CSSSW Leadership Team
Cassandra Hanrahan - PhD, RSW
Cassandra Hanrahan is an Associate Professor, researcher, and Undergraduate Program Coordinator at Dalhousie University School of Social Work in Nova Scotia, Canada. Cassandra’s research on human animal interactions and animal informed social work urges us to reconceptualize the purpose and practice of social work today, broadening the circle of compassion and incorporating sustainability as a core value. By raising awareness of anthropocentrism and the prescient critique of humanism in social work, Cassandra advocates new ontologies of being and becoming. Over the past decade, she has taught several undergraduate and graduate independent studies on spirituality and social work. Cassandra is President of the Canadian Association for Spirituality and Social Work.
Dr. Heather M Boynton - PhD, MSW, RSW, HBPE
Dr. Heather M Boynton is an Assistant Professor of Social Work at the University of Calgary, an adjunct professor in Kinesiology at Lakehead University, and a member of the Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute. She also holds an Honours Bachelor of Physical and Health Education. She has been involved in the Canadian Society for Spirituality and Social Work since 2005. Her research interests are in spirituality, trauma, grief, and loss for with children, adolescents, and families, mental health and wellness, holistic practices, as well as interprofessional education and collaboration. She co-edited the book Trauma, Spirituality and Posttraumatic Growth in Clinical Social Work Practice, and she is a certified Reiki and Feng Shui Practitioner.
Board of Directors
Canadian Spirituality and Social Work is governed by a Board of Directors. These professionals bring skills, knowledge and passion for the work of CSSSW.
Susan Cadell - PhD, RSW
Susan Cadell, PhD, RSW (she/her) is a social work researcher and Professor in the School of Social Work at Renison University College at the University of Waterloo. Susan's research concerns death, dying and bereavement, particularly positive outcomes of caregiving and grief. She has been a member of CSSSW since attending the first meeting in 2001. Susan’s most recent projects concern grief in COVID, after Medical Assistance in Dying (MAiD), and healing tattoos.
Indrani Margolin - PhD, MSW, RSW
Indrani Margolin is an Associate Professor in the School of Social Work at the University of Northern British Columbia. Her research and teaching interests include: Consciousness & Mahavakyam Meditation, Holistic Therapeutic Practice (body, mind, spirit), Girls’ and Women’s Wellness (Bodyself), Arts-based Research, and Social Worker and Student Self-Care.
Dr. Indrani serves on the Northern FIRE (Feminist Institute for Research & Evaluation) Leadership Team at UNBC and the Canadian Society for Spirituality & Social Work.
Lucille Villaseñor-Caron - MSW, RSW, E-RYT, AYT
Lucille Villaseñor-Caron is a Registered Social Worker Psychotherapist, Certified Yoga Teacher and Ayurvedic Wellness Practitioner who offers psychotherapy, counselling and Ayurvedic Yoga therapy to individuals, groups, couples and families seeking support to overcome structural, interpersonal, mental, emotional, physical and/or spiritual challenges. Furthermore, she facilitates mental health related workshops, group therapy programs, and specialized employee-wellness and workplace-health services in private practice, and with both government and non-governmental agencies. It is her passion to be of service to others by creating a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere that supports happiness, wellbeing and healing. As the founder of Happiness & Wellness Therapy, she offers her services in three languages: English, French and Spanish through a wholistic and tailored approach to therapy that acknowledges practical tools, modern psychological theories and ancient wisdom from different cultures to support happiness, wellbeing and healing in a cross-cultural manner.
Hazel Kabibi Palmer - BSC
Hazel (she/her/hers) holds a degree in Neuroscience and Mental Health from Carleton University and is currently pursuing a post graduate BSW from the School of Social Work at Renison University College.
Hazel has a keen interest in social work and spirituality and hopes to continue studies in the field of Social Work.
Buetta Warkentin - MSW, RSW, MTS
Buetta Warkentin is an Associate Professor of Social Work at Booth University College in Winnipeg, Manitoba, where she has filled both teaching faculty and field coordinator roles over the last 15 years. She is currently a member of the Manitoba College of Social Workers Board of Trustees. Buetta’s joint degrees in theological studies and social work paved the way for a keen interest in the intersection of spirituality and religion and social work practice. She has developed and taught a course on spirituality and social work for undergraduate students several times, and has had good success with incorporating mindfulness practice in the classroom. Current research involvements include exploring how social work practitioners’ spiritual/religious worldviews impact their practice.
