PIMS Equity Diversity and Inclusion Committee (EDIC)

PIMS EDIC Rationale and Purpose Comment

PIMS acknowledges that equity, diversity and inclusion strengthen the mathematical community by increasing the impact and relevance of research; widening the pool of qualified potential participants; and enhancing the integrity of the programs.


The programs and groups we support should promote and develop a rich research community, accessible to every member of the community. The purpose of the PIMS EDI Committee (EDIC) is to develop implementable, explicit strategies to monitor and improve equity, diversity and inclusivity of the Institute and its activities, and potentially impact the wider mathematical sciences community. We strive to support inclusivity at all stages from K to retirement recognizing that gains made through support of one level can often be impacted by a weakness at another. We furthermore recognize that clear, successful policies are required by funding agencies. Within the mandate we consider inequities due to gender, sexuality, ethnicity, and disabilities.



Please note, we are in the process of gathering profiles for EDI committee members.


Dr Laleh Behjat is a professor at the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Calgary, Canada. Her research focuses on developing mathematical techniques and software tools for automating the design of digital integrated circuits. She has won several awards for her work including the 1st and 2nd places in International Symposium on Physical Design Placement contests, 3rd place in the Design Automation Perspective Challenge, and Schulich School of Engineering Research Productivity Award.
Dr. Behjat acted as an academic advisor for of Google Technical Development Guide and was a member of the Google’s Council on Computer Science Education. She is an Associate Editor of the IEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design of Integrated Circuits, ACM Transactions on Design Automation of Electronic Systems, and Optimization in Engineering from Springer
Dr. Behjat is passionate about increasing the status of women in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). She was the recipient of the 2015 Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) Women in Engineering Champion Award, Association of Computing Machinery, Special Interest Group in Design Automation Service Award in 2014 and 2017 and 2017 Killam Graduate Student Supervision and Mentorship Award. Her team, Schulich Engineering Outreach Team, was also the recipient of the ASTech Leadership Excellence in Science and Technology Public Awareness Award in 2017.

Laleh Behjat


Prof. Susan Cooper is an Associate Professor at the University of Manitoba. She was born and raised in Regina, Saskatchewan. Susan received her M.Sc. and Ph.D. from Queen's University and has held post-doctoral positions at Syracuse University and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her research explores the intersections of Commutative Algebra, Combinatorics, and Geometry. She is especially interested in studying the algebraic structure via numerical invariants of objects living in geometric and combinatorial settings. Susan has been very active in organizing numerous conferences and workshops, including the Prairie Mathematics Colloquium. She also co-edited the book "Connections Between Algebra, Combinatorics, and Geometry" in the Spring PROMS series. In addition, she has received teaching awards in recognition of her instructional efforts. Susan has a passion for K–12 mathematics education and has been deeply involved in outreach activities. Most recently, she founded MAGIC which is a mathematics camp for grades 7 and 8 young women held at the University of Manitoba.

Susan Cooper


Prof. Shawn Desaulniers is an instructor in the Department of Mathematical and Statistical Sciences at the University of Alberta. He is a Metis Canadian who grew up in Thunder Bay. He received his Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics from Lakehead University and PhD from the University of Alberta. Shawn held teaching positions at Okanagan College and the University of British Columbia before returning to the University of Alberta in 2017.
In addition to teaching mathematics courses in his home department, Dr. Desaulniers also supports young instructors with professional development opportunities and serves as an Outreach Coordinator. He has been actively involved with Indigenous communities, where his work includes initiating a number of math programs for Indigenous youth such as diversity in math camps, SNAP Math Fairs, and tutoring sessions.
Dr. Desaulniers also works closely with the Faculty of Education’s Aboriginal Teacher Education Program (ATEP) and has recently been award the Faculty of Science's Innovation in Teaching Award. He has also organized several conferences relating to mathematics and mathematical education and is currently serves on the Mathematical and Statistical Sciences EDI Committee, the PIMS EDI Committee, and the CMS Reconciliation in Mathematics Committee.

Shaun Desaulniers


Prof. Greg Martin (he/him) is a professor in the Department of Mathematics at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. His research is in analytic number theory, with a focus on comparative theory ("prime number races") and on multiplicative problems from the classical tradition. He received his BSc from Stanford University and his MSc and PhD from the University of Michigan, and held postdoctoral positions at the Institute for Advanced Study and the University of Toronto before coming to UBC. He is a two-time winner of the MAA's Lester R. Ford Prize for expository writing and a winner of a UBC Faculty of Science Killam Teaching Prize. He is currently the Chair of the UBC Mathematics Department's Equity Committee.

Greg Martin


Prof. Karen Meagher is a full professor in Mathematics at the University of Regina. Her research is in discrete math, with a focus on algebraic graph theory and design theory. She completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Alberta and a masters at the University of Waterloo. She worked with a MITACS group of SFU, and did a PhD at the University of Ottawa. She also completed a post-doctoral fellowship at Waterloo before starting at the University of Regina.
She co-author a graduate texts in mathematics, Erdős-Ko-Rado Theorems: Algebraic Approaches. She was the acting associate dean at graduate studies for a year and a half. Currently she is a member of the NSERC evaluation committee for pure math.
Karen believes that Equity, Diversity and Inclusion is important in many ways. It is important for young students and researchers who want to become mathematicians. It is important for the current generation of mathematicians to be fulfill their potential. It is important to have a diverse group of people working in the field to grow and develop. She is optimistic that this committee can support the mathematics community in implementing best practises for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. These changes can make a dramatic difference, not just for young researcher, but for everyone.

Karen Meagher


Prof. Marni Mishna (chair) is a Professor of Mathematics at Simon Fraser University and serves as Deputy Director of the Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences. Originally from Edmonton, Marni successively obtained degrees in pure mathematics from the University of Waterloo, Simon Fraser University and the Université du Québec à Montréal. She held an NSERC Postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Bordeaux and the Fields Institute in Toronto before returning to Simon Fraser as faculty in 2005. Her distinctions include an NSERC University Faculty Award, and numerous invited positions in France. She has served on the NSERC Scholarships and Fellowships committee
Marni is an expert in combinatorics. Her research investigates interactions between discrete structures and many diverse areas such as representation theory, functional equations, and algebraic geometry. Her specialty is the development of analytic tools to study the large-scale behaviour of discrete objects. She is a leader within the international combinatorics community, and has organized several major conferences, workshops and schools.

Marni Mishna



Ruth Situma is the Program Manager for the Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences. Ruth manages the annual PIMS programs and summer project. Prior to joining PIMS She was a researcher at the Guelph Institute for Community Engaged Learning and with the Chief Nursing Officer at Vancouver Coastal Health. She has a Masters in Political Sciences from Guelph University and an MBA from Simon Fraser University. Her research interests include government policy, strategy and entrepreneurship in bottom of the pyramid (BOP) Markets. An avid runner, she is currently a running coach in training.

Ruth Situma


Prof. Chris Soteros is a Professor of Mathematics at the University of Saskatchewan. Her research focusses on models of polymers. She is developing mathematical and computational tools for studying how a polymer becomes entangled or disentangled, as well as how it undergoes other conformational or “phase” changes. One important application of this work is towards understanding enzyme action on DNA. Certain enzymes disentangle DNA in the cell to allow vital cellular processes such as replication to proceed, however, exactly how and where the enzymes act remains an open problem. Viewing DNA simply as a large molecule made of repeated molecular units (i.e. as a polymer), polymer models can be used to better understand this enzyme action.

Chris Soteros