Mailing Address

Canadian Scientific & Christian Affiliation
Post Office Box 63082. University Plaza
Dundas, Ontario L9H 6Y3
Phone: 905-297-5245

Specific Inquiries

Executive Council

The CSCA Executive Council (EC) consists entirely of unpaid volunteers. Under normal circumstances, the Council structure proceeds as follows: Every three years, the EC brings on a new vice president from among our membership. At that time, the existing vice president becomes president, the existing president becomes past president, and the existing past president retires from the EC. The positions of Secretary, Treasurer, and Student & Early Career Rep. are not limited to specific terms. The Executive Director serves at the pleasure of the EC, with a review every five years.

President

Heather Prior

Bachelor of Religious Studies (Mennonite Brethren Bible College, Winnipeg)
B. Sc. & Ph.D. (Genetics, University of Alberta)

Associate Professor and Chair of Biology,
The King’s University, Edmonton, AB

Heather teaches and studies biology and its history as an associate professor at The King’s University in Edmonton. She has also studied in Winnipeg, Ohio, California, and China. Her research interests include ocular cataracts, honeybee diseases, and the intersection of faith and science, particularly in the area of reproductive technology and treatments for infertility. She delights in teaching, traveling, collaborating, and generally being amazed at the incredible universe God has created. She has experienced the CSCA as a gift of fellowship and an opportunity to nurture and deepen the dialogue between Christian faith and science.

Heather serves as our Executive Council Liaison to our local chapters in Edmonton and Saskatchewan.

Vice President

Vlad Paserin

BSc, Applied Physics (1987)
MSc, Physics (1988)
MASc, Engineering (Management Science) (1996)
PhD, Physics (2009)

Vlad Paserin is a Research Associate and Adjunct Assistant Professor at the University of Waterloo. He has been a CSCA/ASA member since 2012. He is also one of the founders and Principal of VPM Research Inc., an Ontario-based contract research and consulting practice in vapometallurgy and metal additive manufacturing materials development. Vlad holds PhD (Physics) and MASc (Management Science) degrees from University of Waterloo and is a member of the Canadian Association of Physicists. His professional background is in the area of metal foams, chemical vapour deposition, and battery materials development. Prior to coming to the University of Waterloo in 2018, he spent 29 years working in the mining and metal processing industry.

Vlad is passionate about the topics of green energy, science diplomacy, and building bridges between people, organizations, and countries, by identifying the root causes of divisions and tirelessly working on addressing these.  He strives to promote mutual understanding between people, using the principles of Christian faith and scientific curiosity as useful tools in this endeavour.

Past President

Patrick Franklin

Associate Professor of Theology, Tyndale Seminary

Patrick_Franklin (2016)
Patrick Franklin, PhD, is an Associate Professor of Theology at Tyndale Seminary (Toronto, Canada). He has been a CSCA/ASA member since 2008, he was invited to be a Fellow of the CSCA/ASA in 2017, and he is a former Book Review Editor for Perspectives on Science and Christian Faith. He is the author of Being Human, Being Church: The Significance of Theological Anthropology for Ecclesiology (Paternoster, 2016) and many academic articles and book chapters (including two articles and several reviews in PSFC). An experienced pastor, church leader, professor, and scholar, Patrick is passionate about encouraging and facilitating deeper dialogue between the scientific community and local churches and pastors. To this end, he is intentional about building relationships, networking, and providing opportunities to host genuine conversations and nurture ongoing friendships and partnerships.

Patrick serves as our Executive Council Liaison to our local chapters in Winnipeg and Toronto.

