|OTTAWA, September 22, 2021 – French for the Future’s Board of Directors met at ALT Hotel in Ottawa Monday, September 20, 2021 for the Annual General Meeting of the organization, during which the Board had the opportunity to elect its new president and welcome its new members.
This was French for the Future’s first in-person event since the pandemic began. All public health measures were followed to allow directors and employees to meet safely. Director Michel P. Samson and Past President Michael Salvatori, along with representatives of Heritage Canada, French for the Future’s most important patron, and Welch LLP, its financial auditor, all joined in via video conference.
Danielle Arcand, President of the Board, led the Meeting by starting with round-table introductions and by offering her presidential remarks, after which she received Executive Director Emeline Leurent’s report, as well as Treasurer Charles Ashikwe’s presentation, which included the Welch LLP financial audit report.
Talented figures added to the Board of Directors
At the Meeting, three new members were elected to Board:
– Nicolette Belliveau, former French for the Future ambassador and bilingual lawyer at McInnes Cooper in New Brunswick;
– Sandrine Berezowski, director of French immersion, international languages and culture at West Island College in Alberta;
– Martin Katz, founder and president of Prospero Pictures and prolific producer of well-known feature films such as Hotel Rwanda.
French for the Future is happy that such talented and experienced people are geting involved along their side in promoting French-language learning in Canada. The knowledge and skills of these new members will be of great value to the organization in the years to come.
Departures and arrivals
Danielle Arcand ended her two-year term as president and accepted the role of past president until 2023. Meanwhile, the Directors also wished to salute Michael Salvatori, the former past president, attending via video conference, and to thank him for his work. While Mr. Salvatori had to leave Board, he was applauded by his peers for his exemplary commitment to the organization for several years; he had served as vice president from 2015 to 2017, as president from 2017 to 2019 and as finally past president.
To replace Danielle Arcand, Ania Kolodziej was unanimously elected the new president of Board. Ms. Kolodziej is a bilingual lawyer and strategic advisor who works at Power Law in British Columbia. For their vice president, the Directors acclaimed Denis Fontaine, Deputy Dean for student affairs at Campus Saint-Jean in Alberta.
“In the past year, French for the future has overcome the challenges of the pandemic, continuing to deliver dynamic programming that motivates young people to actively live their bilingualism,” says Ms. Kolodzeij. “French for the future and its partners have shown creativity in bringing together thousands of young people with diverse cultural affiliations from across Canada to offer them significant French-language experiences. Captivating new projects are underway for the next year and I look forward to supporting the team as President.”
French for the Future’s new Board of Directors is highly motivated by reports presented at the Annual General Meeting and is confident that the FFTF team at-large has everything it takes to continue delivering its programs and services to young francophones and francophiles across Canada, while working on innovative projects.
Founded in 1997, French for the Future is a non-profit organization that encourages high school students to study and live in French. It promotes bilingualism in Canada, as well as the immediate and lifelong benefits of learning and communicating in French to students from grades 7 to 12.