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Joël Thibert

  • Scholar 2010
  • Alumni
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Vice President of Energy Planning and Strategy

    Joel Thibert holds a Master's degree in Urban Planning from McGill University and a Ph.D. in Public Policy from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton, where his research focused on regional governance and development. He also completed his undergraduate studies in environment and development at McGill University as a Loran Scholar.

    He recently joined Hydro-Québec as Vice President of Energy Planning and Strategy, where he is responsible for integrated energy resource planning aimed at decarbonizing the province's economy. He previously spent over 10 years in consulting with McKinsey & Company, where he developed expertise in strategic and integrated planning, asset management, and operational transformation in a number of industrial sectors, including materials and energy.


    Experience as a Trudeau Scholar

    First you feel like an imposter, like someone who has no business being there. Then, you start to meet inspiring and passionate people, a disparate group that makes you want to live fully, learn, share, and take your ideas as far as you can. These encounters lead to long stretches of talking, listening, and brainstorming solutions –  you end up exhausted and drained after every event. After a while, you find your niche within the Trudeau community ecosystem. There's a tendency to stay there, not because you're afraid of difference, but because we're all human and our capacity to absorb new perspectives has its limits. Yet, it's precisely when things become comfortable, when the temptation to remain ensconced in your position is strongest, that it's most crucial to break free.  Join other people's conversations, step outside your comfort zone, and be vulnerable.  This is the beauty of the strange tribe that is the Trudeau community: a motley gathering of bodies, minds, and souls from different backgrounds who share a common thirst for truth, love, and freedom. If all we seek and find amongst each other is comfort, then we've resolutely turned our backs on the search for what is truly essential: truth, beauty, and fragility. "Be irreverent!" PG used to say. I say, "Be humble and let others challenge your perspectives!" We are here to grow and question ourselves deeply, not merely to passively observe the world from afar. So, what are we waiting for?