Secretary

Joseph Vybihal

M.Sc. Computer Science (McGill)
B.Sc. Mathematics and Computer Science (McGill)

Joseph Vybihal has been a software engineer and university-level educator since 1990. His research interests have focused on intelligent computer systems, robotics, software engineering and education outreach. He has been an educator at Bishop’s University, Herzing Institute, and McGill University, where he is now. He was awarded best instructor in computer science at McGill in 2010. He runs a private consultancy that has managed and built multiple software engineering projects for institutions (hospitals and universities) and corporations (robotics, factories, financial companies, and property managers). His work experience includes writing software for Bell Northern Research, the Royal Victoria Hospital, and the former CTO of a startup called Xypper.com. His education outreach experience includes a published paper in student outreach and the directorship of the McGill Computer Science “Be A Computer Scientist for a Week” weeklong day camp for 12 years. He is co-chair of the McGill Computer Science Undergraduate Committee, and one of the Discipline Officers for the Department of Science of McGill University. He chaired the committee tasked to write the EDI statement for the School of Computer Science at McGill University. He has co-authored two textbooks, Software Systems (Kendall Hunt, 3rd edition 2019) and Fortran, C and Algorithms (Kendall Hunt, 2002). He has published research papers in Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence, IEEE’s Frontiers in Education, amongst other venues.

Treasurer

Andrew Sebestyen

B.Sc. (Biology, Chemistry), McMaster University
D.O.H.S. (Occupational Health and Safety), McMaster University
C.I.H. (Certified Industrial Hygienist), American Board of Industrial Hygiene;
Board for Global EHS Credentialing

Andrew was the Environmental Manager for Stelco. He began his career in research and teaching Occupational Hygiene and Epidemiology with McMaster University’s Occupational and Environmental Health Program, before moving to the Steel Industry, but continued to teach Environmental Management in the Program. He also teaches in McMaster’s Engineering Department “Cokemaking Course.” Andy is a Certified Industrial Hygienist (CIH) (retired) under the American Board of Industrial Hygiene. 

Andy represented the steel industry in many community groups and expert working groups such as the Hamilton Bay Area Restoration Council, Hamilton Harbour Remedial Action Plan, Hamilton Industrial Environmental Association, Clean Air Hamilton, Hamilton Air Monitoring Network, and the NPRI Expert Working Group. He represented Canada as a member of the Asia-Pacific Partnership to share Greenhouse Gas reduction technologies in the steel industry.

Andy has published peer-reviewed articles in Industrial Hygiene and Epidemiology and has been a reviewer of research papers for the American Industrial Hygiene Association Journal (AIHAJ). He has published articles in such magazines as Occupational Health & Safety Canada, and the Ontario Occupational Health Nurses Association Journal. 

Andy’s wife, Charmain, is an ordained Minister in the Presbyterian Church and recently retired as the Minister of a church in Hamilton, and Andy and Charmain often work as a ministry team. Andy has been a member of the CSCA for 10 years and has given a talk on “Faith and Science in the Workplace.”

Student and Early Career Representative

Nyasha Gondora

B.Sc. (Biochemistry & Molecular Biology), Trinity University
Ph.D. (Neuroscience), University of Waterloo

Nyasha Gondora was born and raised in Zimbabwe, where she developed a passion for science through observing the impact of science and medicine on her community. In 2013, Nyasha completed a BSc. in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas where she was the recipient of a $92,000 academic scholarship. It is during her undergraduate years that Nyasha discovered her passion for research. In 2020, Nyasha completed a Ph.D. in Neuroscience (with a focus in neuro-pharmacology) at the University of Waterloo. During her graduate studies, Nyasha was the recipient of numerous local and national level competitive awards and scholarships, including a scholarship for admission into the prestigious Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Drug Safety-Training Program, which tremendously impacted the trajectory of her career. Currently, Nyasha is a postdoctoral research fellow; her research is focused on pharmacoepidemiology and drug safety. Nyasha is also currently an Ontario Pharmacy Evidence Network (OPEN) scientist, an Academic Consultant with BeMo Academic Consulting and the co-founder of As a Matter of Science, a scientific communications platform. Last but definitely not least, Nyasha is a proud member of the CSCA, where she currently serves as the Waterloo contact.

Nyasha serves as our Executive Council Liaison to our local chapter in Waterloo.

