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In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act.
It is with the deepest sadness that we inform the world of the French-speaking evaluation of the sudden death of Madame Marie Gervais on December 18. Marie was a compass for French-speaking evaluators, from the youngest to the most experienced. She was at the heart of the creation of EvalYouth, one of the major networks of EvalPartners to which she contributed as a representative of the Réseau Francophone de l’Evaluation (RFE), and therefore of the involvement of hundreds of young professionals in evaluation. Marie had been an active member of the Société québécoise de l'évaluation de programme (SQEP) which she represented at the RFE. She sat for five years on the RFE board of directors, of which she was also Vice-President, moderating debates, contributing to the organization of the first two International Francophone Evaluation Forums and guiding the establishment of the Réseau francophone des évaluateurs émergents (RF-Ee).
Marie Gervais had an important academic career. She participated in the training of countless young evaluators in the graduate program she piloted within the Faculty of Medicine at Laval University. She had recently retired after nearly thirty years of involvement.
Marie's contributions were recognized by the SQEP which awarded her its Recognition Award in 2007, by the Canadian Evaluation Society which made her its recipient of the Contribution to Evaluation in Canada award in 2012 and by the RFE which awarded it its Prize for contribution to the development of evaluation in Francophonie in 2019. The mention accompanying this last distinction also indicated: "The RFE awards its Prize for contribution to the development of evaluation in Francophonie to Marie Gervais for her pillar role in the establishment of the RFE which she played in addition to being personally involved in associative life in Quebec and in several African countries. She has helped train generations of evaluators both through her academic work and through her support to EvalYouth and the RF-Ee. Through her involvement in IOCE and EvalPartners, Marie made the French-speaking voice heard internationally."
Beyond her professional mark and her imprint through her voluntary involvement in the national and international cause of evaluation, Marie touched us personally by her kindness, her gentleness, her inner strength, her desire to overcome difficulties, her energy and her immense availability to the people around her.
She leaves the world better than she took it.
Benoît Gauthier, Thiery Tsou Fematouo, Guy Cauquil, RFE presidents
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