Harvey Skinner, a psychologist, is the inaugural Dean of the Faculty of Health at York University, July 1, 2006. York's new Faculty of Health is on an ambitious mission to be an integrative force for promoting health - locally and globally. Dr. Skinner is a Registered Psychologist in Ontario and a certified trainer in Motivational Interviewing. Previously, he was Professor and Chair of the Department of Public Health Sciences, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto. In September 2007 Dr Skinner was inducted as a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.
Dr. Skinner is the author or co-author of 7 books and over 150 articles and chapters. Three of his instruments are widely used internationally for the assessment of alcohol dependence (Alcohol Dependence Scale), drug problems (Drug Abuse Screening Test) and family functioning (Family Assessment Measure). Dr. Skinner was one of the first to focus on linking behavior change, organizational improvement and information technology (e-health), described in his book Promoting Health Through Organizational Change (2002). Dr. Skinner has been a pioneer in the use of computer technology for health assessment, and was one of the first to initiate a major program of research using the Internet for health promotion. The TeenNet and Youth Voices program created innovative websites for engaging youth in health promotion, including smoking prevention, gambling education, and youth action projects. Dr. Skinner has a special interest in global health. He is Chair of the Board of the Canada International Scientific Exchange Program (www.cisepo.ca) leading peacebuilding through health initiatives in the Middle East. In 2004 CISEPO received the Red Cross Power of Humanity Award The Centre of Excellence for Early Childhood Development (CEECD) identified his publication "Promoting Arab and Israeli cooperation: Peacebuilding through health initiatives" (Lancet, 2005, 365:1274-1277) as one of the top ten scientific articles in 2005 on early childhood development. He is currently a member of the Canadian Coalition for Public Health in the 21st Century (CCPH21), and the Canadian Coalition for Global Health Research (CCGHR).
From 1997-2005 he was a Member of the Board of the Canadian Public Health Association. Dr. Skinner has served as an expert advisor to the World Health Organization, U.S. Institute of Medicine, National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, National Institute on Drug Abuse, and Fogarty International Center. Dr. Skinner has broad experience in behavior change and organizational improvement. He leads workshops on lowering resistance and enhancing motivation for change at individual and organizational levels. His expertise is sought by health organizations, governments, universities and practitioners. From a personal perspective, Dr. Skinner is an avid spinner (used to run marathons) and he enjoys yoga, sailing and skiing. He has two children (Mark and Ana), two step-children (Russ and Jeff) and three grandchildren (Lena, Nate, Maya).