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A collective of dedicated members

Our office staff

Ajà Besler

Executive Director

Ajà Besler has been the Executive Director of the Dialogue Foundation since 2021, following a career path in the Canadian Francophonie in the areas of youth, performing arts and language rights advocacy. A queer and disabled artist and activist, Ajà has a passion for social justice and the Francophonie. Originally from Edmonton, Ottawa is now home.

Catherine Carle

Manager – National Projects

Working at the Dialogue Foundation since 2013, Catherine is a graduate in Public Relations from La Cité College in Ottawa. Passionate about the performing arts and francophone culture, she brings her knowledge of the performing arts and the world of communications to the Dialogue Foundation and its projects.

Madjeda Bisker

Youth Forum on Intersectional Leadership Coordinator

Madjeda is a marketing and communications professional, passionate about the French-speaking world and committed to equity and inclusion in Canada. With proven expertise in event management, she has successfully coordinated numerous events, demonstrating her ability to create memorable experiences. Her collaborations with various Canadian francophone organizations enrich her understanding of francophone issues. She applies her skills to ensure the success of each project, while embodying the values she holds dear.

Patrick Pharand

Microgrants Manager

For many years, Patrick has been working in Canada’s Francophonie in a variety of sectors. Whether it’s event management, grants, logistics or artistic tours, he has accumulated a great deal of on-the-ground experience of the realities of Francophones in different regions. He hopes to create a greater public space for francophones, in an inclusive and equitable way.

Ally Segreto

Ally is a 2nd year Honours Communications in French Immersion student who joined the team through the Co-Op program at the University of Ottawa. Her studies encourage her to promote and achieve effective communication in both official languages. When not at school or in the office, Ally enjoys being in nature and playing music.

Fanny He

Fanny He

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Project Officer

Passionate about researching critical race theory and decolonization approaches, Fanny is a multilingual who has worked in community and public service for over 6 years. In her spare time, she enjoys playing video games and composing music as therapeutic techniques for mental health wellness. Since joining the Foundation in April 2022, Fanny has contributed greatly to the achievement of the Dialogue Foundation’s mission by adding several IDT resources.

Our Board of Directors


Chedly Belkhodja

Chair, Quebec, New Brunswick

Chedly Belkhodja is professor and was director of the Concordia University School of Public and Community Affairs. From 1992 to 2014, he was a professor in the Department of Political Science at the Université de Moncton.

As a Franco-Tunisian, he grew up in New Brunswick. 


He holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from the University of Bordeaux-Montesquieu (1996) and a master’s degree in Political Science from the Université de Montreal (1991). His research focuses on immigration issues in mid-sized cities and low-immigration areas and on discourses and representations of cultural, religious and ethnic diversity. He also studies the phenomenon of populism and right-wing ideologies. 

He was involved in the creation of the Atlantic Metropolis Centre as Director of Research where he later became Director of the Centre from 2006 to 2012. In the meantime, he directed two films produced by the National Film Board of Canada, such as Tableaux d’un voyage imaginaire in 2001 with filmmaker Jean Chabot and Au bout du fil in 2006. 


Claire Thibideau

Vice-Chair, Ontario

Ms. Thibideau has worked in education since 1978 where she started as a teacher. Until 2010, she was also a Learning Advisor, elementary school principal, and director of the identity-building department at the Conseil Scolaire Catholique Mon Avenir.  

During her career and since her retirement, she has been involved with both Ontario’s Francophone and national organizations in the capacity of: 

  • South Central Region representative for the Association des enseignantes et des enseignants de l’Ontario (AEFO) 
  • Member of the board of directors and president of the Association des directions et directions adjointes des écoles franco-ontariennes (ADFO) 
  • President and volunteer executive director for the Fédération canadienne des directions d’écoles francophones (FCDEF) 
  • Member of the educational tools committee and of the training programming and guidance committee for internship. She is also an Ontario representative to the board of directors and member of the board of governors of the Association canadienne d’éducation de langue française (ACELF). 

As an educator, Claire Thibideau has written various educational tools, oversaw and developed an ADFO leadership tool named Le leadership culturel partagé. As a member of the FCDEF, she has produced, in partnership with the ACELF, the FCCF and various federal departments, Le passeur culturel. 

In addition to the field of education, Ms. Thibideau is president of the Colibri Centre in Barrie by helping Francophone women who have been victims of violence. She is also a member of the board of directors of La Meute de Lafontaine, an organization that organizes a Francophone cultural festival and cultural activities for schools in the Simcoe region of Ontario. 

Suzanne Jacob

Treasurer, British Columbia

Chair of la Société de développement économique (SDE) de la Colombie-Britannique

Very involved in the Francophone community of British-Columbia, she has been president of Réseau Femmes and the Société de Développement Économique la Colombie-Britannique. Since 2018, she sits on the Board of Directors of the Fédération des Francophones de la Colombie-Britannique as the Greater Vancouver representative. She is now Head Mentor of the Business Mentoring Program of the Société Économique de Développement de la CB.  

