Doug is a motivating, tireless yet inspirational Fundraising & NGO Executive. He is a translator of science and organizational missions to engage the public to spark innovation that impacts lives. Experienced at inspiring philanthropists to donate $1 billion+ to organizations helping those in need, fund medical research to change lives, and rejuvenate communities.
With years of expertise in a wide range of leadership positions, Doug has rallied and strategically guided teams of community leaders, volunteers and staff in health care, higher education, public television, corporations and communities to achieve accelerated growth and expanded health promotion and support services. Doug was part of the community activism that led to Canada’s Royal Commission of Inquiry on the Blood System in Canada. He served in the Ontario Premier’s Office while Ontario went alone offering compensation for Hepatitis C. He was on the team that secured the largest private investment in mental health research through a $100 million gift. Doug currently serves as President & CEO for Fighting Blindness Canada. He was the co-Project Lead for the Cost of Vision Loss and Blindness in Canada Report and its COVID-19 addendum released in 2021.
He is an advocate for greater public investment in gene therapies, stem cells and pharmaceuticals to improve health outcomes of people living with blinding eye diseases, and public health programs to prevent blindness through regular eye examinations and vision screening like Diabetes Action Canada’s Project OPEN which supports improved eye care for vulnerable populations.
Areas of Expertise (5)
Inherited Retinal Diseases
COVID-19's impact on vision loss
Guest Lecturer, Fundraising Management Graduate Certificate
2013 to present
Certified Fund-Raising Executive (CFRE)
2006 to present
Wilfrid Laurier University: B.A., Honours Political Science 1992
Wilfrid Laurier University: B.A., Communications Studies 1989
- Association of Fundraising Professionals, Member: 1999 to current
- PC Ontario Fund, Member of the Board of Directors: 1994 to 2015
- Carassauga Festival of Cultures in Mississauga, Member of the Board of Directors: 2005 to 2006
Media Appearances (7)
'What’s the price for sight?': N.S. family can’t access treatment to save daughter’s vision
CTV Television Network
At five years old, Nora Francis definitely has an eye for art. The young girl loves to draw and will spend hours with her paper and markers at the family’s kitchen table. But every day, Nora’s eyes are losing sight. At two years old, she was diagnosed with Leber congenital amaurosis, or LCA, a rare inherited vision disease resulting from mutations in a specific gene. It causes the death of cells in the retina.
More needed to address 'emerging crisis' of vision loss in Canada, report finds
CTV Television Network
A new report suggests that improved services for those with vision loss are needed to address growing costs that could otherwise put a strain on the health-care system and Canada's economy. The report, published on Wednesday from Deloitte Access Economics and commissioned by four leading vision organizations in Canada, used established data on major eye diseases to estimate that vision loss costed Canada nearly $33 billion in 2019 and is expected to climb to $56 billion in 2050, primarily due to trends in population growth and aging.
Ontario faces crisis as millions of eye exams in jeopardy
Canada Newswire online
Doug Earle, President and CEO, Fighting Blindness Canada "With an aging population and increase in chronic sight-threatening disease, the need for optometrists will continue to grow. However, the recent spotlight on the poor economics of publicly funded eye care may pose a threat to access to care and the viability of the profession."
'I never saw stars before': Gene therapy brings back 8-year-old Canadian boy's sight
CTV Television Network
For the thousands of Canadians at risk of blindness, eight-year-old Sam is a beacon of hope. He is the first Canadian to be treated with gene replacement therapy for a rare form of blindness which had left Sam unable to see sky on a cloudy day, and unable to make out shapes in the dark. “Sometimes you have to walk in the night and I couldn’t see things and you bump into things,” Sam told CTV News.
Fighting Blindness Canada hosts ‘Screens off for Sight’ challenge amid COVID-19 pandemic
Global News online
“This is an experience for families to spend 24 hours doing other things than looking at a TV, computer screens and video games,” president and CEO with Fighting Blindness Canada, Doug Earle, said in an interview with 770 CHQR.
Eye disease sufferers face challenging times amid COVID-19 pandemic
Winnipeg Sun online
“As we live through these challenging times, we want to assure Canadians that their health and safety is of the highest importance to us,” said Doug Earle, president of Fighting Blindness Canada.
Banff resident leaves $600,000 legacy to fight blindness
The Crag and Canyon online
“Doreen Powles’ legacy will impact people around the world as research discoveries transform lives by leading to treatments that restore sight. Thank you, Doreen, for your generosity,” said Doug Earle, President and CEO, Fighting Blindness Canada.