Diane Sauvé has participated in the activities of the Jeanne Sauvé Foundation since the outset and has played a key role in the evolution of the Foundation’s programming, including the application of the results of the Foundation’s 2013 Strategic Plan. She is active in many aspects of the operations of Jeanne Sauvé House and the program participants’ activities.
Born in Switzerland of French parents, who were students in Geneva at the time of her birth, she spent the next 15 years of her life in Africa (Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Zaire (Democratic Republic of the Congo), Cameroon, Sénégal and Egypt), where her father was involved in international banking. She returned to France to pursue studies in Pharmacology, and after her marriage moved to Canada where she initially worked organizing conventions, international meetings and special events.
Her profound commitment to the local community has included leading roles in fund-raising activities for the Canadian Cancer Society (the Daffodil Ball), the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation; I Musici Chamber Orchestra; co-president of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts Ball; the McCord Museum of Canadian History, Hôpital Ste-Justine (decoration of the walls with children’s paintings); and the Centre de répit Philou, a respite center for children with severe handicaps.
Before joining the Foundation, Nathalie managed a successful company and she more recently worked as an advisor in economic development for small and medium enterprises (SME) and start-up businesses, with a particular focus on youth. Nathalie is passionate about innovation, entrepreneurship and social funding.
Nathalie holds a MBA from Université de Sherbrooke, a Bachelor’s degree (B.A.) in Communications from the Université du Québec à Montréal, a Bachelor’s degree (B.A.) in Microbiology-Immunology from McGill University and a certificate in translation from Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières.
Colin is passionate about engaging and empowering youth with global perspectives to solve pressing economic, social and political challenges. He is a lawyer with an international background in law, economics, public policy, human rights and international development. He studied at the National University of Singapore (economics), McGill University (law) and the National Taiwan Normal University (mandarin). Prior to joining the Foundation, Colin worked with the United Nations in international law in The Hague. He considers himself a citizen of the world, speaking four languages (French, English, Spanish, Mandarin), and having worked and studied across many countries including Peru, China, the Netherlands, Singapore, Taiwan and Sri Lanka. He has been inspired to support and engage youth leadership ever since he served as President of his college student government. Here in Canada, he has been actively involved in supporting community initiatives on his free time, working with organizations like World University Services of Canada to sponsor refugees and Kids Help Phone to help underprivileged and vulnerable youth. He also works with Enactus – a global community of entrepreneurial leaders who see business as a way to address social issues. Colin thrives in multicultural environments and enjoys traveling the world to embrace and celebrate cultural diversity. He loves making new friendships and connecting with people across sectors and countries to work to make our communities and our world a better and more just and inclusive place for us all to live in.
Eliana wants to live in a world filled with creative problem-solving ideas, compassionate hearts, projects and a force field around her that attracts interesting and innovative people.
Born in Colombia, from a Canadian father and a Colombian mother and raised in seven different countries, she quickly learned to navigate the complex dynamics and the beauty that comes with diversity and as a result rapidly adapted to any new situation and challenge. She enjoys wearing several hats simultaneously, thrives in creative environments where no two-work days are the same, and flourishes when learning from the knowledge and experiences of others.
Her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from McGill and her love for people allowed her to travel to her birth country to work with the YMCA in one of the most complex and interestingly challenging neighborhoods of Medellin, Colombia. There, she worked hand in hand with youth offering them a safe haven where they were encouraged to create projects, take English and theatre classes, and, above all, explore their creativity and their talents. Then, she completed an Education and Pedagogy Certificate and moved on to become an English and Art teacher in two different schools in Medellin. Being in her mother’s hometown made her want to get more involved in community development and help in any way she could. This aspiration led her to travel in 15 Colombian cities as a logistics and event coordinator, organizing electoral debates between mayoral candidates and facilitating clean election workshops.
After four inspiring years full of exciting experiences, Eliana decided it was time to come back to Montreal in order to share ideas, develop projects and never stop learning from this wonderful city.
Claire has the strong conviction that education is a crucial tool to enact positive change in society. Following her belief, Claire worked for over 10 years as the manager of a non-profit organization that offered subsidized housing and other resources to support struggling single mothers wishing to return to school. In this capacity, she managed a food bank, child care services, homework aid services and other initiatives which helped create a sense of community and mutual support among these young women in search of a better life for themselves and their children.
Claire holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with a specialization in accounting from HEC-Montréal. For years, she worked in a large chartered accounting firm where she became familiar with numerous business structures. Over the years, she has also worked for a number of organizations and causes linked to education such as Villa Ste-Marcelline, Collège Trinité, Collège de Montréal and the Ballets Jazz de Montréal.
Dr. Anita Nowak is an award-winning educator and empathy expert. She believes empathy is the most positively disruptive force on the planet – but only when it leads to Empathic Action – an idea that informs all her teaching, writing, coaching, consulting and public speaking.
Serving the Foundation as Program & Instructional Design Advisor, she is responsible for designing the curriculum, learning process and timeline for the Sauvé Social Impact Initiative (SSII) component of the Foundation’s Public Leadership Program.
In 2014-5, Anita was Director of Operations for McGill’s Social Learning for Social Impact MOOC (Massive Open Online Course). Prior to that, she served the Desautels Faculty of Management as founding Integrating Director of the Social Economy Initiative (SEI) and was responsible for integrating social entrepreneurship and social innovation into the faculty’s teaching, research and outreach. She also advised The J.W. McConnell Family Foundation on RECODE, an initiative to help scale social innovation at colleges and universities across Canada.
Anita teaches Introduction to Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation at McGill and was awarded Professor of the Year by the Desautels Management Undergraduate Society in 2014.
She is author of The Empaths Strike Back: Stories of Everyday Heroes Using Empathy to Change the World (in progress) and host of Empathic Action, a YouTube channel devoted to celebrating everyday heroes doing good in the world.
Gioel is in continual pursuit of connection with others. She spends a lot of time thinking about deepening relationships across cultures and sectors. In 2010 she co-founded Recrear, a Canadian charity working to integrate young people more genuinely in community development through participatory action research. Recrear’s projects have taken Gioel to learn from young people and practitioners from Ecuador to Bangladesh, to Malawi and beyond.
In 2012-2013, Gioel had the opportunity to become a Sauvé Fellow. She remained so inebriated with the vibe at Sauvé House that she became involved with the Foundation’s strategic review. In 2015, she supported the Foundation with the design and implementation of the Alumni engagement strategy. Currently, she is working with the Foundation to help design a fun, vibrant orientation program for the incoming 2017-19 cohort.
She brings to the Foundation a mix between academic research, and a passion for facilitating collective processes. Gioel holds a BA in International Studies from the University of New Orleans and an MPhil in Development Studies from Cambridge University. She is currently a PhD candidate at the Institute of Development Studies (IDS) in Brighton, UK. Through a case study of Colombian youth organizations, Gioel’s PhD project explores how different funding models affect organizational culture as well as the quality of social organizations’ internal and external relationships.