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Fisheries and Oceans Canada
For life-long exemplary leadership in the development and transfer of technology in Canada.
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
The respect and affection warm their voices when they speak of him: "He really is a remarkable person... . he's always given a lot of himself... .his satisfaction comes from seeing someone else's success".
They're speaking of Mr. Paul Bellemare, Regional Director (Quebec Region) of the Canadian Hydrographic Service, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, and winner of the 2003 FPTT Award for Leadership in Technology Transfer. "They" are the colleagues and friends who are eloquent in their praise of a person who has been a leader in technology development and transfer for nearly 25 years.
Mr. Bellemare began his career with the Canadian Hydrographic Service (CHS) in 1978, at a time when the CHS was establishing its first office in Quebec. He quickly took a leadership role as Manager of Data Acquisition and, soon after, became one of the youngest Regional Directors in CHS history. He has since occupied a number of other positions, including Director of Planning, Program Planning and Coordination in Ottawa, before returning to his present position as Regional Director, CHS, in Mont-Joli, Quebec.
During this time, Mr. Bellemare influenced many with his visionary thinking, his unfailing enthusiasm for cooperative approaches to advancement, and his infectious confidence in the abilities of people. Described as "an entrepreneur posing as a bureaucrat", he firmly believes that solutions created by Canadians, if developed correctly, are often applicable to issues in other parts of the world. For example, through his involvement, Brooke Ocean Technology of Halifax completed a million-dollar contract to use an adaptation of its crane-based launch system to aid in the Kursk recovery operation with the Russian Navy. The launch system had originally been developed to solve the problems with the launch and recovery of remotely-controlled platforms at sea.
Mr. Bellemare is also unwavering in his desire to see Canada and Canadians at the forefront of technological developments, often getting personally involved to help close a deal. A few years ago, he travelled to Singapore to convince their Port Authority of the value of the CARIS Software Suite to their operations. CARIS is now used by 50 countries around the world to manage their ports and waterways information needs.
This commitment to developing international markets has resulted in impressive benefits to Canada: value to Canadian companies from the sale and export of the advances Mr. Bellemare has championed are in the tens of millions of dollars, and include hundreds of person-years of employment for Canadians. As Paul Lacroix of Quester Tangent explains, "Paul [Bellemare] has undoubtedly been one of the contributing reasons why [we have] succeeded and grown to a company that has generated sales of over $33 million and created 500 person-years of employment in Canada over the last years."
Denis Hains, Acting Dominion Hydrographer and one of the nominators, sums up Mr. Bellemare's approach: "He has always been an inspiration and a catalyst in the organization. Paul very often says that things should be simple, but not simplistic. This has become a mantra for me, too."
Smart & Biggar
From left to right: Paul Bellemare, Fisheries and Oceans Canada — Catherine Eckenswiller, Smart & Biggar