• Frances LeBlanc

    I am the Chief Executive Officer of the New Brunswick Chiropractors Association (NBCA). The New Brunswick Chiropractors Association works to improve the health and wellbeing of New Brunswickers by regulating, supporting and promoting excellence in chiropractic practice and patient care.

    I have been working and serving the association and not-for-profit sectors for a decade, and highly motivated by the community. Yet, it is only in 2018 that I really started to engage with CSAE, initially as a consumer of products like the webinars and as a CAE program student. Since, I have been supporting the development of an Atlantic chapter, as well as young professional and government relations activities. 

    Early on, I was looking to benefit from the greater access to resources and tools to help us complete the work ahead and learn from others best practices. That remains an important benefit, but even more so, the access to an engaged network of professionals that are willing to share ideas and expertise to help each other strive has been incredible. 

    Why did you initially join CSAE?

    I needed support. I had been hired in a new role to, in part, help improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the organization. With limited resources and internal capacity, I realized quickly that we would have to be extra creative and leverage existing or new partnerships to be able to meet our goals. In addition, I would need to further develop skills and knowledge as an association executive and promptly enrolled in the CAE program. Shortly thereafter, we also became a CSAE member and immediately was able to access a wide array of tools, resources and connect with a vast network of experienced professionals.

    What do you get out of your membership with CSAE?

    Initially, I was looking to access resources and tools to help us complete the work ahead and learn from others’ best practices. That remains an important benefit, but even more so, the access to an engaged network of professionals that are willing to share ideas and expertise to help each other strive has been incredible. Associations Connect, for example, is a valuable platform which allows us to connect with professionals from Coast to Coast to share, connect and even collaborate. The informal building of network also translates in real-life partnerships. Associating with CSAE has also allowed me to get a better understanding of the sector and to get involved in supporting the growth of the sector itself.

    How do you stay connected to aspiring leaders in the association and not-for-profit sector? 

    I make a concerted effort to connect with people and to maintain positive professional working relationships. Since moving back to NB almost 4 years ago, I have connected with professional or community groups locally and regionally. In addition, to further build my network while serving the community, I also volunteer on a few Boards and Committees which is a great opportunity to connect with other aspiring leaders while working together to advance a cause. Furthermore, the CAE program and Associations Connect platform are great venues to further foster connections with aspiring and established leaders. I have had the privilege to work with incredibly talented professionals and want to make sure that we stay connected and collaborative.

    What keeps you motivated? 

    Truly believing in the value of the work and that it has a positive impact on the lives of New Brunswickers.

    What has surprised you most about your professional journey so far?

    The journey is not linear. I am reminded of the saying: “Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans”. Having goals and ambitions are important, but the reality remains that we never know what opportunities may arise nor can we control external factors. Having too rigid plans can actually limit your own potential and may result in missing out on significant growth and opportunity. Someone once told me: If the door doesn’t open, it’s not your door. That has proven to be true and thankfully so – growth really does happen when you are challenged and work outside your “comfort zone”.

    What’s one piece of advice you would like to share with others?

    Stay curious. Always be open to learn either from other colleagues, friends and even strangers you encounter. Increasing demands and pressures on workplaces are requiring personnel to be well-versed in a wide array of skills and knowledge, and to be able to adapt and contribute to the team in new ways. Cross-pollination, especially in the not-for-profit and association sectors, is important and curiosity as an employee may be one of your greatest assets for longevity and overall job satisfaction. 

    Who inspires you?

    I am proudly Acadian. I am inspired by generations of resilient women and men that worked tirelessly to build communities across the Atlantic provinces, and to preserve their cultural and linguistic identities. That certainly also includes my family that continue to inspire hard work hard and always with heart.

    What is your most nostalgic childhood memory?

    I spent my childhood summers boating on the Shediac Bay and have fond memories of sun, sand and play with family and friends. I still love the water and often find solace and peace near it.

    Recommend another CSAE aspiring leader to be featured.

    Marcia Kim

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