Canadian Medical Hall of Fame

“He is a tireless, focused researcher.”

© Irma Coucill and CMHF
2013 Inductee

Dr. Antoine Hakim

Born: 
April 30, 1942
Education: 
MD - Albany Medical College; PhD - Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Through his work at the University of Ottawa’s Neuroscience Research Institute and his creation of the Canadian Stroke Network, Dr. Hakim has revolutionized the way strokes are being researched and treated in Canada and around the globe. He was among the first researchers to use animal models to mimic human stroke symptoms, which greatly contributed to our understanding of stroke.

After obtaining his medical degree at the Albany Medical College in 1975, Dr. Hakim chose to focus his research on strokes, an unpopular area of study at the time. Completing his residency at the Montreal Neurological Institute and later becoming a professor at McGill University, he continued his stroke research using animal models that mimicked stroke conditions, and he was amongst the first researchers ever to do so.

Through his work and study at McGill, Dr. Hakim was better able to understand the process and damage caused by strokes which in turn led to a greater understanding of the types of treatments needed and their timing.

In 1992, Dr. Hakim moved to the nation’s capital where he became chair of the University of Ottawa’s Neurology Department and the director of the university’s newly established Neuroscience Research Institute. There he successfully recruited many talented young researchers and clinical investigators by offering an attractive balance of clinical application and research.

One of Dr. Hakim’s crowning achievements is his leadership in the creation of the Canadian Stroke Network (CSN). Comprised of researchers, clinicians and healthcare workers in partnership with universities, governments and non-profit organizations, the CSN has been committed to the common goal of alleviating the burden of strokes on patients and their families, and providing the public with awareness on stroke prevention. As CEO and Scientific Director of the CSN, Dr. Hakim has been a pioneer in the fight against strokes, working with a team to champion the Canadian Stroke Strategy, a plan that most Canadian provinces have adopted. Dr. Hakim also helped develop the European Stroke Network in 2005.

In recognition of his hard work and dedication, Dr. Hakim has been honoured through various awards including the award for Excellence by the Canadian Stroke Consortium in 2000, the Ottawa Life Science Council Career Achievement Award in 2004, and was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2007.