Committee Membership

Rituparna Kanungo, Chair of the Liaison Committee
(term ends June 2021) 

Dr. Kanungo is a Professor of Physics at Saint Mary’s University, Halifax, with prior work experience in Japan and Germany.  Her research area is in experimental subatomic physics, with a specialization in reaction spectroscopy of rare isotopes. She is an active researcher at TRIUMF, where she has been leading CFI projects for facilities aimed for such experiments. In addition, she has research programs in other international facilities, namely GSI in Germany, RIKEN in Japan and NSCL in USA that build on strong international collaborations. She has authored many peer reviewed research articles. Her research expertise is recognized through a number of invited talks among which is the honorable invitation to speak at the Nobel Symposium. She has been the recipient of the Alexander von Humboldt fellowship and the GSI Exotic Nuclei Community award. She was also awarded the NSERC Discovery Accelerator Supplement and, in 2018, the CAP-TRIUMF Vogt Medal for Outstanding Achievement in Subatomic Physics. She hosted and chaired the international conference DREB 2016 in Halifax. She is currently the President of the Canadian Institute of Nuclear Physics and the Chair of the CAP-NSERC Liaison Committee. She has also served on the Policy and Planning Advisory Committee of  TRIUMF.


Sanjeev Sehara, Theoretical and Mathematical Physics
(term ends June 2022)




Martin Connors, Near-Earth and Space Physics
(term ends 2023)


Iris Dillmann, Subatomic Physics
(term ends 2021)

Dr. Iris Dillmann is a Research Scientist at TRIUMF since 2013 and Adjunct Professor at the Department for Physics and Astronomy at the University of Victoria.  Dr. Dillmann obtained her PhD at the University of Basel/ Switzerland and was a postdoctoral fellow at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and the TU Munich/ Germany. In 2010 she received a prestigious Helmholtz Young Investigators Grant and worked at the GSI Helmholtz Center for Heavy Ion Research in Darmstadt/ Germany and the University of Giessen.  Her field of research is experimental nuclear physics and astrophysics, with a focus on the creation of heavy elements in stars in the rapid neutron capture process. She received an NSERC Discovery Accelerator Supplement in 2014.


Luc Beaulieu, Biomedical and Biological Physics
(term ends 2022)



Karen Kavanagh, Quantum and Soft Condensed Matter Physics
(term ends 2021)

Karen L. Kavanagh is a Professor of Physics and an Associate Member of the Department of Chemistry and School of Engineering Science at Simon Fraser University. She also directs the 4D Labs Electron Imaging and Holography Facility, which enables hands-on training in electron microscopy techniques.  She received her Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering in 1987 from Cornell University and then worked for a year at IBM T. J. Watson Research Labs, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (postdoctoral fellowships), moving to the University of California, San Diego (Dept. of Electrical and Computer Engineering) in 1988, before returning to Canada in 2000 to her current position.  She is a Fellow of the UK Institute of Physics and has published over a hundred refereed scientific papers. Her research is focused on atomic interfaces and nanostructures with recent interest in nanocontacts, epitaxial electrodeposited metal-semiconductor interfaces, channeling and diffraction using helium ion microscopy, defects in nanowire heterostructures, electron holography, and two-dimensional materials.


Joseph Thywiessen, Atomic and Molecular Physics, Optics and Lasers, and Plasmas
(term ends 2023)



Alison Sills, Astronomy, Astrophysics, and Cosmology
(term ends 2023)

Dr. Alison Sills studies weird stars in unusual places. The stars that interest her have had a strange encounter during their life, such as a collision with another star or an interaction with their binary companion. These events happen more often in dense stellar clusters. Dr Sills uses a variety of computational tools to model the formation and evolution of these clusters and their stellar populations. Dr Sills attended the University of Western Ontario for her BSc before obtaining her PhD at Yale University. After postdoctoral positions at The Ohio State University and the University of Leicester in the UK, she returned to Ontario to take up a faculty position at McMaster University in 2001. A full professor at McMaster since 2012, she has also served as Associate Dean of Science and Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. Dr Sills is involved in the astronomical community at the national and international level, through her membership in Canadian Astronomical Society committees, the Canadian Institute for Theoretical Astrophysics council, SuperChair of the Canadian Telescope Time Allocation Committee, and an International Astronomical Union steering committee. She has reviewed grant, scholarship, and telescope time applications for granting agencies in many countries, and been involved with organization of over 25 international conferences since 2000. Dr Sills also spends time on outreach activities to bring astronomy to the public, to support women in STEM, and to bring scientists to elementary schools.




Emily Diepenveen, Team Leader, overseeing the Physics and Computer Science portfolio within the Mathematical, Environmental and Physical Sciences Division of NSERC’s Research Grants and Scholarships Directorate

Elizabeth Boston, Director of NSERC’s Mathematical, Environmental and Physical Division within the Research Grants and Scholarships Directorate

Philip Bale, Program Officer, Research Grants, Physics and Computer Science

Ed Irving, Manager, College and Community Innovation program, Research Partnerships Directorate, Colleges, Commercialization, and Portfolio Planning

Kari Dalnoki-Veress, Chair of NSERC’s Physics Evaluation Group



Ubi Wichoski, Director of Academic Affairs, Canadian Association of Physicists

Francine Ford, Executive Director, Canadian Association of Physicists