Leadership and Management SIG

The Leadership and Management Special Interest Group became a formal part of the CFAS in September 2006. All IVF clinics and offices deal with business and administrative issues daily. The people hired to oversee these issues are skilled and knowledgeable in their respective fields whether it is accounting, human resources or clinic operations. The goals of the Leadership and Management SIG are to:

  • Develop a solid network of business/administrative personnel through membership.
  • Develop a business orientated “Needs Assessment” specific to our needs and interests.
  • Develop educational “Long Distance Learning” opportunities relating to business and operational aspects.
  • Develop good business standards for Canadian IVF programs.

We welcome anyone to our SIG and would love to have you join us, meet us and talk with us!


Penny Blesch - Chair

As the COO of Olive FerLM_SIG/Pennytility Centre, Penny is responsible for the operations of a complex system of processes, people and resources and countless daily decisions that impact patient centred care. Penny ensures that all of the systems, resources, and people are in place to achieve Olive’s goals. Penny’s dynamic background, blending HR, leadership and business has created an environment where employees are more likely to feel motivated, empowered and supported – and to perform exceptionally well in a constantly evolving and challenging environment and create workplace cultures that positively impact patient satisfaction and outcomes.

Penny has served on boards throughout her career: as the Board Liaison of Out on Screen, an executive board position, which maintains formal connection between the Board of Directors and staff members including the executive director. In addition, Penny served as a board member at Women in Leadership, a foundation dedicated to advancing women in leadership and empowering the next generation.

Kyle Macdonald - Vice Chair


Kyle Macdonald has been ReproMed’s Business Development Manager and Clinic Administrator for the past 9 years.  In addition to managing a busy IVF centre in Toronto, he works closely with the ReproMed Sperm Bank in helping patients and clinics across the country in the sourcing of donor sperm.  Major projects he has worked on include a procurement agreement with the Quebec government in supplying donor sperm to all patients in the province and helping roll out funded IVF services to patients in Ontario under the government’s fertility program.  Having worked with such organizations as AT&T and Dell in the past, he brings a wealth of knowledge in the areas of communications, logistics, and business development.

Julie Keizer - Secretary


Julie Keizer has been the Chief Operating Officer of Atlantic Assisted Reproductive Therapies since October 2016.  In her role, Julie brings a great deal of diverse leadership experience from the public and private sectors.

Over the six years prior to her current role, Julie held progressive leadership roles with the Nova Scotia Provincial Lotteries & Casino Corporation (NSPLCC) providing operational leadership to the Atlantic Lottery Corporation and Casino Nova Scotia. Prior to that, Julie spent ten years working with several of the largest oil companies in the world, Imperial Oil (ExxonMobil) and Suncor (Petro-Canada), in leadership roles in operations, contract management, marketing, project management and strategy.

She is honoured to be part of the CFAS Leadership and Management Special Interest Group and hopes to provide valuable contributions to the SIG and its members.

Simone Amir - Treasurer

Simone Headshot

Simone Amir is a fertility consultant with over 12 years of experience within the international fertility field. She currently works with ELITE IVF, a leading global egg donation and surrogacy agency, as a Director of Special Projects and was formerly the Clinic Manager of Procrea Fertility Centre in Toronto. Recently, she authored a chapter in the book, Empowering Women to Succeed.

In addition to her extensive work in the fertility field, Simone is an Ayurvedic Practitioner, Certified Labour Doula and women’s workshop leader with a decade of experience in various modules of holistic therapies. She is dedicated to helping patients achieve their goals through advanced and comprehensive care solutions.