Remembering Dr. Annabella Zawada

Bella was born January 18, 1978 in Krakow, Poland and moved to Thunder Bay, Ontario at age 6. Bella excelled in her academics from a very young age. In 1999, Bella graduated from Lakehead University with an Honours Bachelor of Science in Biology. She then went on to become a Doctor of Medicine, graduating from the University of Toronto in 2003. Bella’s medical residency took place in Northwestern Ontario where she practiced throughout the region before settling in Terrace Bay in 2004.

She began her phenomenal career by joining the Aguasabon Medical Clinic, eventually becoming the Lead Physician. She also served as the Emergency Physician and Chief of Staff at the McCausland Hospital, an associate professor at the Northern Ontario School of Medicine, and the Regional Coroner. In 2014, Bella was recognized for her contributions by the SHIFT Young Professionals Network. She was one of the Top Twenty Under Forty recipients of the Northwestern Ontario Visionary Award. This award recognizes young professionals who are leaders in their community.

Bella moved back to Thunder Bay and opened Umbrella Medical Clinic in 2018. Her mission was to provide sexual health services for all ages, all genders, and all orientations. Bella was an activist and an ally for many. She lived by the philosophies “love is love” and “equality for everyone”. Sexual health was not just a career for Bella, it was a passion. Bella was an extraordinary physician who had a tremendous impact on our community. She was admired for her encyclopaedic knowledge, determination and her can-do attitude.

Bella tragically passed away on October 21st, 2021. She will forever be remembered for her contributions to our community and her willingness to go above and beyond the call of duty. Umbrella Medical Clinic will continue to operate in honour of her legacy. We will strive to maintain the core values that her dream was built on.