She had a career in management and is now working as a financial advisor. 


Françoise Sigur-Cloutier

Secretary, Consultant, Alberta

Françoise Sigur-Cloutier was born in Toulouse, France. She immigrated to Canada and settled in Calgary in 1969. She devoted a large part of her career to community development. For 18 years, she served as Regional Communications Manager in Saskatchewan for Radio-Canada.  

As a volunteer-activist, she works in several provincial and national Francophone organizations, particularly in publishing and feminist groups. Elected as president of the Assemblée Communautaire Fransaskoise (ACF), Françoise Sigur-Cloutier carries her mandate on political representation, immigration and the development of post-secondary issues. 


Relocated to Calgary since May 2019, she is once again very involved in the Francophone community at the local, provincial and national levels. 


Françoise is married, mother of three children, grandmother of four grandsons and great-grandmother of little Arthur. 

Liane Roy

President of the FCFA, New Brunswick

Originally from New Brunswick, Liane Roy has devoted her work to the Francophonie at the provincial, regional, national, and international levels. She has served as Assistant Deputy Minister in the Department of Post-Secondary Education, Training and Labour and the Department of Intergovernmental Affairs of New Brunswick. 


As the first CEO of the New Brunswick Community College (NBCC), she led this post-secondary institution to become self-sufficient by overseeing the entire transition process towards a new structure. She worked as a youth technical advisor for the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie (OIF) in Paris during the preparation for the Francophone Summit in Moncton (1999) and as technical advisor for the Partnership for Non-Formal Education in Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso). 


She has also led the promotion of Acadia throughout various organizations, such as La Société Nationale de l’Acadie (SNA) and La Société de l’Acadie du Nouveau-Brunswick. In 2019, she completed a second Master of Education and a Doctorate (EdD) in Educational Leadership – managing Cultural and Linguistic Diversity at Simon Fraser University. She also holds a Master’s degree in Education with a major in Counselling from the University of Moncton and a Bachelors’s degree in Social Work from the same institution. 


Liane Roy is currently a member of the Board of Governors of Université Sainte-Anne and the Board of Directors of the Marichette Foundation. She has also served as Chair of the Board of Directors of Colleges and Institutes Canada, the Consortium national de développement de ressources pédagogiques en français au collégial and Atlantic College Atlantique. 


President of the FCFA since 2021, Liane Roy carries the voice of a strong, open, and diversified Francophonie at the international level that engages with reconciliation of Indigenous Peoples. The federal government’s adoption of a modern and respected Official Languages Act is also one of her priorities. 

Jenny Matingu

Director, Ontario

Jenny Matingu graduated from Clendon College of York University in International studies with a major in South Asian Studies. During her university studies, Jenny developed an interest in issues related to multicultural aspects in Canadian society and in plurality within the Francophonie. Jenny is currently a Liaison Officer at the Ontario Legislative Assembly where she works in Parliamentary Protocol. In this role, she provides non-partisan assistance to MPs and arranges special events including the Participation of the Speaker of the House and diplomats. Jenny remains involved in projects related to the Francophonie by supporting her colleagues in matters related to the Secretariat of the Ontario Section at the Assemblée parlementaire de la Francophonie (APF). 

Allister Surette

Director, Nova Scotia

Mr. Surette has been President and Vice-Chancellor of Université Sainte-Anne since July 1st, 2011.  

Mr. Surette was elected to the Nova Scotia Legislature from the constituency of Argyle in 1993. He held several political positions until 1998, including Special Advisor on Acadian and Francophone Governance within the provincial public school system, Minister of Human Resources and Minister of Acadian Affairs. 


In addition, he remains actively involved in various committees. He is currently Chair of the Canadian Foundation for Cross-Cultural Dialogue, the Nova Scotia Economic Development Council and the organizing committee of the next Acadian World Congress that will be held in the southwestern Nova Scotia in 2024.  


In October 2004, Mr. Surette received the Père-Léger-Comeau certificate from the Fédération Acadienne de la Nouvelle-Écosse. In October 2008, he was enthroned Commander of the Ordre de la Pléade. In October 2019, he received the Ordre des Francophones d’Amérique for his outstanding contribution to the development of the French language in America and in January 2019, the French Republic named him Knight of l’Ordre des Palmes académiques. 


Paula Popescu

Director, Quebec

Paula Popescu is a social worker currently pursing a Master of Social Work degree at the University of Ottawa. Her thesis focuses on access to long-term care for Francophone seniors in the Ottawa area. Paula is also doing an internship at the Office of the Commissioner of Official Languages and will be working in the department. 

Yvon Godin

Director, New Brunswick

As a former miner at the Brunswick mine, Yvon Godin devoted 18 years of his career to politics as Member of Parliament for Acadie-Bathurst in New Brunswick from 1997 to 2015.

Over the years, he has served as the whip and spokesperson for the New Democratic Party on natural resources, employment insurance, labour and Official Languages. 

He is the author of Bill C-232, the first bill introduced in the Parliament of Canada to ensure that judges appointed to the Supreme Court of Canada have language skills in both official languages. He received the rank of Knight of the Order of La Pleiade for his contribution to Canadian Francophonie. 

