A multi-event series, our FemSTEM program looks to inspire, engage, and celebrate women entrepreneurs.

Date: January 13, 2021
Location or Type:
Start: 2 PM EST
End: 4 PM EST

Join us to hear from our panel of extraordinary women entrepreneurs on their lived experiences innovating in the health space.

Meet Our Panelists

Joella Almeida is Co-Founder & Operations at MedEssist, a health-tech startup that focuses on improving the everyday health of patients by empowering them to access, understand, and manage their health through technology. Joella has worked in both start-ups & corporate organizations over the past decade. During her time at a fintech startup in 2017, she had the opportunity to experience first-hand a large-scale startup-acquisition by one of the 6th largest non-commercial global banks in the world. By leveraging business planning & relationship building to pursue strategic goals, she excelled in industries such as financial services, payments, & e-commerce. Today, as Co-Founder & Operations at MedEssist, she works to change the adoption of digital health across Canada through equitable access to healthcare opportunities. Dr. Natalie J. Galant is a co-founder of Paradox Immunotherapeutics, a pharmaceutical company dedicated to the creation of antibody therapies for the treatment of rare protein misfolding diseases, especially those characterized by amyloidosis. Prior to taking on this role, Natalie received her PhD from the University of Toronto’s Department of Medical Biophysics and in her short academic tenure has co-authored over 15 publications in research areas ranging from chemical informatics to immunotherapy drug development. Her PhD work helped lead to the development of a monoclonal antibody currently in FDA clinical trials for the treatment of ATTR Amyloidosis. Additionally, she is the recipient of numerous academic fellowships and together with her team, was the winner of the inaugural Ted Rogers Centre for Heart Research ECHO 2019 $250,000 pitch competition. Rabia T. Khan, PhD, MBA is Founder and CEO of Ladder Therapeutics, a foundation stage biotech, a YCombinator company. Rabia has a background in immuno-genetics and is focussed on bridging the worlds of science, business and technology in the areas of medicine, healthcare, network biology and genomics.  Most recently, she was Managing Director for the Discovery Sciences division at Sensyne health, a publicly listed company with a unique partnership model with the NHS. At Sensyne, she established the scientific strategy, built the data science and discovery teams from 4 to 50 in 6 months. Dr. Khan was pivotal to a number of significant pharma partnerships with Bayer, BMS, LifeHub, Roche, Alexion and lead the launch of the SENS product focused on the development of Predictive Algorithms for patient deterioration. Under her leadership, the discovery sciences division launched multiple successful products alone or with pharma partners; the development of these products benefitted from Sensyne’s unique access to NHS data resources. Prior to joining Sensyne Health, Rabia held senior roles at BenevolentAI and Meta. At Meta (acquired by Chan Zuckerberg BioHub), she was pivotal in the partnership with the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) to acquire horizon-scanning technology that used NLP to research the biomedical corpus. At BenevolentAI, she helped shape the discovery strategy, and led the Age-Related Macular Degeneration and Glioblastoma drug discovery programmes and served as the interface between the technical and biological teams alongside Prof. Jackie Hunter. Rabia regularly presents on embracing the intersection of healthcare and technology to advance better patient outcomes and advocates the importance of STEM in industry and education. She was part of the feature 50 Movers and Shakers in BioBusiness – 19 and Invivo’s 30 Rising Leaders 2020. 
We’ll also hear from our Director, Paul Santerre, on the fundamentals of entrepreneurship and venture building. The event will close with an hour-long workshop session where you’ll work together to create a compelling short pitch addressing one of today’s pressing health problems, supported by the H2i team and our exemplary panelists.


2:00 – 2:40 PM | Panel (Joella Almeida, Natalie J. Galant, Rabia Khan, moderated by Vivian Cheung) 2:40 – 2:55 PM | Fundamentals of Entrepreneurship and the H2i 10 Point Plan (Paul Santerre) 2:55 – 3:50 PM | Workshop 3:50 – 4:00 PM | Closing Remarks (Paul Santerre, Vivian Cheung)