About NOSM Education Research Communities

Dr. Roger Strasser

Professor of Rural Health
Dean and CEO


Dr. Roger Strasser is a leader in the global reform of health professional education. Recognizing the importance of context and community in medical education and research, Dr. Strasser has gained an international reputation for developing and refining novel strategies to train health professionals in and for rural communities. As a result of his formative work in his field, Dr. Strasser has become one of the world’s foremost authorities in rural, socially accountable medical education, as well as a sought-after speaker and advisor.  

In September 2002, Dr. Strasser was selected to lead the creation of the first medical school in Canada in over 35 years—the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM). NOSM is the first Canadian medical school established with an explicit social accountability mandate to improve the health of the people and communities of the region it serves. Thanks to its unique model of distributed, community-engaged medical learning, NOSM is supporting recruitment, retention, and socio-economic development in historically underserved communities across the geographically vast region of Northern Ontario. In ten short years, NOSM has grown from a little-known school in rural Canada to a leader that other medical schools across the world look to emulate—a testament to both Dr. Strasser’s leadership, and the strength of the team that he has assembled.

In addition to his role as Dean and CEO at NOSM, Dr. Strasser is one of the few Professors of Rural Health in the world. He is leading a growing body of research relating to socially accountable health professional education, recruitment and retention of health professionals, and rural health service delivery models.

Prior to moving to Northern Ontario in 2002 with his wife of over 30 years, Dr. Sarah Strasser, and their five children, Dr. Roger Strasser was the Head of the Monash University School of Rural Health in Australia and had an international role with the World Organization of Family Doctors (WONCA) as Chair of the Working Party on Rural Practice from 1992-2004. 

Among his many accomplishments, Dr. Strasser has been honoured with the following accolades throughout his career:

  • Special Award for Outstanding Health Professional Educators (2014) for work in education that has had a strong impact on the improvement of health care.
  • Member of the Order of Australia (2011) for service to medicine, through improving the health care of people living in rural and remote communities.
  • Monash University Fellowship (2011) in recognition of his professional distinction and outstanding service.
  • Ontario Hospital Association Small, Rural and Northern Award of Excellence (2006).
  • Life Fellowship Award, Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (2006) for outstanding and meritorious service to rural and remote medicine in Australia.
  • Monash University’s Roger Strasser Auditorium (named in 2005) pays tribute to his contribution to the development of rural medical education programs in Australia and around the world.
  • Fellow, World Organization of Family Doctors (WONCA) (2004) in recognition of outstanding service to WONCA and family medicine around the world.


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