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Q&A with Julie, Communications Officer

September 16, 2022

Julie Turmel joined the Green Marine team as Communications Manager in November 2020. Before joining Green Marine, she worked at the Port of Quebec, also as a communications officer. She holds a Bachelor’s in Public Communications from l’Université Laval.

Her role within Green Marine is diverse! She is involved in the organization’s various internal and external communications projects, including the newsletter’s production, the website’s management, social media coordination, and membership support. She provides support for the entire team when it comes to any communications, as well as being extensively involved in GreenTech’s logistics.

Q: What attracted you to the field of communications, and more specifically within the maritime industry?

A: Being the youngest in my family, my choices were often influenced by my sisters and brother. Although native to Sherbrooke, Quebec, I decided to pursue my bachelor’s degree at l’Université Laval in Quebec City for the adventure of living on my own in a bigger city. I fell in love with the city, especially the maritime landscape of its river and its access to the world! Upon completing my studies, I happened to see a job offer at the Port of Quebec: the position’s responsibilities, the team of professionals, and the work environment on the banks of the St. Lawrence River seduced me even though I knew nothing about the maritime realm. So, it’s by chance that I ended up in this industry where I’ve learned a lot, but which still holds secrets for me.

Q: Why did you choose to work for Green Marine and what motivates you to stay?

A: My growing passion for the outdoors has fueled my curiosity about fauna, flora and the environment in general. I always tell myself that if I ever had to choose a new profession, I would pursue environmental studies!

When I worked at the Port of Quebec, I quickly developed an interest in communications about the port’s sustainable development initiatives, particularly in the creation of different content related to the port’s nesting box for swallows. As the Port of Quebec is one of Green Marine’s founding members, I was prompted to relate the port’s commitment to this environmental certification program and quickly became interested in this voluntary initiative by the industry.

Then I met Véronique Trudeau who was working at the time on a contract basis for the Port of Quebec and we got on well together. When she left to work at Green Marine in 2019 as a Program Manager, I asked her to let me know if a communications position ever opened up… which turned out to be the case within less than a year! Since then, several factors have forged my sense of belonging at Green Marine: the determination of my colleagues to improve the industry’s environmental performance, the professional and amicable chemistry that I have developed with my colleague Manon in communications, the accessibility and attentiveness of my boss, and not the least the new Green Marine “merch” that I now wear all too often! #represent

Q: Last June, you were able to attend – after organizing most of it! – your first GreenTech conference in person after the event was held virtually in 2021. What do you recall most from this experience?

A: That virtual events can never equate with those held in person!

That with good organization, we can achieve great things with minimal staff!

My first GreenTech was in 2021 – an online version of the conference. It was fun to organize and filled with great challenges, such as choosing and then mastering the event platform. Whenever everything is being done virtually, however, we can get the impression that we’re facing more factors out of our control, such as the quality of the Internet connection of the conference speakers.

I really like the experience I had at this year’s conference this past June! The organization went smoothly, thanks again, to our meticulous organization and our team being on fire! In November 2021, when I saw all the things that had be done to organize the June 2022 conference, I was concerned about whether it was possible with the time we had to make it all happen. Now, I am a lot more confident about our capabilities: the Green Marine team can move mountains a chuck at a time.

And, of course, I really enjoyed meeting people in the Green Marine network, putting faces to names, along with adding a third dimension to familiar faces.

Q: Since you started in your position, several communications projects have been developed. What aspect gives you the most pride?

A: It should be noted that my arrival at Green Marine basically doubled the number of staff on the communications team! With the team going from one to two people, the means and possibilities of communication have also doubled.

We, therefore, were able to build a detailed Green Marine communications strategy in 2021, with the scheduling of recurring initiatives and our new ideas based on the organization’s goals. The communications plan includes the newsletter’s redesign – visually and in terms of its contents – along with the first social media campaign designed for the participants to share with the general public.

Both falling under my responsibility, these two initiatives have proven to be successful and I’m very proud of them. We’re again doing the social media campaign this year because it has been so effective in terms of communicating with the public. I must point out that these achievements were possible thanks to Manon’s great confidence. She is a golden manager who gives me a lot of leeway and often embarks on my occasionally somewhat crazy ideas.

I also had a lot of fun working in support of Manon on Green Marine’s website redesign. We’re very happy with it! The exercise was very formative: it required a lot of meticulous work, excellent organization, clear and effective communication and a lot – too much – copying and pasting!

Q: What helps you to knock off work and maintain a balance outside the office hours?

A: I am fortunate to have an employer who advocates for a healthy life balance! During the week I like to vary my work schedule by, for example, going for a run at lunchtime or to a café to do some work. Otherwise, once my computer is shut off at the end of the day, I often take the opportunity to stretch my legs by playing a bit of sports, such as tennis or volleyball.

In general, I try to take advantage of the great outdoors as much as possible, always wonderfully accompanied by my boyfriend, my family, my friends or a good craft beer 😉!

Q: If you could select one participant to visit in person, who would it be and why?

R: Of course, every port has its own interesting characteristics. But if I had to choose one, I would say the Port of Vancouver! The port’s communications and transparency greatly inspired during my duties at the Port of Quebec. Therefore, in addition to visiting the facilities, I would insist on meeting its communications team to learn more about its functioning and dynamics.