In 2005, Lee Durdon, frustrated and overwhelmed with her many Sjögren’s symptoms and the lack of resources and information for patients in Canada, volunteered to be an Ontario support group leader with the U.S. Sjögren’s Syndrome Foundation.

She organized support group meetings and educational seminars. With the support of her family and doctors, she reached out to patients and professionals and realized that more than local support was needed.

Determined to make a difference for newly diagnosed patients and people living with the disease, in 2006 Mrs. Durdon formed the Sjögren’s Society of Canada to improve conditions for patients and to encourage research into this complicated and overlooked disease in Canada.

In November, 2008, the Sjögren’s Society of Canada became a Canadian nonprofit organization. Our Federal Registered Charity number is 81858 8956 RR0001.


To provide support and encouragement to all who have Sjögren’s Syndrome, and to provide information and education to patients, the public and the medical community as to the symptoms, condition and research findings.


  • Provide patient support and education
  • Increase professional and public awareness
  • Support and raise funds for Sjögren’s related medical research and a cure


Our Board of Directors is comprised of concerned citizens, healthcare professionals and Sjögren’s patients. The responsibilities of the Board of Directors are to determine the Society’s mission, set goals and priorities, set policies and plan for the Society’s future. The Board of Directors provides overall governance of the Society’s activity.

  • President and Founder: Lee Durdon
  • Vice-President: C. Lisa Prokopich, O.D.M.Sc
  • Treasurer: Jerry Sollazzo
  • Arthur Bookman, MD, FRCPC
  • Barbara Caffery, OD, PhD
  • Allegro Marafon
  • Annette McKinnon
  • Mary Lou Rashid, BScN, RN, MEd
  • Leslie Laing, BSc, B.Ed, MS., PhD (Microbiology and Immunology), DDS., MSc. (Prosthodontics), FRCD(C)


Our Medical Advisory Board is comprised of leading physicians, dentists and ophthalmologists who will monitor Sjögren’s related legislation, direct professional educational programs and research into Sjögren’s, and foster a supportive community for researchers.

The Medical Advisory Board is responsible for promoting the proper understanding of Sjögren’s Syndrome, monitoring medical and scientific progress in Sjögren’s Syndrome and advising the Sjögren’s Society of Canada Board of Directors on all scientific and medical matters. It recommends the scientific and research goals of the Society.

  • Co-Chairperson: Arthur Bookman, MD, FRCP
  • Co-Chairperson: Ann Parke, MD
  • Larry Allen, MD, M.B.FRCSC
  • Izchak Barzilay, D.D.S., Cert.Prostho., M.S., FRCD(C)
  • Barbara Caffery, M.S., O.D., F.A.A.O
  • Leslie P. Laing, B.Sc., B.Ed., M.Sc., Ph.D., D.D.S., M.Sc. (Prosthodontics), FRCD(C)
  • Miriam Grushka, MSc, D.D.S., PhD
  • Rookaya Mather, MD, FRCSC
  • Mary Messieh, MD, FRCPC
  • Sherry Rohekar, MD, FRCPC
  • Allan Slomovic, M.A., MD, FRCSC
  • C. Douglas Smith, MD, FRCPC
  • Doron Sommer, MD, FRCSC