Professor Josephine Etowa

Friday 26 April 2024

The Canadian Public Health Association (CPHA) has announced its 2024 meritorious award winners. Among them is Ottawa’s leading researcher and nursing professor, Nigerian-born Josephine Etowa. Below is the announcement from the CPHA.


Josephine B. Etowa, PhD, RN, RM, FWACN, FAAN, FCAN, FCAHS 

Professor Josephine Etowa is a global leader in research and action to reduce health inequities faced by Black communities and transform health systems in Canada and abroad. Her community-based research (CBR) program consists of studies on health equity, perinatal health, COVID-19, HIV/AIDS, nurses’ work life, and community nursing. With hundreds of scholarly publications, workshops, and talks, and dozens of accolades, Professor Etowa’s scholarly record speaks for itself and makes her community contributions even more impressive. Her seminal contributions to understanding the determinants of health inequities and healthcare access, and innovative solutions to address health inequities along ethno-racial lines, promote healthy behaviours for perinatal health, enhance cultural competence, and improve workforce diversity management influence health policy in Canada and abroad. She helped develop a centre that offers graduate degrees in public health, midwifery, and nursing in Nigeria. Through this centre, she helped to build health research capacity in that country and foster evidence-informed policies. Underpinning her CBR in Canada are authentic engagement, capacity building, and integrated knowledge mobilization with Black communities and stakeholders. She has established two community organizations that advance health equity for Black Canadians and a CBR lab focused on equity, transformative change, reciprocal mentoring, and community empowerment. She has mentored over 100 Black people in community, many of whom now hold influential positions in Canada’s provincial and federal governments. To further community-led action on health, her current research aims to develop best practice guidelines for research, data management, and knowledge mobilization to be genuinely led by Black communities.


The Ron Draper Health Promotion Award is presented to an individual, group or organization engaged in community work to acknowledge a significant contribution to health promotion to build healthy public policy, create environments that support health, enable community action, enhance personal skills, and/or re-orient health services. Nominees are not required to be a CPHA member.