Nancy Lightfoot

Affiliated Scientist

Dr. Nancy Lightfoot is an Associate Professor in the School of Rural and Northern Health at Laurentian University in Sudbury. She has training in microbiology and community health epidemiology and has over 25 years research experience. Her research interests include: a) issues relevant to northern and rural health, b) environmental health (e.g., health effects related to wildfires; emergency preparedness for wildfires and other emergencies; development and evaluation of community resources for emergency preparedness; recreational water quality and related health effects and recreational water quality guidelines; environmental health policy), c) determination and evaluation of optimal research methods with various populations, d) health services research (e.g., impact of long distance travel for care, client satisfaction, recruitment and retention of health care professionals, and program evaluation), e) risk factors for chronic diseases, particularly various cancers, g) occupational health (surveillance, aetiology, quality of worklife, recruitment, retention), and h) paediatric cardiology (risk factors, survival, quality of life, and supportive care). Among the studies she has led are three cohort studies of mortality and cancer incidence in nickel workers and one in copper-zinc workers, as well as a case-control study of occupational and other risk factors for prostate cancer in northern Ontario. She enjoys using quantitative, qualitative, and mixed method methodologies. She holds cross appointments with the Schools of Social Work and of Nursing at Laurentian University, and the Northern Ontario School of Medicine, and is a member of the Centre for Research in Occupational Safety and Health at Laurentian University. She also has previous work experience at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine, in the Regional Cancer Program in Sudbury, and in Division of Cardiology at The Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto.

Key Appointments

  • Associate Professor, School of Rural and Northern Health, Laurentian University


  • B.Sc. (Microbiology), University of Toronto (1977)
  • M.Sc. (Microbiology and Immunology), University of Toronto (1983)
  • Ph.D. (Epidemiology), University of Toronto (1989)