Marie-Claude Bibeau

Your member of parliament for


Compton-Stanstead

Marie-Claude Bibeau

Your member of parliament for


Compton-Stanstead

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From Eastern Townships to Ottawa

MAGGIE ST-PIERRE

Your academic background?
My academic background began at the Sacré-Coeur primary school, a school with  an artistic vocation where I learned to play the violin and the piano. In high school, I joined the ranks of the large family that is the Collège Mont Notre-Dame, which was for me, like many others, more than a school. It was there that I had my first contact with the international world and that my passion for politics developed. The opportunities of cultural trips offered at Mont Notre-Dame led me to discover Spain and Italy. In secondary five, I also participated in a UN simulation organized jointly by the Carrefour de Solidarité Internationale and the University of Sherbrooke, which confirmed my passion for international politics.

I then continued my academic career at the CÉGEP de Sherbrooke where I studied humanities with a focus on international relations. I am now studying at the University of Ottawa in Conflict Studies and Human Rights with a minor in History. The co-op program offered at my university has given me a lot of work experience in various federal departments such as the Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, the Department of Global Affairs Canada, the Privy Council Office and the Department of Indigenous and Northern Affairs, where I currently work. Moreover, the University of Ottawa student exchange program gave me the opportunity to study in Denmark and in France and to attend some of the activities organized by the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

Why Ottawa?
National and international politics have always interested me, therefore  Ottawa seemed to me as the perfect city to pursue my studies. On  one hand, the University of Ottawa offers a unique curriculum; on the other , Ottawa is the at thecentre of Canada’s political decisions and is therefore the ideal place to follow current events, and to work in Canada’s prime decision-making centre.

What do you miss in the area?
Obviously, I miss my family and friends a lot, so I go home as often as I can. Despite the beauty of the Rideau Canal and the parks in Ottawa, nothing can match the beauty of the Eastern Townships’ landscapes with its mountains, lakes, rich vegetation, sunset, and autumn colours. The charm of the region lies in the beauty of its landscapes, but also in the sense of familiarity, community and solidarity that emerges from the population.

Your local pride?
My greatest pride has a very personal flavour as it is the family business that my grandfather created in 1968, Excavation Rene St-Pierre. This company, which specializes in demolition, has proven its worth and ranks among the best in Quebec. In addition, Groupe St-Pierre is currently participating in the largest demolition project in Quebec, the dismantling of the Turcot interchange. This company illustrates perfectly the entrepreneurial spirit that emerges from the Eastern Townships’ population in a multitude of fields.

I am also very proud of the particular attention that citizens and decision makers in the region are paying to the environment. Thanks to the plan to fight light pollution, set up by the City of Sherbrooke and the ASTROLab of the Mont-Mégantic National Park, I can admire a starry sky when I go back home.


SEAN O’NEIL

Your academic background?
Born and raised in Sherbrooke/Lennoxville, I had the quintessentially Eastern Townships experience of having gone to Lennoxville Elementary School, Alexander Galt Regional High School, Champlain College and Bishop’s University in the same small town. At each level, I had friends, teachers, and parents who encouraged me to engage with my community and pursue my interests.

While at Bishop’s, I studied Political Science and International Relations. I was actively involved in the campus Young Liberals and Model United Nations and was able to gain valuable international experience by working in Arusha, Tanzania through an internship funded by International Development Canada. I also worked with the Bishop’s Sports Information Department, where I did play-by-play for the Gaiters football and basketball teams, and co-hosted a sports-talk show on CJMQ Community Radio. The Eastern Townships has a fantastic amateur sports scene, which also allowed me to do volunteer work with the World Youth Track and Field Games and the Canada Football Cup in Sherbrooke.

Upon graduation, I went to Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, where I did an MA in Political Studies, with an emphasis on international relations and global governance.

Why Ottawa?
Having always been interested in politics, Ottawa always seemed like a natural fit. I currently work for MP Ali Ehsassi for Willowdale, Ontario, and have been in my current position since January of 2015.

What do you miss most about your region?
I truly believe that the Eastern Townships is one of the most unique regions in the country.  Beyond missing family and friends, there is a sense of community, as well as a breathtaking natural beauty, that is not found in many other parts of Canada.

I miss bike rides from Lennoxville to North Hatley and walks down Main Street of Magog. I miss Saturday afternoons at Coulter Field and Wednesday nights on the patio of Golden Lion Pub. I miss the colours of Mount Orford in the fall and tapping maple trees with my grandpa in the spring.

Your local pride?
The Eastern Townships are filled with hidden gems: fantastic, community-oriented organizations and businesses that contribute to the vibrancy of everyday life.

I believe that the region has an emerging entrepreneurial spirit which has helped foster a sense of innovation and community. The local craft beer scene, for example, is burgeoning. Every time I’m back home, I make sure to grab a pint at Siboire in Sherbrooke or from the Bishop’s Arches Brewery.


ALISON PORTER

Your academic background?
I am proud to be born and raised in Coaticook, a place that I will forever call home.  I went to Ayer’s Cliff Elementary School, Alexander Galt High School, and Champlain Cegep, and I was always very active in extracurricular activities that were available for students, particularly sports and music. As Coaticook is largely an agricultural region, I wanted to pursue my studies in a subject that was very relevant to my interests and my surroundings. I therefore studied at McGill University in the Agricultural Economics program, with a focus on Agri-Business.  I was also a member of the McGill lumberjack team! In order to gain international experience, I studied abroad in the International Business program  at Mannheim University in Germany.

Why Ottawa?
It was actually my education and interest in agriculture that led me to Ottawa. After working for Valacta for a year, I moved to Ottawa to work for the Canadian Dairy Commission for 5 years as an economist and policy analyst. This was a great opportunity to work in an area that is relevant for the many dairy farmers in our region.

