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Dr. Richard Heinzl

2017 program

Dr. Richard Heinzl

Professional Title: 
Founder, Doctors without Borders Canada
Inspiring New Innovations in Health Care Technology

Dr. Richard Heinzl is the founder of Doctors Without Borders Canada: the Nobel Peace Prize-winning organization that has inspired a movement among medical professionals to help the world’s most vulnerable populations. Modest and deeply passionate, he shares stories of ordinary people doing extraordinary things in the midst of war and other challenges—and how technology is changing the face of medicine around the globe. 

In 1988, just out of medical school, Richard Heinzl founded the first North American chapter of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières, the Nobel Prize-winning humanitarian organization. Shortly thereafter he became its first field volunteer, spending an extraordinary year in remote Cambodia. (These experiences are movingly captured in his memoir, Cambodia Calling.) Hundreds of volunteers have since followed in his footsteps, bringing their healing skills to help many of the world’s most vulnerable people. For his work, Heinzl has been named one of Report on Business’s Top 40 Under 40.
“If I can share one lesson with you, it would be to follow what you love. Any one of you can dream up a country you want to go to, or an idea that you want to make happen, or a program that you want to create ... there is a world waiting for you.”
— Richard Heinzl

Today, Dr. Heinzl continues to work with DWB/MSF on technology issues as an advisor on their Telemedicine Advisory Committee. He is also the new Global Medical Director of the Boston-based, Harvard-affiliated WorldCare International: a leader in providing access to quality second opinions from physicians at some of the world’s top academic medical centers. A renowned speaker, Dr. Heinzl shares his stories of ordinary people doing extraordinary things in the midst of war and other challenges. 


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