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Joanne Liu’s Medical Humanitarianism

The sky’s the limit for Dr. Joanne Liu, an humanitarian and physician that aspired to reach across borders. Liu became the president of MSF (Médecins Sans Frontières) in 2013.

Dr. Liu holds an M.D, C.M degree from McGill University and a Masters in Health Leadership from the same university. She later attended the Université de Montréal for a specialty in paediatrics, focusing on paediatric emergency care at the New York University School of Medicine.

Joanne’s official title is a paediatric emergency physician. Now let’s tie in the humanitarian aspect of her life and career.

Junior year of college was a highlight in Joanne’s life as she had the opportunity to go to Mali! She went with Canadian Crossroads International, which sparked her interest in international paediatrics. Her passion for work oversees earned her a spot at MSF that allowed her to progress in her career, going to Kenya to work in Somali refugee camps and then on to conflict zones such as Sudan.

Dr. Liu has a drive and spirit that have helped her to overcome the obstacles in her path such as working in dangerous situations (for example, hearing sounds of gunshots at night!). She became President of the Board of Directors of MSF Canada from 2003-2009. She became the International President of MSF in Geneva in 2013. During her tenure, she advocated at the UN for greater mobilization by member states during the Ebola outbreak in 2014, and spoke out against the bombing of a MSF hospital in Afghanistan by American forces.

Joanne has been awarded the National Order of Quebec and was one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people of 2015.

Dr. Joanne Liu‘s work in global health is an inspiration to us all and continues to positively impact lives around the world.



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