Biography of Alliance President Monique Leroux released

6 Apr 2016

The newly released biography “Ma vie en mouvement” traces the journey of Monique Leroux from her musical beginnings to the world of finance and co-operatives. Having been the first woman to lead Desjardins Group, the sixth largest financial group in the world, Ms Monique Leroux continues on the path of co-operative leadership, heading the International Co-operative Alliance, whose members elected her as their new president in November 2015.

The biography, written in French and authored by Ms Leroux in collaboration with Benoit Gignac, is titled “Ma vie en mouvement”. While the literal translation would be “My life in motion”, the book focuses on her experience in the co-operative movement.

Ms Leroux discovered music at an early age – listening to Metropolitan Opera concerts on the radio was a family tradition – and she became an accomplished pianist. She believes her musical background has helped her in the finance sector, as in finance, a message and intention can be found behind the numbers, just as is possible with music, she explains in her biography.

She values her professional experience equally. Mrs Leroux was a member of an orchestra, a teacher, an accountant and administrator, an auditor and a lecturer. The book also touches upon her hobbies, such as cooking, cycling and gardening – and her life with husband Marc and daughter Anne-Sophie.

In 1988 Mrs Leroux became an associate at Ernst and Young, one of the big five accounting and consulting companies at that time. It was there that she first worked with Desjardins, who became a client of E&Y in 1994. She was already familiar with the essential role played by Desjardins in the development of the province of Quebec. She describes how at Desjardins she discovered a democratic enterprise based on co-operative values such as solidarity, common good and engagement, how she expanded the business and and how she introduced innovative new concepts, such as the Desjardins Lab.

As president, chair of the board and chief executive officer of Desjardins, Monique Leroux says she felt like a conductor of an orchestra directing a music performance, but one that had started over one hundred years ago, by founder Mr. Alphonse Desjardins.

With Ms Leroux leaving Desjardins this month after having completed the maximum of two four-year terms, she will take her co-operative symphony further upwards, now to lead the global co-operative movement, in her role of president of the International Co-operative Alliance.

Monique Leroux’ biography “Ma vie en mouvement”, is available (in French) to order at http://www.tcmedialivres.com/p/17/c/9/l/2307/ma-vie-en-mouvement.

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