A word from our 2023 edition Honorary President
A graduate in civil engineering from Laval University in 1986 and holding a master’s degree in business administration, Ms. Marie-Claude Houle has been President and Chief Executive Officer of EBC since 1999.
Following her studies, Marie-Claude Houle began her career in the family business founded by her father Fernand Houle and her uncle Germain Houle in 1968. She began in construction as a project manager. Upon obtaining her MBA, she became director of quality, where she made her mark by implementing a quality management and continuous improvement system at EBC. She then held the position of assistant to the vice-president of construction, project director of the building division and then president and CEO of the company in 1999.
Ms. Houle is very involved in her industry by sitting on numerous boards of directors as well as in the community, supporting several social causes, mainly Centraide, the Red Cross, PartenaireSanté and Le Chaînon.
She made history by becoming the first woman elected to the presidency of the Association of Road Builders and Major Works of Quebec (ACRGTQ) in 2018.
President, unifier and creator of wealth, she transmits her passion for work and her sense of excellence to more than 1,500 site workers and 400 office employees. His human values and his determination are sources of inspiration for his peers and employees.
Ms. Houle knew how to develop the company. Since his arrival at the head of the company in 1999, sales have increased from $100 million to $1 billion, which places EBC among the largest construction companies in Canada. It is now $1.5 billion that is targeted for 2025.
Winner of several awards, Ms. Houle notably won the Prix Femmes d’affaires du Québec in 2018, in the Executive, manager or professional, private company category. She also received the Inspiration award from Les Elles de la construction in 2018, the distinction of the Club des entrepreneurs du Conseil du patronat du Québec in 2016, the Summa award from Université Laval in 2010 and the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur Grand Prix – Construction category in 2008.
Why did you choose to get involved in the contest?
Entrepreneurial succession is the future of our industry, but it is rare. It is important to support the next generation because they have to deal with a headwind that can put off many of them: labor shortages, explosion in the cost of raw materials and interest rates, financing, pandemic, etc. I know something about it, you have to be determined to take the reins of a business in operation and be passionate about taking it even further.
The time has come for so many companies to begin the succession process, plan it well and prepare the optimal transfer that will ensure long-term continuity and prosperity. It’s not easy, but it is possible!
It gives me great pleasure to preside over the 2023 edition of the Les Médaillés de la relève competition in order to support family and entrepreneurial succession and to highlight their perseverance, the excellence of their work and their success.
President & CEO