McMaster University

McMaster University

Faculty of
Health Sciences

Renowned schizophrenia expert to lead Hamilton psychiatric services

Published: November 9 , 2006
Dr. Robert B. Zipursky
Dr. Robert B. Zipursky is the new chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences.

A renowned Canadian clinician scientist is returning to Hamilton to head up the city’s psychiatric services.

Effective Jan. 1, 2007, Dr. Robert B. Zipursky will be chair of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences, and hold the Morgan Firestone Chair in Psychiatry at the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine, McMaster University. In addition, Zipursky will be chief of psychiatry for both St. Joseph’s Healthcare (Hamilton) and Hamilton Health Sciences.

Trained at McMaster as a physician, Zipursky is currently at the University of Toronto where he has roles as a professor of psychiatry; head of the schizophrenia program; vice-chair for research; and the Tapscott Chair in Schizophrenia Studies in the Department of Psychiatry. He is also the clinical director of the Schizophrenia Program at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH).

With a well-established and extensive clinical research program for the study of first episode schizophrenia, Zipursky’s major interests are in the early identification and treatment of schizophrenia and the study of schizophrenia using brain imaging technologies. He will be recruiting a team of schizophrenia researchers to work with him at McMaster.

"This is a home run for Hamilton. Dr. Zipursky’s work is important and he’s already had impressive accomplishments in his career. We look forward to welcoming both him and his team," said Dr. John Kelton, dean and vice-president of McMaster’s Faculty of Health Sciences, and dean of the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine.

"Following an international search and the unanimous endorsement of the search committee, we are delighted to welcome Dr. Zipursky to lead our mental health programs, said Dr Kevin Smith, President and CEO, St Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton.

Zipursky, 50, received his Bachelor’s degree from Cornell University in 1979 and his MD from McMaster University in 1982. He completed his residency training in psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh followed by research fellowship training in the area of brain imaging at Stanford University. He joined the faculty at the University of Toronto in 1991.

He was the recipient of a Young Investigator Award from the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression - NARSAD (1988), the John Cleghorn Memorial Award for Excellence and Leadership in Clinical Research from the Canadian Psychiatric Association (2002), and the Michael Smith Award for Schizophrenia from the Schizophrenia Society of Canada (2003).

The Schizophrenia Program at CAMH, directed by Zipursky, is recognized as one of the top research programs of its kind in the world.

Zipursky follows Dr. Richard Swinson who has been chair of McMaster’s Department of Psychiatry and Behavioural Neurosciences since October 1997.

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