The pressure is growing so that the largest railway company in the country, the Canadian National, criticized for the absence of Francophones in its ranks, chooses more than one French-speaking administrator on its board of directors.
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This week, the question was raised by Bloc Québécois MP Mario Beaulieu during the testimony of the leader, Tracy Robinson, to the Official Languages Committee in Ottawa.
In an interview with Le Journal, the ex-director of Rona, Robert Dutton, agrees with the proposal. He had also done the same thing, on the contrary, when the Quebec hardware store had broken into the Canadian market.
“When we did the development in Canada, we went looking for Anglophones. We had three-four out of 12. So three French-speaking administrators at CN, that wouldn't be unrealistic,” says the man who is now an associate professor at HEC Montreal.
According to him, the selection process may take some time, but CN will have no problem finding qualified candidates in Quebec.
“It’s like replacing a senior manager, it takes more than two months. But CN is looking for francophones who have skills and there are a lot of them in Quebec,” he said.
enough competent people
The first French-language institution dedicated to the training of directors, the College of Corporate Directors (CAS) follows the process very closely and took the lead a few weeks ago during all the controversy surrounding CN.
On its LinkedIn page, the CAS recalled that there are several corporate directors who are “rigorously trained” in Quebec.
“In fact, we have trained more than 1,300 French-speaking administrators over the past 17 years. [...] The pool of trained people exists and the pool of competent people who have no training also exists, ”said the president of the CAS, Chantale Coulombe.
The boss of CN indicated for her part that the appointment of the new member of the board of directors will be made in the coming weeks.