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Lorraine Simard

Lorraine Simard

Graduate Diploma in the Management of Cultural Organizations (1996)

Lorraine Simard advises organizations on corporate social responsibility and risk management. She identifies gaps and introduces various initiatives to address them, including business process audits. She also implements governance and reporting mechanisms. Her clients include leading multinationals, mining and metals companies, municipalities and service organizations.

Lorraine manages multi-stakeholder workshops for the mining industry in Africa and French-speaking countries around the world. She is regularly asked to share her expertise with standards advisory boards.

What are you doing to help change the world?

I focus on one vision and one commitment at a time. I am convinced that the transition toward a sustainable, carbon-neutral economic development framework requires our current and aspiring leaders to be more familiar with the imperatives of corporate social responsibility.

I founded Comité 21 Québec in 2012 to accelerate the adoption of this vision and promote concrete commitments to make sustainability a reality. Our goal is to bring together the people and resources necessary to implement best practices across the province. Based on this initiative, we also teamed up with Comité 21 France, founded in 1995, to establish an international network. And at COP 21 in Paris, we launched our activities in Burkina Faso.

Comité 21 Québec was also involved in the creation of the CAP C21 challenge, to encourage teams of up-and-coming professionals to carry out a sustainable development project with support from a group of mentors. The teams come from regional county municipalities, cities, towns, institutions, businesses, associations, NGOs and the media. They receive more than 65 hours of coaching in sustainable development and management skills. We are proud to be already working with our first organizations in Quebec.

To what do you attribute the success of your career path?

I bucked the market trends. My path as an advisor with a profoundly human touch took root in my initial career in public relations and was shaped by my desire to break new ground. That took further study in management and the environment. Today, I can see how valuable these complementary skill sets and my expertise are.

I have developed strong ties with experts around the world. What I have accomplished in Quebec and overseas has been made possible through the shared vision of the members of my networks and the development of partnerships. Conviction and passion have been the impetus behind these endeavours.


How did your time at HEC Montréal help you or give you the tools to overcome the challenges you encountered along the way?

HEC Montréal confirmed my interest in management, performance and innovation. A number of my courses transformed the way I perceive management. I am particularly grateful to Professor Laurent Lapierre and Natalie Bertrand, the lecturer in leadership and project management. My graduate diploma from HEC Montréal is still having a tremendous influence on my career. Even though it was a very demanding time in my life, juggling my young family, my education and my professional life, I would do it all over again without hesitation and take advantage of the HEC Montréal alumni network even earlier.

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