This February, all month long, we’re honouring the work of 28 inspiring leaders. Women who are drawing upon and celebrating their culture while making a lasting difference in their community using their gifts. From authors and teachers, CEOs to entrepreneurs, not-for-profit directors, artists, and more, these women are changing the face of leadership.

These are truly women to watch and veza community is so pleased to share their brilliance.

May their stories inspire YOU to rise.

Meet Dr. Sonya Kashyap.

Dr. Kashyap is a doctor, scientist, activist, and innovator. She is passionate about helping couples and individuals create families, especially with regard to empowering women to understand their reproductive options, which include egg freezing.

She did her fellowship training in New York at Cornell University Medical College—a world premiere IVF clinic—under the mentorship of Dr. Zev Rosenwaks. With thousands of cases arriving annually from all over the world, she learned from the pioneers how to achieve the best outcomes even in the most difficult cases.

Before arriving in Vancouver, Dr. Kashyap had been recruited onto faculty at the University of California at San Francisco, which is one of the top 3 ranked medical schools in the US and a National Institutes of Health recognized Center for Excellence in Women’s Health Care.

Board certified both in Canada and the US in Obstetrics and Gynecology, as well as Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility, Dr. Kashyap was also the recipient of a CIHR (Canadian Institutes of Health Research) New Investigators awards in women’s health for her work in assisted reproductive technology, fertility preservation, cancer outcomes, and fertility and patient education/decision tools.

Dr. Kashyap has been invited to speak internationally and is an author and recipient of many research and teaching awards. She is most proud of how these experiences have translated into success for her patients at the Genesis Fertility Centre.

So tell us, Dr. Kashyap: What inspires you most? What motivates you to get up every morning?

My patients, my staff, and the opportunity to create families while taking exceptional care of people.

How do you feel that your actions teach or inspire others?

Mediocrity is not acceptable when you hold such important outcomes in your hands. Consistency, attention to excellence, and compassion are necessary in what we do. Pay it forward: for those who show the aptitude and willingness to learn, teach them so that knowledge and skills become self-perpetuating.

What is one change you’d like to see in the world?

A world where women can compete fairly, and everyone who wants a family can have one.

Which of your contributions to date have given you the greatest sense of pride?

There are many.

I completed my fellowship at Cornell Medical College in NYC, which was Mecca for IVF and incredibly competitive to achieve. I was then a clinician scientist and worked tirelessly to improve both clinical care and our field.

At a young age I was awarded a career investigator award from the CIHR for gender health. I was actively headhunted and recruited to UCSF NIH Centre of Excellence in Women’s Health, which is one of the top 3 schools in the US and the top HIH funded department of ObGyn.

Ultimately, however, I returned to employ all of these skills and knowledge in Vancouver and became the Medical Director of Genesis Fertility Centre in 2013. We immediately increased success rates by 10 percent and introduced many firsts. I believe my experiences allowed us to create a centre that raised the bar for patient care in IVF and advocates for the patient.

We hope you’ve enjoyed getting to know Dr. Kashyap! Learn more about her work and stay connected via social media @Genesisivfbc

Ready to RISE as a leader in your own right?

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