The Commission is composed of 13 members: the president, the two vice-presidents and ten part-time members.
The members take part in the Commission’s sessions in which they debate the institution’s positions. They are responsible for adopting the recommendations of the Commission. They also take part in the complaints committee and the investigation committee where final decisions on investigations are made.
The members are appointed by the National Assembly of Quebec.
Mr. Philippe-André Tessier was appointed President by the National Assembly on February 28, 2019. Vice-President in charge of the Charter mandate since December 2017, Mr. Tessier had been acting as Interim President since March 15, 2018. Prior to his appointment, Mr.Tessier was Practice Group Leader of Robinson Sheppard Shapiro’s Labour Law Group, acting both as a lawyer and as a Certified Industrial Relations Counsellor. A graduate of Université de Montréal, he is a member of the Québec Bar and a member of Ordre des conseillers en ressources humaines et relations industrielles agréés du Québec (Quebec order of chartered human resources and industrial relations advisors). He is also a certified director of the Collège des administrateurs de société. Listed as a leading transportation law practitioner by Best Lawyers in Canada from 2012 until his appointment, his practice focused on labour and employment law under both federal and provincial jurisdictions.
Mr. Tessier was very active in his professional order having been president of the Young Bar of Montréal (AJBM), secretary and treasurer of the Council of the Bar of Montreal and member of the Executive Committee and the General Council of the Barreau du Québec. He was also a member and secretary of Éducaloi's board of directors and chairman of the board of the Société québécoise d’information juridique (SOQUIJ) until his appointment at the Commission in 2017. Mr.Tessier was also very involved in the college and university student movement during his studies and chaired the Accreditation Committee established under the Act Respecting the Accreditation and Financing of Students’ Associations.
Vice-president responsible for the youth mandate
Suzanne Arpin holds a Bachelor of Laws (LL.B) from the Université du Québec à Montréal and has been a member of the Québec Bar since 1984. Ms. Arpin is also an accredited trainer with the National Training Program and holds a graduate certificate in Management and Organizational Development from Université Laval.
She began her career at the Department of Justice before focussing on the practice of social law at the Centre jeunesse des Laurentides from 1988 to 2014. In addition to pleading before the various judicial bodies, she was head of legal affairs at the Centre jeunesse for 12 years. In 2014, Ms. Arpin participated in the creation of the legal department of the Cree Board of Health and Social Services of James Bay dedicated to the Director of Youth Protection. She has worked mainly in the fields of youth protection, adoption, youth criminal justice law, and health and social services.
Ms. Arpin also worked as a prosecutor and then chief prosecutor and spokesperson for the Commission on relations between Indigenous Peoples and certain public services in Québec (Commission Viens) in the fall of 2017 until her appointment as vice-president of the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse in June 2019.
Vice-president responsible for the Charter mandate
Ms. Myrlande Pierre was appointed as Vice-President on June 14, 2019. She is responsible for the mandate entrusted to the Commission by the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms and the Act respecting equal access to employment in public bodies.
Ms. Pierre is a nationally and internationally recognized expert in the field of immigration and socio-economic integration, with a particular focus on the socio-economic integration of racialized minorities. Issues of systemic racism and discrimination, issues affecting ethnocultural and racialized minority women are the cornerstone of her work. She has published extensively on these issues and has been a guest speaker at numerous national and international forums.
Myrlande Pierre has held various positions as senior analyst, public policy strategic advisor as well as management positions over the course of her career, including at Citizenship and Immigration Canada and the Department of Canadian Heritage. Since April 2018, she has been acting principal investigator with the Security Intelligence Review Committee, Research Division, Government of Canada. She also worked at the Conseil des relations interculturelles du Gouvernement du Québec.
Ms. Pierre holds a master's degree in sociology from UQAM and has been a doctoral candidate in sociology (socio-economics) at the Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Geneva since 2018. Her career is also marked by her social commitment. She was notably president of the Table sur la Diversité, l'inclusion et la lutte contre les discriminations of the City of Montréal and co-leader of the Comité État gouvernance et justice of the Groupe de réflexion et d'actions pour une Haïti nouvelle (GRAHN). Myrlande Pierre has received several awards for her involvement in the advancement of the rights of women and racialized minorities. In 2018, she was awarded the Medal of the National Assembly.
Director of the Institut de recherche sur l'intégration professionnelle des immigrants (IRIPI) at Collège de Maisonneuve, Mr. El-Hage is a member of several research centres in the field of intercultural relations (CRIEC, RAPS). His interests focus on diversity management practices in companies and public organizations. He has collaborated on a number of research projects on a variety of topics, including reasonable accommodation, the multiple barriers experienced by racialized LGBTQ people in Montréal, support for radicalization among young CEGEP students, organizational adaptations required in a multi-ethnic workplace, the challenges of intervening in a diversity context, and intercultural mediation in the workplace. He has published a book on intercultural intervention for front-line college counsellors. He is a member of the Board of Directors of La Maisonnée and Qualifications Québec. Mr. El-Hage is also a commissioner at the Office de consultation publique de Montréal and has contributed, among other things, to the public consultation on systemic racism and discrimination.