Executive Director

Arnold E. Sikkema

B.SC. (UNIVERSITY OF WATERLOO), PH.D. (UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA)

Professor of Physics
Chair, Mathematical Sciences Department
Trinity Western University, Langley, BC

Arnold is a theoretical physicist, with background in general relativity and condensed matter theory. His current research interests are in theoretical biophysics and in the Christian philosophy of science, particularly in the relationship between physics and biology. Since 1997 he has been involved in Christian higher education, and joined the executive council of the CSCA in 2011. On November 9th, 2018, he became the Executive Director of CSCA. Originally from Ontario, he and his wife Valerie (a professional horticulturist) have been happy to call BC home since 1991, except for a sojourn in the USA from 1997 to 2005. They have three adult children, all of whom have studied at TWU.

Arnold serves as our Executive Council Liaison to our local chapters in Vancouver and Calgary.

www.twu.ca/profile/arnold-e-sikkema

Other CSCA Staff


Digital Media and Communications Specialist

Mark McEwan

B.Ed. (University of Alberta)
M. Theological studies (cand.) (ACTS seminaries, Trinity Western University)

Originally from Edmonton, Alberta, Mark and his wife live in the Lower Mainland, BC. Mark studies at ACTS Seminaries on the campus of Trinity Western University, where he has occasionally lectured on apologetics, science-and-faith, and Christianity-and-culture. In addition to being a certified Electrician, Mark is qualified to teach physical sciences and mathematics at the secondary level. His academic interests include epistemology, languages, apologetics, and the fruitful interaction of science and theology. He also has experience with webpages, video editing, and volunteer youth ministry. He feels specifically called to serve Christ by encouraging responsible thinking in matters of theology, science, and especially with respect to interactions between the two.

As CSCA’s Project Development Officer, Mark worked full-time for our 2016-2018 “Local Chapters Project,” which was funded by a three-year grant from the Temple Word Charity Foundation, Inc. During that time, he worked closely with Project Leader Arnold Sikkema on creating new local chapters around the country, a more robust online presence for CSCA, and organizing our first national CSCA conference. You can read about the project’s outcome in our December 2018 newsletter.

Under the title of Digital Media and Communications Specialist, Mark continues to help CSCA with our website, YouTube Channel, and various social media. In 2020, he also joined ASA’s team as Digital Content Specialist.

Local Chapter Contacts

The CSCA has the following contacts for our local chapters around the country (from West to East):

Vancouver, BC

Arnold Sikkema

Professor of Physics, Trinity Western University


vancouver@csca.ca

Vancouver Events & Info

Calgary, AB

Matthew Morris

Associate Professor of Biology, Ambrose University


calgary@csca.ca

Calgary Events & Info

Edmonton, AB

David Haitel

Spiritual Care Coordinator, Capital Care


edmonton@csca.ca

Edmonton Events & Info

Saskatchewan

Truitt Wiensz

Assistant Professor of Physics and Mathematics, Briercrest College & Seminary


saskatchewan@csca.ca

Saskatchewan Events & Info

Winnipeg, MB

Rebecca Dielschneider

Assistant Professor of Biology, Providence University College


winnipeg@csca.ca

Winnipeg Events & Info

Waterloo, ON

Nyasha Gondora

Post-Doctoral Researcher (Pharmacoepidemiology), University of Waterloo


waterloo@csca.ca

Waterloo Events & Info

Hamilton, ON

E. Janet Warren

Family Physician (Psychotherapy), Independent Scholar (Theology)


hamilton@csca.ca

Hamilton Events & Info

Toronto, ON

Steve Hewko

Program Director, Wycliffe Serves, Wycliffe College


toronto@csca.ca

Toronto Events & Info

Ottawa, ON

Bob Geddes

Secretary, CSCA


ottawa@csca.ca

Ottawa Events & Info

Montreal, QC

Joseph Vybihal

Faculty Lecturer, School of Computer Science, McGill University


montreal@csca.ca

Montreal Events & Info

Nova Scotia

Helen Lau

Marine Seismologist, Dalhousie University


nova.scotia@csca.ca

Nova Scotia Events & Info