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Biographical notes

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Renée Dupuis, C.M., Ad.E.

A lawyer and writer, Renée Dupuis specializes in the fields of administrative law, human rights, and Indigenous law (individuals and communities). She has been a legal advisor and consultant for First Nations and their regional and national organizations in negotiating tripartite comprehensive claims and in constitutional negotiations. She chaired the Indian Specific Claims Commission, a federal commission of inquiry, and the Barreau du Québec's committee on the rights of Aboriginal peoples. In August 2011, she was appointed the vice-president of the Commission on Human Rights and Youth Rights of Quebec. Ms. Dupuis was also a member of the Canadian Human Rights Act Review Panel and served as a commissioner with the Canadian Human Rights Commission. Over the past 30 years, she has participated both as a professional and as a volunteer in training activities for women and women's support organizations. She was a member of the collective that established the Quebec City Women’s Health Centre. Her sustained commitment to women’s community support groups and the advancement of women’s rights was recognized by the Barreau du Québec in 2004 through the Christine-Tourigny Award, and the YWCA Women of Distinction Award in 2002. Her leadership and achievements have been repeatedly recognized by her peers and by society as a whole. In 2012, the Barreau du Québec and Université Laval highlighted her exceptional contribution and her outstanding professional achievements by awarding her respectively the Quebec Bar Medal and an honorary doctorate of law. She also had the honour to be appointed a Member of the Order of Canada in 2005. She has given numerous seminars and conferences in Canada and abroad and authored a number of works and articles. She received the 2001 Governor General's Award for Non-Fiction for her book Justice for Canada's Aboriginal Peoples.

Éric Forest

Éric Forest has worked for the development of Eastern Quebec for over 40 years. As the Mayor of Rimouski since 2005, he has engaged the Rimouski community through a strategic plan that guides the development of a respectful, united community. Under his leadership, Rimouski is now recognized as one of the best cities to live in Canada, with a strong cultural vitality and an economic structure geared to the knowledge economy. He entered politics at age 27, as a councillor in Pointe-au-Père – and was elected mayor two years later. After spending some time in the business community, as the co-owner and vice-president of a car dealership, he returned to politics in 1994, as a councillor with the City of Rimouski, before becoming mayor. From 1995 to 2005, he was vice-president and director general of the Océanic hockey club, where he set the goal of making the Océanic an instrument for social cohesion for all of Eastern Quebec. He became the Mayor of Rimouski in 2005, and he chaired the Union of Quebec Municipalities (UMQ) for almost four years, from 2010 to 2014, in the context of a major crisis of confidence by citizens toward their municipal elected officials. His commitment helped to bring together the municipal sector, through two provincial summits that led to the preparation of a white paper on the future of municipalities. While Chair of the UMQ, he also implemented a social and professional integration project that enabled youth from youth centres to have an enriching work experience within their city’s municipal team. In 2014, he received the Jean-Paul L’Allier Award, which honours a Quebec elected official for outstanding vision, leadership and achievements in urban planning and land use planning. Mr. Forest is also very active in numerous social causes and is particularly committed to encouraging young people and women to become involved in politics, within the scope of his responsibilities with the UMQ and the L’Effet A movement.

Marc Gold

Marc Gold has a recognized record of achievement both professionally and in service to the community. In his early career as a law professor at Osgoode Hall Law School in Toronto, he published extensively, lectured throughout Canada and abroad, and was one of a handful of academics solicited to provide training for federally-appointed judges in the area of constitutional law and the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. He left full-time academic life twenty-five years ago, and has since made significant contributions through service to the community. He has held major leadership roles in the Jewish community at the local, national and international levels, including being Chair of Jewish Federations of Canada. He also served for ten years as the Chair of ENSEMBLE pour le respect de la diversité (formerly the Tolerance Foundation), a not-for-profit organization that works with youth to build a more open and inclusive society, which currently reaches more than 25,000 young people annually in schools throughout Quebec and Canada. Mr. Gold served on the Board of Directors and was Chair of the Tenure and Promotions Committee of the Université de Montréal for sixteen years, and upon the end of his mandate in June 2016, was named administrateur émérite in recognition of his service to the university. For 23 years, he was also Vice-President of Maxwell Cummings and Sons, a family-owned private real estate and investment firm based in Montreal. He currently serves as a part-time member of the Parole Board of Canada and is an Adjunct Professor of Law at McGill University. At present, he is a member of the executive committees of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra and Centraide of Greater Montreal. He received an honorary doctorate from Bar Ilan University in 2012 and the Samuel Bronfman Medal from Federation CJA in 2015.

