Nicole Bellefleur

Director of Strategic Initiatives for the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce

Tracadie

What is your profession & title?
I work for the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce as the Director of Strategic Initiatives, I manage PEI Connectors, a program that helps immigrant entrepreneurs launch, purchase and invest in businesses on PEI.

Were you born in PEI or are you an Islander by choice?
I wasn’t born on PEI, but my heart has been here for as long as I can remember. My mother is an Islander, so my family always spent summers here when we weren’t living here. We finally moved to PEI when I was in high school.

How long have you been living in PEI?
I’ve been living on the Island off and on for many years. After I graduated from the University of Prince Edward Island, I moved to southern Japan to teach English for three years. Afterwards, I returned to PEI for a year, then I moved to Toronto. After eight years in the big city, I came back home... I’m here to stay this time!

Where do you live in PEI?
I live in Tracadie (population 300), a small community with a big spirit on the Island’s north shore.

Describe what an average day looks like for you?
I work full-time, and I’m a single mama to a feisty four-year old girl, so my days are busy! On weekdays, I can be found at the Greater Charlottetown Area Chamber of Commerce helping immigrants pursue business and investment opportunities on PEI.

During the summertime, my daughter and I rush home after work, eat a quick supper, then go for an evening swim at one of the many nearby beaches, take in a ceilidh, or catch up with family or friends visiting from away. We collapse into bed later than we should, but there are so many fun things to do and people to see, and we are determined to make the most of every single minute of summer!

On weekends, we can be found at the Charlottetown Farmer’s Market on Saturdays, and we never miss a Sunday Brunch at the Tracadie Community Center in July and August (our local Lions’ Club feeds us well).

What is your favourite thing about life in PEI?
That there's so much to do in the summertime that I always feel like I’m on vacation, even when I’m not!

What is something people wouldn't know if they're not from the island?
People are often surprised to learn about the Island’s vibrant arts and culture scene. In the summertime, locals and visitors enjoy live theatre and music in church and community halls, in pubs, and in the open air, every night of the week.