News at Medicine - November 2020 - Profile of a donor: Three decades of giving


Profile of a donor: Three decades of giving
November 15, 2020
Dr. Lynn Noseworthy (MD’79) has been giving to Memorial University and the Faculty of Medicine for 30 years. She feels her medical degree from Memorial provided her with wonderful opportunities to pursue a rewarding career.
 
“Giving back to MUN is one small way to show gratitude for the privileges I have enjoyed throughout my life as a result of the medical education I received there.”
 
Dr. Noseworthy is a native of St. John’s, N.L. and has lived in Ontario since 1985. The middle child of five, Dr. Noseworthy and says she’s “married to a wonderful man, Robert Kyle, who is also a medical officer of health, and we have two very talented and resilient children, Emily and Peter.”
 
Can you give me a brief overview of your career?
 
I have been the medical officer of health for the Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit since 2004. Prior to that I was the medical officer of health for the Hastings and Prince Edward Counties Health Unit and an associate medical officer of health for the City of North York Public Health Department.
 
I graduated from Memorial University with a doctor of medicine degree in 1979. After five years of general practice in Newfoundland, I went on to obtain a master of health science degree in community health and epidemiology in 1987 from the University of Toronto and my specialist certification in community medicine from the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada in1990.
 
I have always been interested in public health and my time in general practice reinforced for me the knowledge that many of my patients’ illnesses were due either to their life circumstances or their life choices. So, I decided to go back to school and study public health. Over my public health career, I served on the Executive of the Association of Local Public Health Agencies, the Ontario Medical Association’s Committee on Population Health, and the Executive of the Ontario Medical Association’s Section of Public Health Physicians. Earlier this year the Association of Local Public Health Agencies announced that I am one of three recipients of its 2020 Distinguished Service Awards.
 
After a 31-year career in public health in Ontario, I will be retiring in December.
 
What is your favourite part about being a physician?
Most of my career has been in public health. The World Health Organization defines public health as “The art and science of preventing disease, prolonging life and promoting health through the organized efforts of society.”
 
In the middle of the world-wide COVID-19 pandemic, public health has never been more important. I have always been passionate about public health and the positive impact it has on our population’s health. To that end, I have endeavoured to build capacity within my organization by creating a team of highly skilled and dedicated staff who are resilient, professional, accountable, passionate and thoughtful in providing public health programs and services to our community. I will miss my public health work and my staff when I retire in December!
 
Why do you give to Memorial? And why do you think it’s important?
I am very grateful for having been given the opportunity to have a career in medicine. It has opened up many doors for me and provided me with the foundations to build my knowledge and skills in epidemiology, communicable disease control, health promotion and advocacy, but more importantly to build an organization that can help improve the health of an entire population by using evidence-based public health strategies and working with community partners to address the determinants of health.
 
I have always believed in philanthropy as did my parents. I wanted to give back to the university and specifically the medical school for providing me the opportunity to achieve my goals, have a fulfilling career and meet many remarkable people along the way. I think that it is very important to give back to the medical school to support students to achieve their goals and improve the health of their communities.
 
I would encourage graduates to give monthly – it is easy, even small monthly amounts over the years add up and provide much-needed financial support to the medical school, particularly in these challenging times.