Meet Michèle Boileau-Barmash, Head of Reebok’s Victoria Beckham Partnership.
Her daunting title speaks for itself, but her down-to-earth personality is refreshing and contagious. The proud French-Canadian gives us a peek into her life and career path leading her up to current success.

 

 

Michèle exuberantly exclaims that one of the first things she says when she meets people from outside of Canada is that she is “French Canadian” and one of her fondest memories of our country is hockey, “I owe a lot of the opportunities in life thanks to that sport,” she confesses. With a younger brother, Michèle explains that she spent an “ungodly amount of time in hockey rinks growing up,” herself a hockey player and spectator watching her brother play. It was definitely a family affair, as her family members were “always there cheering us on, and I’m incredibly proud of that.” With both her grandfather and great uncle being members of the Montreal Canadiens organization, she was exposed to elite athletes and divulges that she would just “marvel at their level of play.” Growing up in a tight knit family, they have always remained close, and, to this day prioritize family time “regardless of [where] people are in the world.”

 

As sports played a predominant role in Michèle’s life, her parents instilled the importance of academics. Recalling an interview with the Montreal Gazette stating that she wanted to be a “sports psychologist” after graduating university, Michèle chuckles, “Look at me now…not exactly where I thought I’d be, right?” Speaking about the future, she divulges that she “had no clue” about what she wanted to study after high school: “I always had a love for beauty and fashion, and I dreamed of working in those industries, but I didn’t think it could really happen for me,” she reveals. Michèle went on to study English Literature as she thought that it “could be applied to anything.”

 

 

Fast forward past her academic years, to Michèle kicking off her career in the beauty industry, which “happened out of pure luck,” she exclaims. After having to move back to Montreal, she accepted a job as an assistant at L’Oréal’s head office. “It was the best introduction… Where I fell in love with communications and PR, and, to this day, made lifelong friends,” she states. While building an incredible foundation at L’Oréal, Michele’s first boss, Nat Kristo, was “fundamentally the first person that I thought believed that I had potential in the industry – she would give me side projects and keep me motivated.” Since her early days, Michele’s “steady rock and role model” is her dear friend Céline del Genes who “has paved her own way and shown me that taking risks is what it’s all about – always trust your intuition.”

 

With ample experience under her belt, Michèle began to look for opportunities in the Boston area, when “sheer luck” struck again; the position to be part of the Global PR team for Reebok Classics in the lifestyle category popped up. The stars aligned once again, and, “from the moment I spoke to the recruiter, I knew it was the job for me,” she states.

Three weeks after the interview, Michele found herself back in Boston.

 

 

With the Reebok team she has had some hefty career achievements which she is quite proud of: Kendrink Lamar 5K in LA performing on a flatbed truck, Gigi Hadid Perfect Never which challenged the notions of perfection with a powerhouse panel of women, Coachella House with performances from Solange and Sampha, Ariana Grande in Hong Kong, and the list continues. With a rock-star lineup of accomplishments, she states that “taking a leap of faith and taking the role that I am currently in, is my greatest achievement so far. I am proud to be part of something that I fundamentally believe has impact on my brand’s business and I get to lead all of it.” With a stellar line up of accomplishments, she considers the most amazing women she has collaborated with are: Victoria Beckham, Gigi Hadid, and Ariana Grande, who “have had a significant impact in my life, and I’m lucky enough to consider them girlfriends of mine.”

 

From befriending some of the world’s most famous women as friends, Michele attributes her success to three simple things: “hard work, being kind, and always finding solutions.” What keeps her motivated is that she “is literally doing what I love, and so it doesn’t feel like work. I have the most amazing team, colleagues, and partners. I feel incredibly fortunate.”  

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