Lucie Bernatchez Mainguy co-founder and CEO of Aliksir from 1988 to 2022 is now retired and can now fully assume her role as eldest.
I am Lucie B. Mainguy or even more now, great-grandmother Lucie. If you allow, between us, we will just say "Grandmother".
To sum up a long diversified career I would like to talk about my 7 lives. Born in the city of Quebec, I spent my summers at Lake St Augustin, which we watched getting polluted in the 70s and 80s. Favorite topics of conversation at home: law, justice, laws and agriculture. My father was a judge son of a market gardener; my mother, daughter of a notary, would have liked to be a notary but still loved her 9 children.
I chose to study architecture, attracted by an art that has a practical meaning. In 1973 we bought a farm in Grondines and the taste of the forest, lakes and rivers, I caught it from my husband Pierre Mainguy whom I knew at the school of architecture and who told me these wonders of crystalline waters in cascades full of brook trout which go up the rapids.
In 1988, after a period of 13 years reconciling teaching architectural techniques at the Cégep de Trois-Rivières and raising sheep (me a shepherdess and sheep midwife), my darling, father of our 7 children buys with my brother a tank to distil the branches of our conifers and extract the essential oils.
For me, a few months later, the love story of oils begins with a book by Jean Valnet, a military doctor who, following Maurice Gattefossé's research work, had the opportunity to discover the healing properties of essential oils and who published in 1976 in paperback format: "Aromatherapy" or "Treatment of diseases by the essences of plants" .
A shocking revelation for me. To my knowledge, these substances, almost miraculous according to him, were not used by the medical field or offered to the public by their doctor. I therefore quite naturally begin by doubting these assertions and I undertake to verify them through personal experiences and tests. It must be admitted that on my long experience and the thousands of tests carried out by my clients, I no longer need to be convinced now but I remember this doctor to whom I explain what I discover and who answers me “Come on! if it was that good, they would have told me” … oops!!! I admit that I then wonder what is wrong with the training of doctors.