Team

Shannon Dames

Shannon Dames

, RN, MPH, EdD

Senior Creator, Research and Development

Dr. Shannon Dames spearheaded the development of the theoretical framework for Roots to Thrive and in combination with her role at Vancouver Island University (VIU), she serves as the Director of Research and Development for Roots to Thrive. She also wears the hat of the VIU Chair of the Psychedelic-assisted Therapy Graduate Certificate Program, as a VIU Nursing Professor, and as a Health Professional Investigator for the Michael Smith Foundation of Health Research with a focus on resilience development and psychedelic therapy research.

Other Management

Phil Dames

Director of Operations

Phil comes to the team with a focus on developing the structure to guide and inform the operations of the program. Phil has a long history of working with families and corporations, managing nearly every facet of their financial wellbeing. Phil’s passion surrounds men’s health and the cultivation...
Pam Kryskow

MD

Head of Psychedelic Medicine

Dr. Pamela Kryskow is the medical lead for the Roots To Thrive Program. She comes to the team with a wealth of experience in conventional medicine augmented by her knowledge and research of psychedelic-assisted therapies and microdosing, placing her at the forefront of this new, rapidly emerging ...

MD

Head of Psychedelic Psychiatry

Dr. Watler completed his MA in Psychology at Lakehead University, prior to completing Medical School at McMaster in 1991. Following medical school, Dr. Watler completed his residency in psychiatry at Dalhousie University. Dr. Walter relocated to Duncan BC in 2001, working with Island Health in di...
Geraldine Manson

Lead Elder

In my role as a VIU Elder-in-Residence, I work directly with students and Faculty/Professors in Health and Human Services programs at VIU and the Shq’apthut/Gathering Place. I share my Traditional Knowledge to work with all programs within the Health & Human Services and within the Shq’apthut...
Wes Taylor

Organization and Team Development Lead

Wes’s core practice is recognizing the heart and beauty in everyone.  Joining in the early days of the Roots to Thrive community was therefore a no-brainer.  During the ‘80s and ‘90s, he worked as a therapist in addiction and trauma recovery in the US and Australia. He focused on providing advanc...
Krys Sciberras

RCC

Head of Research and Development, Alumni Facilitator

Krys comes to RTT with 25 years of experience in Mental Health and Substance Use in public health care settings and private practice. She has had the privilege of living on the traditional territory of the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nations for the past 16 years; and has been working with Island Health ...
Tamara Pearl

MA, RCC

Research and Development

As a Registered Clinical Counsellor, Tamara has worked and taught in the field of trauma healing for over 20 years, using somatic therapies, expressive arts therapy, EMDR, and other modalities, in a wide variety of settings. She is particularly interested in healing personal, intergenerational, c...