I am very honored to now be working as the acting Director of Policy for the Honorable Lawrence MacAulay, Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food.  It is so interesting to learn about the diversity of agriculture across Canada, and to be involved in great initiatives that provide real opportunity for the sector.

What are you missing from Compton-Stanstead?
Although I enjoy living and working in Ottawa, I certainly miss my family and friends, and I try to visit as often as I can.  I miss golfing on courses that showcase the exceptionally vibrant colours of autumn, I miss the clarity of the skies at night while playing music around a bonfire. I miss how spring time only truely comes when I can indulge in fresh maple syrup at the sugar shacks. I miss how the summer is meaured by the height of the corn in the fields, and I especially miss playing hockey on the outdoor rinks.

Your local pride?
I have traveled to many countries around the world, but there is no place like home. Whenever anyone asks about where I am from, I am happy to give them a list of reasons why they need to visit the Eastern Townships. I am proud of our lakes and hills, our farms and local businesses, our bilingualism, and sense of community. I never miss an opportunity to tell people about the Coaticook Gorge or the Magog bike/ice-skating path, or the North Hatley Piggery. And until you have stood in line waiting in great anticipation for a poutine at Woods Snack Bar or for an ice cream cone at the Coaticook dairy, you have not lived!


KAILY MCLEAN

Your academic background?
Originating from New Brunswick, my parents had the wonderful foresight of enrolling me at L’École Primaire du Sacré-Coeur where I was able to learn French before going on to attend high school, CEGEP and university in English at Alexander Galt Regional High School, Champlain College and Carleton University. This highlights the unique linguistic synthesis found within the Estrie region that I have come to truly appreciate as a gift. I’m studying in Public Affairs and Policy Management with a specialization in Social Policy in Canada’s capital city. Family members working on Parliament Hill and with non-profit-organizations helped to open my eyes to opportunities to become involved in the political, humanitarian and social justice spheres, the areas of work I am passionate about.

Why Ottawa?
I applied to be a Page at the House of Commons through which I have had the opportunity over the past year to learn so much about the functioning of Canadian democracy and the work of Members of Parliament. It has been a blessing to get a front row seat to observe and help these hard working men and women. For anyone interested in politics or interrelated fields I highly recommend applying to be a House of Commons or Senate Page; there is not a day on the job you don’t learn something new or in which your views aren’t challenged and refined.

What are you missing from Compton-Stanstead?
After living in Ottawa for almost a year, it reminds me more and more of home. Living in Residence at Carleton University I was surrounded by the river on one side and the Rideau Canal on the other, which bring to mind all the wonderful walks and bike rides I have enjoyed on the paths along the St-Francis River. In the Townships I enjoy the advantages of the city and the beauty of nature such as Mont Pinnacle in the fall when the leaves on the trees are an explosion of colors followed by a stop at the Laiterie De Coaticook. Evenings spent enjoying a picnic by Lake Massiwippi in the quaint village of North Hatley are also always a treat.

Your local pride?
I love to share with visitors the widespread availability of locally grown produce. Furthermore, the region has many creative people with an entrepreneurial spirit to take advantage of our natural landscapes, such as in the innovative Foresta Lumina attraction at the Parc de la Gorge de Coaticook. I had the pleasure of experiencing. I also recognize our artistic and musical talent, which results in numerous opportunities to see wonderful concerts such as those produced by l’Orchestre du Septième Art, an orchestra in which I briefly participated. All of these things and more make me proud to come home!


MAXIMILIEN ROY

Your academic background?
From my elementary school École Jardin-des-Frontières in Stanstead, I studied at Bromptonville High School before starting CEGEP at Champlain College. I then studied political science and public administration at Bishop’s University, while being the President of the Political Science Student Association as well as being involved with the Townshipper’s Association and hosting a show on the community radio CJMQ 88.9FM. I decided to pursue my studies at the Master’s level at the École Nationale d’Administration Publique, which I completed in 2010. Recently, I started an MBA for executive management at UQAM, which I should finish in 2019.

Over the years, I have been involved in politics but also in a number of causes and organizations that are important to me, including the Townshipper’s Association and the Regroupement des Jeunes Chambres du Commerce of Quebec, where I sat on executive board . I am very proud to have received the Purple Letter Award from Bishop’s University, which recognizes the community involvement of students at Bishop’s University.

Why Ottawa?
I always loved politics. I have had the privilege of working in politics since 2009 as assistant to the member for Honoré-Mercier, the Hon. Pablo Rodriguez. My first experience in politics confirmed that it was a passion for me and that one could contribute to society in a concrete way through politics. I then continued my professional career in the Prime Minister and MP for Papineau, the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau’s constituency office. I knew then that I wanted to be part of his government and I am grateful for the opportunity I have today. I am currently working as a policy advisor to the Minister of Finance, the Honourable Bill Morneau.

What are you missing from Compton-Stanstead?
People above all. There is a real sense of living in a community where everyone knows each other and where mutual help is part of everyday life. Then, there are the beautiful landscapes, I particularly like to sit on Lake Memphémagog’ shore. Finally, I would say that I also miss ending an exhausting day of work on my cousin’s farm, the Bouffard & Son farm, as well as dining at the Wood’s Snack Bar in Ayer’s Cliff or the Lion Pub in Lennoxville. Classics!

Your local pride?
I believe that my greatest pride is the entrepreneurial spirit of our region. We have companies that offer excellent products, such as the Les Vraies Richesses bakery in Stanstead, which was recognized as the best baker in 2016. This is just one example of the entrepreneurship, the strength and the tenacity of our region’s citizen.