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Dr. Samantha Winemaker

Dr. Samantha Winemaker, MD is an Associate Clinical Professor, Department of Family Medicine, in the Division of Palliative Care at McMaster University. She teaches palliative care to health care professionals.

Dr. Winemaker is also co-host of the podcast "Waiting Room Revolution". After over half a decade brainstorming, doing research and interviews with patients and their families, the podcast helps patients "unlock a better experience".

She won the Ontario College of Family Physicians Award of Excellence in 2010, the Elizabeth J. Latimer Prize in Palliative Care in 2018, and the Dr. S. Lawrence Librach Award for Palliative Medicine in the Community in 2019.

Dr. Winemaker has co-authored the book Hope for the Best, Plan for the Rest: 7 Keys for Navigating a Life-Changing Diagnosis, which is currently available for pre-order and will be available in print this September.

Dr. Winemaker is based in Hamilton, Ontario.

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Dr. Anne Katz

Dr. Anne Katz is the certified sexuality counselor and Clinical Nurse Specialist at CancerCare Manitoba in Winnipeg, Canada. The professional life of Dr. Katz is focused on providing information, education and counseling to people with cancer and their partners about sexual changes that can occur during and after treatment. Life with cancer can affect sexual functioning in various ways--some of these effects may be due to the cancer itself or the treatment.


But there is another important aspect to this work; Dr. Katz wants every person with cancer to be able to have a discussion about sexuality with their health care providers. And so she travels around the world, teaching health care providers to ask their patients about this important part of quality of life.

She also speaks more on this topic on her podcast "Sexually Speaking". 


Dr. Katz is the immediate past editor of the Oncology Nursing Forum, the premier research journal of the Oncology Nursing Society. She was inducted into the American Academy of Nursing in 2014.  


She is the author of 15 books for health care providers and health care consumers on the topics of illness and sexuality as well as cancer survivorship. The second edition of Woman Cancer Sex, was published in late 2020 and is the recipient of the SSAR Consumer Book of the Year. The second edition of Prostate Cancer and the Man You Love was published in the Fall of 2022.  

Dr. Katz is based in Winnipeg, Manitoba.


Carl Dixon

Former Frontman of The Guess Who & Catastrophic Car Accident Survivor

Carl Dixon shares stories, from his rock star journey across three decades to the tale of his body-mangling MVA, with song performances and brief video clips to illuminate the key points. He takes the audience on an emotional journey with humour, insight and poignancy that will make the listeners think differently about how to meet adversity and undertake reinvention.

Carl Dixon remains one of Canada’s stellar singers and musicians. A recording artist since the 1980’s he fronted and played with some of Canada’s most iconic bands including ‘The Guess Who’, ‘Coney Hatch’ and ‘April Wine’.


Carl was critically injured in a car accident in Australia. His world was blindsided in the span of two seconds in 2008.

Carl shares his insight and analysis of how he let go of the past and built a future as he got on with life. “After a major life event things are not SUPPOSED to be the same. You’re different now and must recognize what has changed and how to adapt.” He likens it to a filter – things fall away that are no longer a good fit. How do you choose what to let go and what to take with you?

The resources for survival and “thrival” are within us and around us.


Carl Dixon’s now on a mission to share his lessons learned, of resilience and of rising above, acquired in the face of seeming no-hope. He continues to give many musical performances each year.


Carl lives in the woodland wilds of Haliburton, Ontario, Canada.

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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Sex, Death and Rock 'n' Roll


for our free virtual conference
May 30, 2023
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.



May 30, 2023
8:00am - 1:30pm MDT


Webinar Open for Log-In 

Enjoy live music by Michael McLaren with special guest appearance by Dr. Charlie Chen and Nicole McLauchlin, Care Manager, Palliative Home Care


Dr. Anne Katz

Why Is it so difficult to talk about sexuality at or near the end of life? The challenges of talking about sexuality.


Opening Remarks


15 Minute Break


Dr. Samantha Winemaker

Waiting Room Revolution (WRR), a solution to help people feel more in control, confident, and prepared throughout their serious illness journey.


Carl Dixon

Stories from his rock star journey to the tale of his body mangling MVA, with song performances and video clips to illuminate key points.


15 Minute Break

Enjoy live music!


Closing Remarks

Quilt Draw

Record Player
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