Marie-Françoise Mégie

Dr. Marie-Françoise Mégie’s professional career comprises over 35 years as a family physician and nearly 30 years as a university professor. She arrived in Quebec in 1976, from Haiti, and rose through the ranks of the medical profession and university teaching, becoming a clinical associate professor in the Department of Family Medicine at the Université de Montréal. Her university involvement enabled her to participate in the seniors’ care committee and to work on the curriculum review committee of the Department of Family Medicine of the Université de Montréal.  Her medical practice includes providing home health care services for seniors, persons with severe disabilities, and end-of-life patients. She is the medical director of the Maison de soins palliatifs de Laval. Since 2001 she has been a guest speaker at various conferences and symposia at the international, national and provincial levels. She is a member of a number of professional associations, has chaired the Association of Haitian Physicians Abroad, and currently chairs the Association Médecins Francophones du Canada. Since 2006 she has been the editor-in chief of the Newsletter of the Association Médecins Francophones du Canada. Dr. Mégie has received a number of awards for her professional, volunteer and personal contributions. 

Raymonde Saint-Germain

Raymonde Saint-Germain has had a distinguished career with the Government of Quebec and is recognized for her integrity and dedication in fulfilling her duties. As a senior public servant, she has served as the Assistant Deputy Minister of International Relations, Deputy Minister of Government Services, Deputy Minister of Citizenship and Immigration, and Éditrice officielle du Québec. Ms. Saint-Germain was unanimously reappointed as Ombudsperson by the Members of Quebec’s National Assembly in June 2011, for a second consecutive five-year term of office. As Ombudsperson, she has commented on over 125 bills and draft regulations, from the perspective of respect for human rights and freedoms (with regard to mental health, residual rights of incarcerated persons, independent investigations of police incidents resulting in serious injury or death of civilians, end of life care, social protection regimes, administrative justice, and governance). She served as vice-chair (2009-2013) and chair (2013-2015) of the Association des ombudsmans et médiateurs de la francophonie. She has contributed to the professional development of her peers as a trainer with professional associations and universities, in mentoring for executive succession planning, and in volunteering. She was awarded the Prix Orange in 2009 by the Association des groupes d'intervention en santé mentale for her initiative to conduct a systemic investigation of violations of the rights of hospitalized psychiatric patients.

Rosa Galvez, Ph.D.,  ing. 

Originally from Peru, Dr. Rosa Galvez has spent more than 32 years in Canada and has become a leading expert in the field of environmental pollution and pollution control. Her expertise carries across many environmental problems affecting human health including water pollution, waste and residues, contaminated lands, and the impact of economic activities such as mining or petroleum transport. Her positions have focused on the perspectives of recycling, restoration of ecological services, re-valorization (of waste or lands) and protection of non-renewable natural resources. As an expert she has offered opinions to international government bodies such as the Commission for Environmental Cooperation (supporting the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation), and Canada-US and Quebec-Vermont agreements for protecting the Great Lakes, and the St-Lawrence River. She has participated in multiple UN forums. She holds a PhD in Environmental Engineering from McGill University. She has been a professor at Laval University since 1994 in the Civil and Water Engineering Department and has been head of this department since 2010. Before that, she was Research Associate at the Geotechnical Research Centre at McGill. Her research career has taken her to many parts of the world, including France, Italy, Belgium, Peru, Chili, Brazil, Mexico, Japan and China, where she established partnerships or participated in engineering projects in addition to building collaborative relationships with universities in these countries. She contributes to the Centre d'études nordiques, whose mission is to support the sustainable development of northern regions by way of an improved understanding and prediction of environmental change. Her research achievements include studying Lac Megantic’s major oil spill, and emergency and remediation actions during unconventional oil spills. She has also conducted studies for the Government of the Northwest Territories on mining and lands sustainability and discussed cumulative impacts of a British Columbia hydroelectric project on the Mackenzie watershed. She has won numerous awards both in Quebec and internationally.

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