Dr. Park said. “Being a physician is to be a leader and I wanted to contribute my voice to helping the system along.”
Dr. Park practises emergency medicine at London Health Sciences Centre and St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital. He is a graduate of the University of Toronto School of Medicine who completed his residency at Queen’s University and holds a certification in emergency medicine from Dalhousie University. He is also an assistant professor at Western University’s Schulich School of Medicine, where he developed a novel course for resident physicians focused on emotional intelligence and leadership. He also holds an executive MBA as well as a master’s in education in adult learning and global change.
Dr. Park, the son of immigrants from South Korea, said it was a “great honour” to be the OMA’s first East Asian president.
“Sometimes when you work in a system where the leaders don't resemble you, it makes you feel as if you don't have a place in that system,” he said. “It’s with great humility that I say that I’m the first East Asian President. Representation matters, and for young physicians or young medical students who see a leader that resembles them, it gives them the inspiration and the desire to want to work to make changes in the health-care system.”
Dr. Park succeeds Dr. Rose Zacharias as OMA president. During her term, Dr. Zacharias conducted more than 350 media interviews on topics from the pandemic to mental health issues, including physician wellness. She was a critical figure in promoting the Prescription and in developing strong relationships with Premier Doug Ford’s government, including cabinet ministers, MPPs and officials.
Dr. Zacharias will continue to serve the OMA as past president.
OMA members have chosen Dr. Dominik Nowak, a family doctor practising at Women's College Hospital in Toronto, as their president-elect. Dr. Nowak will work closely with Dr. Park throughout his presidency.
The Ontario Medical Association represents Ontario’s 43,000-plus physicians, medical students and retired physicians, advocating for and supporting doctors while strengthening the leadership role of doctors in caring for patients. Our vision is to be the trusted voice in transforming Ontario’s health-care system.
Leslie Shepherd, OMA Director of Earned and Social Media, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 647-962-1387.