On May 29, 2019, Sheila Schuehlein accepted her new position as the Research Chair of Rural Health Coaching at Gateway Centre of Excellence in Rural Health. Sheila has served on the Board of Directors for Gateway since 2013 and currently serves as a Director and Program Lead of Lonely No more, a program aimed at tackling the problem of social isolation in rural seniors. In her new Chair position, she hopes to improve the well-being of rural residents through collaboratively developing and facilitating innovative research projects and community programs using a 'coaching' approach to care. Sheila incorporates a client-centred empowerment approach in all aspects of her work and believes coaching is a missing link in our current health system.
To date, Sheila has been a secondary investigator on four research projects with her findings published peer-reviewed scientific journals. In 2014, she graduated from Duke University, completing the Integrative Medicine Health Coach Program. She was among the first cohort to successfully pass the American Board of Medicine Certification Examination for Health and Wellness Coaches, and one of only two Health Coaches in Canada with this level of expertise.
Sheila is the West Regional Consultant for Elder Abuse Ontario, a non-profit organization that aims to make Ontario a healthier place for aging individuals. For nearly 25 years, Sheila has developed, facilitated and evaluated health promotion initiatives geared to age related issues. For over a decade, she has also served as VON Canada’s National Seniors Wellness Project's Manager. In this role, Sheila assisted communities across the country to develop exercise programs, such as the VON SMART (Seniors Maintaining Active Roles Together) Programs®. These programs help combat social isolation and improve balance, cardiovascular health and strength in senior citizens. In 2010, Sheila’s work was recognized in the Chief Public Health Officer’s ‘Report on Public Health in Canada’.
Gateway is happy to have Sheila join the team of Research Chairs, all working to deliver on the mission to improve health and quality of life for rural residents through education, communication, and research. To learn more about Gateway’s projects, visit www.gatewayruralhealth.ca
Written by: Sarah Versteeg BSc (Hons), MSc, Administrative Lead at Gateway