JDRF Proudly Announces the Appointment of New International Board of Directors Vice Chair

New York and Toronto, March 13, 2024 — JDRF, the leading global type 1 diabetes (T1D), research and advocacy organization, today announced the appointment of Matt Varey as the new vice chair of the non-profit’s International Board of Directors. Matt, of Oakville, Ontario, is the first Canadian and first person from outside of the United States to hold the vice chair position. He is a senior executive at Royal Bank of Canada, the country’s largest financial institution, where he is responsible for more than 4,500 Canada-based employees who manage personal investments, mortgage financing, and group benefits totaling more than $100 billion annually.

“It’s an exciting time at JDRF, filled with scientific breakthroughs and real opportunities to advance our mission, creating a world without type 1 diabetes,” said Aaron J. Kowalski, Ph.D., CEO of JDRF. “We are delighted that Matt is taking on the role of vice chair of JDRF’s International Board of Directors. I look forward to Matt’s partnership as we amplify JDRF’s work throughout the world.”

Matt has been a committed JDRF volunteer since 2001 and is an ardent supporter of JDRF’s efforts to find a cure for T1D and improving the lives of people living with the condition. In addition to his work on JDRF’s International Board of Directors, Matt serves on the board of JDRF Canada.

“I have been a JDRF volunteer for more than 20 years and am honored to step into the role of vice chair of JDRF’s International Board of Directors,” said Matt Varey. “I am excited to work in partnership with others around the globe to advance JDRF’s incredible purpose, and to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs and cures for type 1 diabetes.”

Matt and his wife Dr. Andrea Jack are the parents to four adult children. He is a graduate of McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario.

Varey will be joined in his term of board leadership by Lisa Fishbone Wallack, the newly appointed chair of JDRF’s International Board of Directors. Lisa is an attorney by training and resides in the Boston area.

About JDRF

JDRF is the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. Our mission is to accelerate life-changing breakthroughs to cure, prevent and treat T1D and its complications. We are an organization built on a grassroots model of people connecting in their local communities, collaborating regionally for efficiency and broader fundraising impact, and uniting on a national stage to pool resources, passion, and energy. JDRF partners across the full T1D development pipeline – including academic institutions, governments and corporations – to fund research and advocate for the delivery of innovative therapies to people living with T1D. Our staff and volunteers throughout Canada and five international affiliates are dedicated to advocacy, community engagement and our vision of a world without T1D. For more information, please visit jdrf.ca.

For media inquiries or further information, please contact:

Ruth Kapelus
National Content & Media Relations Manager, JDRF Canada
T. 647.789.2322 E. rkapelus@jdrf.ca

About Type 1 Diabetes (T1D)    

T1D is an autoimmune condition that causes the pancreas to make very little insulin, or none at all. This leads to dependence on insulin therapy and the risk of short or long-term complications, including highs and lows in blood sugar; damage to the kidneys, eyes, nerves, and heart; and even death if left untreated. Globally, it impacts nearly 9 million people. Many believe T1D is only diagnosed in childhood and adolescence, but diagnosis in adulthood is common and accounts for nearly 50% of all T1D diagnoses. The onset of T1D has nothing to do with diet or lifestyle. While its causes are not yet entirely understood, scientists believe that both genetic factors and environmental triggers are involved. There is currently no cure for T1D

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