Our People

Since its inception, The World Fellowship for Schizophrenia and Allied Disorders has been an organization made up of volunteers. Two paid staff and several volunteers assist at WFSAD's office in Toronto, Canada. WFSAD has a very active Board of Directors who support families around the world.

Board of Directors

WFSAD has a board of directors of no more than 15 members. Each member does field work in the area assigned to him/her. Thus, the board is a very active, hands-on part of the organization.

President: Lic. Martha Piatigorsky was founding president of the Argentine organization for families and patients—APEF— and a licensed psychologist by profession. She recently served as the organizing secretary of Alianza Latina WFSAD, a group of family members from a dozen Latin American countries. She has a daughter with schizophrenia. (Board term 2 years: 2008-2010)

President Elect: Radha Shankar, MB, BS, is an internationally known psychiatrist in India. She has worked in executive positions in SCARF (Schizophrenia Research Foundation) and has represented WFMH (World Federation for Mental Health) and WAPR (World Association for Psychosocial Rehabilitation) at the regional level. She continues to be part of the WFSAD Families as Partners in Care strategy committee, advocating for families in the developing world. She was organizing secretary of the First and Second National Carers’ Conference in Chennai, India, held in 2001 and 2003 respectively, as well as the recent 6th biennial conference of WFSAD. (Board term 2 years: 2008-2010)

Treasurer: Ali Bahadori was a senior accountant and internal auditor at a large cement company in Iran. He has a bachelor's degree in accounting from Azad University in Iran. He has recently moved to Toronto. (Board term 2 years renewable: 2007–09).

Secretary/Public Relations and Development Officer: Diane Froggatt, BMus, BEd. Diane was Executive Director of WFSAD from 1987-2004 and previously worked as an educator and in public relations. Diane has developed many of the WFSAD's educational materials. She has a 40-year-old son with schizophrenia.

Chairman for the Asian Region: Jim Crowe is a past president of the Schizophrenia Fellowship of New Zealand. He continues to serve on many mental health committees including being a board member of Royal Australian and New Zealand College Bi-National Professional and Community Relations Committee. He has agreed to continue with his outreach to Asia for the next two years, and has been appointed Chairman for the Asian Region of WFSAD. He was awarded the 1990 Commemorative Medal by Her Majesty for services to people with mental illness and their families. (Board term 2 years: 2008-2010)

Past President: Dale Johnson, PhD, is a Professor of Psychology at University of Houston. Dale has written several books to assist families of the mentally ill to cope. Together with Prof. Harriet P. Lefley, he is the editor of the book Families as Allies in Treatment of the Mentally Ill. He was an active member of the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, Texas, for many years and is a former president of the NAMI national organization. Dale's son with schizophrenia recently passed away. (Board term: 4 years: 2008-2010)

John E. Gray, PhD has a doctorate in psychology from the University of London and a Certificate in Hospital and Health Care Administration from the University of Saskatchewan, Canada. He has worked many years in mental health services and more recently in policy development for the Ministry of Health in British Columbia. He has written many papers on topics related to mental health; mental health legislation and the treatment of the mentally ill, as well as a book "Canadian Mental Health Law and Policy". He is currently serving on the board of the Schizophrenia Society of Canada and has recently taken office as its President. As Secretary General of the International Association of Gerontology, John as considerable experience on the international issues related to nongovernmental organizations. (Board term 4 years: 2004-2008)

Thomas Walunguba, RN has been associated with WFSAD for many years and in that time he, and a group of Ugandan nurses working in psychiatry, formed the Uganda Schizophrenia Fellowship of which he is the founding chairman. He has advanced his career obtaining certificates in the practice of psychiatric nursing. He has also been instrumental in developing the USF so that it now has several branches outside Kampala. He recently led a contingent from the USF to Kenya for a cross-border workshop held by WFSAD. (Board term 4 years: 2004-2008)

Marissa de Guzman, PhD is a psychiatrist at the Philippine General Hospital, who works with both patients and families. She has been very active in the development of caregiver support across the Philippines, including the family group: Bukas Puso at Isip (Open Hearts and Minds). (Board term 2 years: 2007-2009)

Executive Director: Trish Ruebottom, MBA, has been involved in the mental health field for many years in a variety of capacities; she has provided helpline support to those with mental illness and addiction issues, assisted people with mental illness to access services, and created community partnerships with local organizations to improve service to the community. Following her work in mental health she completed her Masters in Business Administration at Trinity College Dublin. She also has a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and a Bachelor of Science from the University of Guelph, Ontario, Canada. Prior to joining WFSAD, Trish was a senior consultant at Aperio, a consulting firm which specializes in social innovation and entrepreneurship. She has worked with many organizations, building strategies to ensure sustainability and bringing new thought to the non-profit sector. Email:

Honorary Board Members

Margaret Leggatt, PhD, BAppSc (OT), served as president of WFSAD from 1996–2000 during which time she established the Families as Partners in Care initiative. She has travelled extensively for WFSAD’s Family Empowerment Program. She has been invested with the Order of Australia for her work with the schizophrenia movement in Australia. Her PhD is in sociology. Margaret has a nephew with schizophrenia. She was on the WFSAD Board until 2002.

Geraldine Marshall, PhD, BSc, BN, served as the second president of WFSAD from 1991-96. She is a psychiatric nurse by profession. She established the Mutual Exchange program (later the Family Empowerment Program). Her monumental achievement was the development of family support in Russia during the post USSR period. Geraldine lost a daughter to schizophrenia. She was recently awarded the Meritorious Service Medal of Canada for her work in schizophrenia. She was on the WFSAD Board until 2002.

Medical Advisory Panel

Prof. James Kennedy, FRCP(C)

Prof. Julian Leff, FRC Psych

Prof. Wm. McFarlane, MD


Trish Ruebottom
Executive Director

Diane Froggatt
Public Relations and Development Officer

Susan Ford
Administrative Manager

Mary Hancock
Newsletter Editor

Mel Rubinstein
Office Volunteer