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Biographical Notes

Dr. Kathleen PajerImage of smiling woman with short grey hair and glasses

Chief of Psychiatry 

Dr. Pajer joined CHEO in 2014 as the Chief of Psychiatry, and Professor of Psychiatry, University of Ottawa Faculty of Medicine. Dr. Pajer became the Chair of the University Department of Psychiatry on July 1, 2017. She currently sits on the editorial board of the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry and recently ended an 8-year term on the editorial board of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. Prior to this job, she was the Chief of Psychiatry at the IWK Health Centre in Halifax for three years and Senior Physician of the IWK Mental Health and Addictions Program, where she was also Professor of Psychiatry and Pediatrics at Dalhousie University Faculty of Medicine. She has a keen interest in system change, continuous quality improvement, and patient-focused care and research.

Dr. Pajer completed her M.D. at the University of South Alabama and later completed her Psychiatry residency at the Yale School of Medicine. While at Yale, she also obtained a Master’s in Public Health (Chronic Disease Epidemiology). Dr. Pajer is the recipient of numerous grant awards, including funding by the U.S. National Institutes of Health. In 2009, she was recognized as one of “America’s Top Psychiatrists”. She was one of six women honoured at the Women Reshaping the World Conference held in Halifax in 2013.

In the past five years, she has also been developing a blood test to diagnose depression in teens. She has studied the biological mechanisms for female anti-social behavior for almost 20 years. Check out her TED talk here.

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