Sherry Dale - MSW, RSW
Sherry Dale is originally from Winnipeg, Manitoba, and has been living in Ontario since 1986. Recently, Sherry moved to the beautiful little city of Guelph, Ontario. Sherry has been an Intuitive Therapist in the Toronto, Canada area since 1997, having spent time working in clinics and agencies with the last ten years in full-time Private Practice. Sherry sees individuals and couples, usually first concentrating on releasing emotional triggers.
After many years specializing in Infertility Counselling and Training, most of Sherry’s work now has at least one foot in treating trauma and phobias. For more than 25 years Sherry has used the trauma treatment Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and she LOVES the results her clients achieve with it!
For the past few years, Sherry has been developing a protocol that aims to release subconscious trauma. This may include forgotten/repressed trauma, past-life and intergenerational (inherited) trauma. Sherry’s goal is to develop a training program to teach others how to use the technique.
Kim Sedore - RSW
Kim Sedore, pronouns she/her, is a queer-identified settler living in T’karonto, Williams Treaties (1923) territory. Kim is a Registered Social Worker, working in private practice supporting individuals and families to navigate life and cultivate connection. Kim’s interests in, appreciation of, and curiosity about spirituality and faith have long roots reaching back to Sunday school, summer camp, and loving nature in all seasons. As an undergrad and graduate student, academics focused on philosophy and comparative religion.
Kim’s research interests have included connection in land-based communities, north-south relations and colonialism in Canada, the perception and experience of ritual in secular settings, and quest/retreat patterns in eco-tourism. As a mental health practitioner, Kim is acutely aware of the importance of belonging and values reciprocity in care and wellbeing. For Kim, her decolonial journey is a healing journey and the path is life-long.
She’s drawn to the CSSSW for the commitment to open dialogue about spirituality and social work and the value of inclusion.
Theresa Smith - BSW
Theresa Smith (they/she) holds a Bachelor of Social Work from the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) with Indigenous-based electives and practicums. They are currently pursuing a Master of Social Work at UNBC.
Theresa’s areas of interest are eco-feminism, decolonization, and how wellness is impacted systemically. They focus specifically on queerness, ADHD, and the role of spirituality and wholistic approaches with healing in a counselling context.
Stefani Kolochuk - BSW
Stefani (she/her) was raised on the rural prairies and is part of the Ukrainian diaspora.
Stefani earned a Bachelor of Social Work degree from the University of Manitoba in 2015, and was inspired by Indigenous knowledges, Feminist perspectives, and use of spirituality within social work practice.
She worked in the field of mental health and substance use, community based youth work, and Indigenous Child Welfare since approximately 2010.
Presently, she is enrolled in her final semester of the University of Northern British Columbia, Master of Social Work program and her area of research is ‘Exploring social workers spiritual meaning reconstruction processes after the unanticipated death of a client’. She holds active registration with the British Columbia College of Social Work and the British Columbia Association of Social Work.
In her downtime, she enjoys road trips, exploring the west coast rainforest, and lots of quality time with friends and family.
Meital Siva-Jain - BA, RSW
Meital has been interested in social justice and spirituality since a young age. Her work with immigrant women in the areas of sexual violence and consent made her integrate the two and explore spiritual practices for healing and growth. She studied Buddhism, Zen, and Judaism and spent four years studying meditation in India. Currently, Meital manages the outreach services of an Edmonton non-profit organization and is presently enrolled in the University of Calgary’s MSW program.
The Canadian Society for Spirituality and Social Work is committed to being inclusive.
CSSSW acknowledges there are numerous and diverse ways of knowing, being and practicing spirituality, which range from expressions of spirituality independent of specific belief systems, to those intertwined with religious beliefs and/or cultures. Some of these activities/traditions may overlap, and others are independent of each other. The aim in CSSSW is to provide opportunities for diverse, respectful, and safer expressions of spirituality.