Maryse Baribeau
Executive Director
Festival International de la Poésie
(International Poetry Festival)

In the early '80s, Maryse Baribeau founded a communications training company called Communiqu’Image. In 1993, she became the executive director of both the Écrits des Forges publishing house and the Festival International de la Poésie (International Poetry Festival). In August 2005, she decided to leave the Écrits des Forges to focus on running the Festival and her own communications company.

Having graduated in genagogy from the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières, she specialized in functional groups dynamics and has been a communications instructor for close to 30 years. She's given workshops all over the province of Quebec and is well known for her expertise in welcoming strategies, consumer service and public speaking. Her sense of organization, team management and hosting skills ensure all guests and poets have an unforgettable experience in the Poetry Capital.

With her long-time partner Gaston Bellemare, she co-founded the École Nationale de Poésie (National Poetry School) and the Promenade Internationale de Poésie, which includes 100 poems in 21 languages at Trois-Rivières' port park.

Under her leadership, the Festival not only reaches the public, but also schools and various cultural and social organizations. She developed welcoming and promotional tools specific to the poetry world that are now widely used by many conference and seminar organizers passing through Trois-Rivières. Her dynamic personality, leadership and personalized approach contribute to the growing number of partnerships and to further develop new target audiences. Let us also emphasize her innate ability to unite, motivate and make sure everyone she works with, be they poets or volunteers, feels appreciated.

Mrs. Baribeau has been very active on the cultural and tourism scene for many years. She's been on the board of directors of many organizations and has also been invited to sit on many juries and committees. She's now president of the board of directors of FEMMESSOR Mauricie, an organization dedicated to help women in business.

In March 2010, she was named Chevalier (Knight) of the Ordre de la pléiade de la Francophonie et du dialogue des cultures, an initiative of the Assemblée parlementaire de la Francophonie. This distinction recognizes the extraordinary merit of some public figures who've distinguished themselves in the service of the ideals of cooperation and friendship, characteristic of the French-speaking community. In 2006, she was awarded the Ordre de La Vérendrye, the highest civic distinction given by the City of Trois-Rivières. She was also a finalist for the 2006 YWCA-Québec Women of Distinction Awards.