Three local businesspeople to judge grand finale of Francophone Ignition Contest

March 2 at the Village musical acadien

ABRAM-VILLAGE – Feb. 8, 2022 – Two entrepreneur-managers and a banker, all well-known Acadians from the Evangeline region, will serve as judges for the grand finale of the 2022 edition of the Francophone Ignition Contest, to be held Wednesday, March 2, starting at 7 p.m. at the Village musical acadien in Abram-Village.

Juges Claudette Thériault, Gilles Arsenault and Alfred Arsenault will have to listen to brief presentations by the three finalists and ask them pointed questions, then decide which of the three proposed entrepreneurial projects deserves an investment of $25,000 and other rewards to help them kickstart their business.

The popular event will be held in an atmosphere similar to the television shows Shark Tank and Dragons’ Den. The public is invited to attend free of charge but interested parties must register by Feb. 25 by contacting Josée Ouellette at Masks and PEI Vax Pass are required for all who attend.

“Claudette Thériault and Alfred Arsenault have both served as judges in past editions of our competition, but this is Gilles Arsenault’s first time,” says competition coordinator Felicity Montgomery. “We have no doubt that they will all ask the right questions of our competitors and make a well-thought-out choice.”


Claudette Thériault holds a Bachelor’s degree and a Master’s degree in business administration (from Université Laval and Université de Moncton, respectively). A few years ago, she established CM Thériault Consultants after retiring from a 32-year career in the federal and provincial public service. She has worked with the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, the PEI Francophone Affairs Division and Human Resources Development Canada. Over the years, she has served on numerous boards and committees of all types, most recently as the dedicated chair of the organizing committee of the 2019 Congrès mondial acadien.

Gilles Arsenault is the owner of « It’s All Good » Sportswear. Previously, he was the owner of La Lobster Shack: Gilles Alva and Les Chalets Rendez-Vous and co-owner of Café Bistro Le Zoo. Arsenault was a teacher and then principal of École Évangéline (1996-2011). He then became president of the PEI Teachers’ Federation (2011-2015) and more recently was a development officer with RDÉE Prince Edward Island. He continued his career with the Department of Education and Lifelong Learning where he was coordinator of French programs and later became a senior advisor for the department. Since last summer, he has been the executive director of the PEI French Language School Board.

Alfred Arsenault completed his Bachelor of Administration degree at the Université de Moncton in 1988. The following year, he was hired as a loan officer at Évangéline Credit Union. He was promoted to assistant manager in 1993 and general manager in 1997. Under his leadership, the institution became Évangéline-Central Credit Union and tripled its size to include three branches. When the institution merged with four other credit unions in 2021, it became Provincial Credit Union and Alfred Arsenault became the chief operations officer of its 10 branches. Over the years, Arsenault has served as an advisor to PEI Credit Union Central, corporate secretary of the Credit Union PEI Investment Corporation and director of League Data.



PHOTOS: Alfred Arsenault, Claudette Thériault and Gilles Arsenault will serve as judges for the 2022 grand finale of RDÉE PEI’s Francophone Ignition Contest.


For more information, please contact
Felicity Montgomery
Francophone Ignition Contest