Navi Mental Health Wayfinder
Meet Inlight’s Director of Strategy and Operations, Sarah De La Rue

Dr. Sarah De La Rue has extensive experience developing and delivering on research strategy, and building relationships with partners to promote the impact of health research. Since completing her PhD and postdoctoral work in Neuroscience at the University of Bristol, Sarah has followed her passion for research strategy and knowledge mobilization, starting off by working as the commissioning editor for the reviews journal Current Opinion in Investigational Drugs, then building research strategy and communications with stakeholders at the University of Virginia.

From 2012 to 2022, Dr De La Rue led the development and delivery of strategy for the CIHR Institute of Human Development, Child and Youth Health IHDCYH, building both the previous and refreshed strategic plans Healthy Foundations of Life, and now the most recent Better Beginnings, Vibrant Childhoods, Empowered Youth – Research that makes a difference. Programs included international initiatives such as the Healthy Life Trajectories Initiative, partnered with 3 international funding agencies and the WHO, tailored capacity building initiatives such as the Clinician-Investigator teams in Obstetrics and Maternal-Fetal medicine, and the popular IHDCYH Talks competition that supports dissemination of videos with evidence-based messages for lay audiences.

As Executive Director of Inspiring Healthy Futures, a vision and priorities developed during and in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and it’s impacts on children, youth and families, Sarah led a multi-organisation team in the development of the strategy in partnership with over 100 organisations across Canada. The resulting framework supported collaborative partners to conceptualize and implement diverse projects aligned to the vision, spanning research investment, advocacy and community engagement.

Since moving to U of T, Sarah has supported strategy, partnerships and operations at two institutional initiatives at UofT. As Director of Strategy and Partnerships with the Precision Medicine Initiative (PRiME) at the University of Toronto, Sarah developed the strategy for the renewal of PRiME, moving it forward into an exciting eco-system wide role that has expanded inter-disciplinary research across the University, but also brought in affiliated research hospitals and commercialization partners such as TIAP and adMare.

With Inlight, Sarah is excited to be taking on the role of Director of Strategy and Operations, supporting Inlight to expand their inter-disciplinary approach to research in post-secondary mental health and wellness. In this role, Sarah will build student, staff and faculty networks and programming that will develop collaboration, and grow both a tri-campus and a global approach to research.

To learn more about the Inlight Team, including the faculty, staff, and students we work with, please visit the link below.