7 questions for Camille Dozois Germain, horticulture and parks forewoman

Last updated February 18, 2024
Reading time: 3 min

Camille, a  woman of action, has been responsible for the horticulture team in Anjou since the summer of 2020. As a forewoman, her days are never the same, and working alongside her team, she spends them beautifying the city and implementing the numerous project ideas that she has in mind.

What does your occupation as forewoman in Anjou consist of?

When the season is in full swing, I coordinate a team of 10 to 12 people.

During the winter, I help with snow removal operations, which are a priority for the borough during snowfalls.

At the same time, I work on development plans to plant annuals, perennials, shrubs and trees. I also prepare submissions and orders for the next season and award various horticulture contracts. 

Once spring arrives, I work to apply the preparations developed during the winter. I coordinate planting, maintenance and watering activities. I supervise the work operations and update my horticulture calendar to ensure that we meet the deadlines that are set, right up until the fall.

What first motivated you to become a forewoman at the city?

I love being in the thick of the action, and I always have several projects in mind. For me, becoming a forewoman at the city was an opportunity to put my ideas into practice, show my true colours, and hone my management skills.

What do you like most about your job?

I like working out in the field, the challenges it involves, and working with people. 

I enjoy working on concrete things and seeing the projects we work on as a team bear fruit. What I’m most passionate about is being able to apply new ideas, coming up with solutions, and optimizing operations.

Can you tell us what a typical day looks like for a horticulture and parks forewoman in Anjou?

There is no typical day, I’d say; every day is different, which is an aspect of my work that I really enjoy! 

In horticulture, the weather has a big influence on our operating activities. Sometimes we’re at the mercy of Mother Nature.

In general, I start bright and early, at about 6:30 a.m. I have to coordinate my work crews, assign tasks, provide the tools and equipment they need, and oversee the execution of the work. I also have to respond to various requests from residents and to emergencies.

What is your academic and professional background? 

I received my diploma of college studies in an ornamental horticulture technique.

I went on to work in landscaping for a private company. 

I finally started working as a white-collar worker for the city in a different borough,  where I developed my technical skills in arboriculture and horticulture. My objective was already to become a forewoman, because I knew it would allow me to apply all the professional and technical knowledge I acquired.

What advice would you give someone aspiring to become a foreperson?

It’s an amazing occupation, but you have to be prepared to invest time and energy into it. Self-confidence is a must, and you also need to have a vision and to believe in it. The days are not always easy, because a number of challenges and contingencies can come up on a daily basis. 

That said, when you take a step back and see all the projects that you successfully achieved, you feel a sense of accomplishment, and you feel proud of yourself and your team. It’s such a rewarding feeling.

What main qualities are required to practice this occupation, in your view?

For me, it requires good interpersonal skills, first and foremost. 

You have to be able to listen to others, to be diplomatic and adaptable, and you need to have a good sense of organization.