Before being sworn in as a Member of Parliament, Yvon was president of the Syndicat des Métallos Local 5385 from 1982 to 1988, and union representative from 1988 to 1997. He negotiated more than 30 collective agreements during his career and was president of the Local Service District (LSD) of Allardville, New Brunswick. 

Always active on the political scene, Yvon is a guest panelist on the television show Le club des ex on RDI, as well as a radio station guest on L’heure juste at Ici Radio-Canada Première. 

Yvon is from St-Sauveur, New Brunswick and is the father of three children and grandfather of four grandchildren. 

Paulette Duguay

Director, Manitoba

Born in 1955 in Saint Boniface, Manitoba, Paulette is the third of five children of a Métis mother from the Red River and a father of French-Canadian ancestry. She enjoyed a happy childhood, but in an atmosphere of pride and perseverance for the preservation of the French language and the traditions of her Franco-Métis heritage.


Honored to have had a maternal grandfather loyal to Riel and renowned for her storytelling talents in Métis history, Paulette naturally took an interest in her heritage and the history of Manitoba, made famous by her great-grandmother’s brother, Louis Riel.

Continuing a family tradition, Paulette has been involved since 2008 with the country’s oldest Métis organization founded in 1887, the Union Nationale Métisse Saint-Joseph du Manitoba where she is on her third year as president. Paulette has also been an employee of the Great West Life Insurance Company for nearly 25 years, working in claims.

When time allows, she returns to the passion of her youth by being play actress. Her last role portrayed the mother of the author Gabrielle Roy, a monologue that was presented in the original house itself which became a museum. It is also in Saint-Boniface at Cercle Molière, the oldest theatre in Canada in operation since 1925 that Paulette met her husband, Denis Duguay.

After 44 years of marriage, 5 children, 10 grandchildren and the whole family in good health, she only has gratitude and optimism for the goodness of life.

Daphné Kathia Rosalbert

Director, Quebec

As a lawyer based in Montreal, Daphné is a Senior Legal Advisor for Legal Affairs & Regulatory Compliance in the banking sector.

She is also involved in her community, as a director of Projet Harmonie, a non-profit organization operating in the Mercier-Ouest sector of Montreal.

As a jurist committed to the community, Daphné wishes to encourage the social involvement of jurists and cultural communities in all areas of Canadian society.


Ania Kolodziej

Director, British Columbia

Ania is a lawyer in Vancouver. She practices law in English, French and Polish, through which she focuses on civil litigation, constitutional law and language rights. Ania has worked on one of the largest and most protracted education and language rights court challenges in Canadian history. She also provides strategic advice to numerous public institutions, which include French-language school boards across Canada. 


Having learned French through immersion, Ania completed her first degree in Political Science and French literature at Simon Fraser University in the French Cohort Program, a multidisciplinary program offered primarily in French by the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences. It was at the University of Ottawa that Ania obtained her Common Law and Civil Law degrees in 2011. In 2018, she completed her master’s degree in Education and Sustainable Development at the University of British Columbia. 

Pierre Jury

Director, Ontario

Pierre Jury’s career at Le Droit spans nearly 35 years, the last 18 of which he spent as chief editorialist defending the French-speaking world and the principles of social justice, democracy and sound administration as chief editorialist.

Having covered all areas of journalism, from economics and politics to sports, and having kept a column on gastronomy and restaurants for over 25 years, he distinguished himself as the first French-speaking journalist to cover the creation of a National Hockey League team, the Ottawa Senators.

Furthermore, Mr. Jury has also been a judge in numerous culinary competitions and panels, and was one of 30 Canadians to receive the prestigious Order of Agricultural Merit, awarded by the French Republic.

Mr. Jury has also judged numerous culinary competitions and panels, and was one of 30 Canadians to receive the prestigious Order of Agricultural Merit, awarded by the French Republic.

Son of a Ukrainian father and a French-Canadian mother, Pierre Jury is an alumnus of the International Olympic Academy and holds a BA in German and Russian history from McGill University in Montreal.

He also studied at the University of Montreal and Laval, and was a scholarship student at the Rotman School of Business in Toronto.

Françoise Enguehard

Director, Newfoundland and Labrador

Originally from Saint-Pierre et Miquelon, Françoise has lived in St. John’s, Newfoundland, for nearly fifty years. She is a journalist (formerly with Radio-Canada, now a columnist for l’Acadie Nouvelle), and a volunteer in the Atlantic francophone community (President of the Société Nationale de l’Acadie from 2006 to 2012 and of the Fondation Nationale de l’Acadie from 2014 to 2018).


Specialized in communications, she has led the organization of major events, including the celebrations surrounding the four-hundredth anniversary of Acadia and 500 years of presence in Newfoundland, in 2004, and in 2016, the Bicentennial celebrations of the return of the islands of Saint-Pierre and Miquelon to France.

As an well-known author, Françoise has published five novels, including two for young readers.