Ms. Gauvreau has been a member of the Québec Bar since 1979. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree and a Licentiate in Law from the University of Ottawa. She worked at the Centre communautaire juridique de l’Outaouais from 1980 to 2014, where she first practised civil, administrative, social and matrimonial law, then youth protection and family law, before going on to manage four offices as well as continuing to practise law.
Isa Iasenza holds a sociology and industrial relations Bachelor’s degree and was a management consultant with the community and ethnocultural partnership sector at the Centre jeunesse de Montréal – Institut universitaire from 2009 to 2013 and from, 1994 to 2009 was planning, programming and research officer. From 1988 to1996, she was coordinator of the Bureau des services aux communautés culturelles with the Ministry of Health and Social Services.
She was also a program adviser with the Health and social services council of metropolitan Montreal (1984-1988), management consultant with the directorate general of the Santa Cabrini Hospital (1985-1986) and human and community relations officer at the Centre des services sociaux du Montréal Métropolitain (1976-1985).
Marie Laure Leclercq
Marie Laure Leclercq studied engineering, law and business administration and has been working for De Granpré Chait since 1996. Since her transition as a trans person in 2000, she has been involved as a volunteer in the advancement of human rights, particularly within the LGBTQ2+ community. She has delivered several conferences on diversity in the workplace to private firms and law schools as well as in international events such as the Global Workplace Summit in London in 2012. Ms. Leclercq was also appointed Governor of Fondation Émergence in 2017.
Sylvain Le May
Holding a Master’s degree in psychosocial communication from the Université du Québec à Montréal, and a specialized post-graduate diploma in public administration of the École nationale d’administration publique (l'ENAP), Mr. Le May is responsible of the Service d’accueil et de soutien aux étudiants en situation de handicap [Office responsible for helping and supporting students with disabilities] at the Université du Québec à Montréal.
His previous positions include organizing and leading activities for children with autism spectrum disorder and working for Kéroul as a trainer, speaker and facilitator. Communications and development officer at the Association québécoise interuniversitaire des conseillers aux étudiants en situation de handicap, Mr. Le May was also its President from 2008 to 2016. He also served on the Board of Directors of the International Network on the Disability Creation Process (INDCP) from 2011 to 2017. Within the Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE), he currently chairs on the National Committee of Persons with Disabilities, which promotes and defends the rights of all persons with disabilities to improve their daily lives at work and in the communities.
In 2014, he received the first prize of the contest "Mon parcours! Ma carrière!" from 13 partner organizations of the Comité d'adaptation à la main-d'œuvre pour personnes handicapées (CAMO) for his achievements.
Ms. Roy has worked at IBM since 1999 where she has held several positions, including critical situation manager and accounts manager. She set up business resource groups within the organization to support LGBT employees and has been very involved in raising awareness among staff and management about the realities of LGBT people and in promoting their inclusion in the workplace. She is a board member of Pride at Work Canada and sits on the Committee for a Just Society. Until 2015, she was also President of the Fondation Émergence.
Anne-Marie Santorineos, a graduate in law and communications science, is currently the legal writing coordinator at SOQUIJ and was a lawyer at the Québec Human Rights Tribunal. Her master's thesis focused on access to justice in human rights matters. She has also been involved in various research projects on topics including freedom of religion, reasonable accommodation and the right to equality. She has also given several lectures on artificial intelligence and its impact on the law and access to justice.
Mr. Sioui holds a Master’s degree in specialized education-psychoeducation and a PhD in social services. He is a professor at the unité d’enseignement et de recherche en sciences du développement humain et social of the Université du Québec en Abitibi-Témiscamingue (since 2007).
He was also a lecturer and professor with Université de Sherbrooke’s Department of Psychoeducation (1994-2007). He held the position of psychoeducator at the Centre de développement et de formation de la main-d’œuvre huron-wendat (2000-2004) and at the Centre jeunesse de Québec (1980-2000).
Ms. Villefranche is the Executive Director of the Maison d'Haïti. Since more than 30 years, she is devoted to the education and citizen participation of immigrant populations. Involved in the struggles of social and feminist movements, she was an organizing member of the Marche Du pain et des roses. Ms. Villefranche has been honored with several prizes, including: Bâtisseuse de la cité 2017, Personnalité de la semaine La Presse/Radio-Canada in 2012, and, in 2008, the YWCA Women of Distinction Award in the Information and Education category.
Nadine Vollant is a graduate in social work from the Université du Québec à Chicoutimi and is currently pursuing graduate studies in public management in an Aboriginal context. Since January 2017, Ms. Vollant has been Director of Social Services at ITUM (Innu Takuaikan Uashat mak Mani-Utenam). She also collaborates in research projects at the Université du Québec en Outaouais that aim to update the self-determination of youth protection in Uashat mak Mani-Utenam. She was a member of the committee on the life projects of Québec's Aboriginal children to ensure that the cultural particularities of First Nations children and families were respected. She has been involved in various committees dealing with children under the care of the Director of Youth Protection in an Aboriginal context. Her experience includes the economic and social rights provisions of the Charter.
Did you know?
The members of the Commission are appointed by the Assemblée nationale upon the motion of the Premier. These appointments must be approved by two-thirds of the members of the Assemblée.
Anyone can indicate to the National Assembly his or her interest in becoming an officer or a member of the Commission des droits de la personne et des droits de la jeunesse.