Catherine Newman appointed Chair of the Board of Directors

1 March 2023

Montreal, March 1, 2023 – The Fondation de l’Institut universitaire en santé mentale de Montréal (FIUSMM) is pleased to announce the appointment of Ms. Catherine Newman (iA Financial Group) as Chair of its Board of Directors. She succeeds Mr. Martin Gagnon (National Bank), who has chaired the Board for the past 6 years.


Catherine Newman, an inspiring woman

Photo credit: Andréanne Gauthier

Involved on the FIUSMM Board of Directors since 2021, Catherine Newman has the cause of mental health very much at heart. Having just accepted the title of honorary president for the FIUSMM Benefit Cocktail, Catherine is now taking the reins of the Foundation’s Board of Directors. In the past, she has also been involved with causes such as Leucan, participating in the “shaved head challenge”, and is still involved with the Women’s Centre of Montreal Foundation.

With more than 20 years of experience, Catherine Newman is now Vice President Finance, Financial Reporting at iA Financial Group. A passionate leader who knows how to mobilize those around her, innovation and audacity are part of the equation that motivates her to achieve numerous successes. These are inspiring qualities that promise a superb mandate with the Foundation.

“My parents have experienced mental health challenges, so this cause touches me personally. In Canada, one (1) person in five (5) will personally experience a mental health problem or illness, not counting the people who support them. With the Foundation team, the members of the Board of Directors and our loyal donors and volunteers, I am confident that together we will move the cause forward.”



The Foundation salutes Martin Gagnon for his 6 years of support and complicity

Catherine Newman takes over from Martin Gagnon, Co-President and Co-Chief Executive Officer, National Bank Financial, and Senior Executive Vice-President, Wealth Management.

Highly valued by the Board, the Foundation team and its major donors, Martin has served as Chairman of the Board for the past 6 years. An inspiring leader and generous philanthropist, he has actively contributed to the Foundation’s various fundraising campaigns, notably the last major campaign which raised $9,843,755, a great success!

A man of action, Martin also supported the Foundation’s team in setting up the “mobile grocery store”, an innovative initiative to deal with the obstacles of the pandemic.

For several years now, he has also been very involved in the project to relocate the IUSMM’s Crisis Centre, visiting potential locations, approaching the government and meeting with all kinds of people.

His involvement, availability and good humour will be missed, but Martin will remain close to the Foundation and the cause.

“I have loved my years with this wonderful organization that has allowed me to discover a cause that, despite being less and less taboo, still causes suffering to millions of people every year. That is why I will always take it to heart and wish the foundation continued success in its mission to support research and ever more innovative clinical projects in mental health. I am confident that this will be the case, with Catherine Newman taking over as Chair of the Board.”


New arrival on the Board of Directors: Ms. Lucie Houle

The Foundation’s team is also delighted to announce the arrival of Dr. Lucie Houle, Vice President Culture and Talent, Employee Experience Sector at National Bank, to its Board of Directors.

A psychologist by training, with over 20 years of experience in business, Lucie is a leader with a passion for people and a commitment to the success of groups and organizations by focusing on leadership development and the creation of inclusive environments that support the well-being and progress of all. She complements and strengthens the talents of the current team, for the benefit of a cause that has always been dear to her. In particular, she will be an important ally in the governance of projects related to mental health research and the support of innovative clinical projects.

“For me, mental health is an essential part of a society’s wealth and the quality of life of its individuals and businesses. It is a privilege to join such a great team to continue to advance this important cause.”


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