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Jared Rubenstein

Jared Rubenstein is a pediatric palliative care doctor and medical educator at Baylor College of Medicine and Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston, TX, USA.  He is passionate about helping people talk about difficult things and believes that the use of satire, animation, and humor can facilitate these conversations.  When he’s not talking about palliative care, he loves traveling and spending time in nature with his wonderful wife and two hilarious kids.

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Mike Lang

Since his own cancer diagnosis at the age of 25, Mike has been heavily involved in the creation and improvement of programs and services for cancer survivors and their supporters in Canada and around North America. He travels the world creating Films and teaching Digital Storytelling Facilitation to improve health and wellness and has worked with over 900 patients, family members and health care providers, to help them create their own short-films, called “Digital Stories”, about their health and wellness experiences.

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Will Gadd

Will is a prominent, outstanding Canadian athlete and adventurer and the first person to climb the frozen Niagara Falls and fly over the Grand Canyon on a paraglider among other accomplishments. For more than 30 years Will has been climbing, paragliding and kayaking at high level. He has won international sports competitions, been a pioneer in multiple sports and established two world distance records for paragliding. Besides being a coach, he spends time in front of the camera, including a series for The Discovery Channel on the most radical places on earth.

Music by: Michael McLaren & The Celestial Duo

Michael McLaren has been playing music since a young age and has always had a strong preference for vocals, piano, and guitar. He was first introduced to palliative care as a volunteer at the Calgary Rosedale Hospice. Here he had the opportunity to see firsthand the positive effect that music can have on patients. Since then, Michael has had a passion for performing at hospice-driven events where he feels he can truly contribute to this amazing community.

Nicky and Charlie (AKA The Celestial Duo) started singing together in November 2022. They recorded a song as a Christmas present for the Calgary Zone PEOLC portfolio and haven’t looked back since. Nicky is a Care Manager with Palliative Home Care and has worked with the program as a frontline RN case manager, and charge nurse prior to that. Charlie is a palliative care physician consultant and is just finishing up his term as Medical Director for the program. Harmonizing brings great joy for both of them and the singing serves as a soothing balm for these challenging times. Using their voices allows them to connect to what is important: community and fun. They are grateful for the opportunity to share their love of music and singing at the Mary O’Connor Conference.
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The Heart of the Story in Palliative Care


for our free virtual conference
June 19, 2024
8:00am - 1:30pm MDT

If you are unable to register, it means the conference is currently full. Keep checking back as spaces may open if people cancel.

Webinar opens at 8:00am, conference starts promptly at 8:30am.

Zoom link will be in your confirmation email

after you register.

The Mary O'Connor Conference Committee is pleased to offer this conference free of charge, from Palliative & End of Life Care, Calgary Zone.



June 19, 2024
8:00am - 1:30pm MDT

0800 – 0830
settle in/music

0830 – 0900
0900 – 0920
Jan vandale

0920 – 0925

0925 – 1025
Jared rubenstein


Heather Shantz intro

Mike Lang

1155 - 1220

1220 -1320
Will Gadd

wrap up

Pages of Book
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