About the AFLCR
The Alliance Française of the Lake Champlain Region (AFLCR) is based in Burlington, Vermont where French history goes back 400 years. The AFLCR is dedicated to engendering awareness of French culture through a variety of activities, including those that take advantage of our proximity to francophone Canada.
AFLCR programs include French language classes, monthly French conversation luncheons and films, children’s playgroups, as well as picnics, potluck parties, and member outings throughout Vermont and Québec. Members receive regular notices about cultural events throughout the region, and the monthly mise à jour of current schedules and news.
The AFLCR is affiliated with the Federation of Alliances Françaises USA, the largest network of centers for French language and culture in the world.
L’Alliance Française de la Région du Lac Champlain sert les francophones et les francophiles de la zone métropolitaine de Burlington, Vermont, et toute la région. Nous promouvons la culture et la langue françaises en offrant des classes de langues, un ciné-club ainsi qu’une grande variété d’activités, en profitant bien sûr de notre proximité avec la nation francophone canadienne voisine. Chez nous, nous fêtons la terre et les eaux où ont eu lieu quatre siécles d’histoire française.
Downtown Burlington: 43 King Street, Burlington, VT 05401
Colchester: Alliance Française 123 Ethan Allen Avenue, Suite 302, Colchester, VT 05446
Meet our Teachers
Micheline Tremblay – Directrice
Micheline is a career-long French teacher from Québec originally, where she began teaching before establishing herself here for 30 years at Colchester Middle and High Schools. She inherited the direction of the French Language Center at the AFLCR in the early 2000s, and has since that time also become the “point person” for all inquiries coming into the Alliance, be they academic or not. During her tenure as Directrice, course offerings have expanded from two to five sessions per year, and from classrooms in Colchester only to include Burlington and Montpelier. The number of private tutoring sessions have also greatly increased in parallel. Micheline is actively involved in many AF projects including the Annual Gala Dinner fund-raiser and the Deuxième Samedi conversational gathering, not to mention her year-round efforts to coordinate a number of different classes and to ensure students are properly placed. It is her hope in the coming years to increase enrollment of younger students, and also to improve awareness of the depth and richness of Québécois and the culture it reflects.
Alysse was born in the French-speaking region of Switzerland to a Swiss mother and aSpanish father. After college, she left Switzerland and began teaching French in Bogota, Colombia. Later, she taught at the Washington International School in DC, followed by teaching in middle and high schools in Vermont. Her passion for French led her to work in private, public, and continuing education classrooms, with language learners from ages 8-88. For five summers, Alysse was the Assistant Director at the Middlebury Monterey Language Academy (MMLA), where her role spanned both managerial and teaching responsibilities in a residential language immersion program for high school students. In addition to teaching different level classes at the Alliance Française of the Lake Champlain Region (2011-present), she also runs her own business: Your French Connection (https://www.yourfrenchconnection.net), a language immersion program providing French learning experiences in the “cultural classrooms” of Québec Province and France. Alysse lives in Burlington with her husband and dog.
Carmen Ana Pont
Carmen Ana Pont was born in Puerto Rico. She is the daughter of a Francophile who learned his French with LP’s and bought woolen berets for his daughters to show them off in tropical San Juan. She grew up with yet another Francophile, la “tante Lumière (Luz),” mother of French poodles Antoine and Coquette, cousins to our family’s poodle Jean-Pierre. Given this environment, what else could Carmen do with her life but study French at fourteen, with the Alliance books, bien sûr, and later pursue French Studies?
After finishing her year abroad in Strasbourg, and graduating with a BA in French, she earned a Ph.D. in French from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and later a Ph.D. in Hispanic and Latin American Studies from the Sorbonne Nouvelle.
Carmen has lived in France, in French-speaking Belgium, Canada and Switzerland. She has a passion for world poetry, films, chamber music, manuscripts, and the works of Marguerite Yourcenar, the first woman admitted to the Académie Française.
She has taught French and Spanish in universities in Puerto Rico, the United States and Belgium. Her poetry and scholarly work have been published in both sides of the Atlantic. She is an Independent Scholar living in Vermont.
After retirement from thirty-five years on the French faculty of the University of Vermont’s Department of Romance Languages, Grant taught courses in French, humanities, and French cinema at Burlington College. Having majored in French at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, he earned his M.A. and Ph. D. in French at the University of Wisconsin (Madison). These studies were interrupted by a year at France’s Université de Dijon as a Fulbright Teaching Fellow. Later, he spent a year as Director of UVM’s Vermont Overseas Study Program to the Université de Nice, and, back in Burlington, he was deeply involved in it for almost twenty years. At UVM, he taught French language, literature, culture courses; his research and publication interests generally focussed on nineteenth century literature. Beyond teaching and travels, Grant is a cinephlle; a Vice-President of The Caroline Baird Fund Crichfield Fund for Women in Need; and pursues his interest in cultural encounter and exchange as Board member of the Cuban American Friendship Society and volunteer translator for The Vermont Ibutwa Initiative, a charity that works with victims of war and sexual violence in eastern Democratic Republic of the Congo. Grant very much enjoys exploring books on various topics with the committed, interesting, and fun students in the Alliance Française literature courses.
Marc taught high school French for twenty years in both private and public settings before settling to teach exclusively at the Alliance. He was literally born into it, the son of two career-long French professors who raised him first speaking French in Burlington. After growing up in Vermont and in France, he earned his B.A. at U.V.M. in French and English, and went on to obtain his M.A. from Middlebury College in French Language. Highlights from his education included years abroad spent in Nice and Paris, first with U.V.M.’s Vermont Overseas Studies Program, and then later with Middlebury at the Université de Paris IX (Nanterre). His coursework in history, literature and art was especially inspiring and is what eventually pushed him toward teaching – that he might share with others the depth and diversity of France’s cultural heritage, including contributions from lesser-known French-speaking regions of the world. Today, while he still enjoys teaching the expressions and structures that are unique to the French language, he equally appreciates being able to offer new classes at the AFCLR that allow him to explore other areas: regional history, contemporary literature and popular culture. Marc currently heads the AFLCR and is delighted to live in a part of the world that places so much emphasis on French and French cultural heritage.
Born of a Scottish father and French-Canadian maman, Nikki grew up in the New York City area, got her BA in French from St. Lawrence University with a year spent at the Faculté de Rouen. She moved to Paris to tour with a group and stayed for almost 14 years! Before moving to Vermont from Paris, France in 2000, Nikki worked as a musician, backup vocalist, song adaptor, and translation editor. Her musical expeditions took her all over France, Europe and as far as Japan. Her bilingual life did not stop there though. She went on to get her Masters in Teaching French (MATSL) from Bennington College, and has taught in some of the elementary schools of the Mad River Valley, The Middlebury-Monterey Language Academy’s immersion program for high school students, and has taught at Norwich University where she now works. She has also added some ESL graduate work and teaching as well. Through a DoD grant, she also designed and taught French and Wolof to the Vermont Army National Guard who were being deployed to Senegal to participate in Vermont’s State Partnership Program. This led to her interpreting for President Sall of Senegal during his trip to Vermont in 2014. Nikki continues to do translation, interpretation work and consulting for TV and movie script adapters in France. She currently teaches for the Alliance Française in Montpelier and Burlington. If you are curious about her musical past, you can visit nikkimatheson.com.
Janet Whatley has had the pleasure of teaching the French language and French and Francophone literature for many years. She was on the Romance Languages faculty at UVM between 1973 and 2010, where she taught courses such as “Fables of Feminine Experience: Early French Women Writers;” “Power and Desire in French Classical Drama;” “Society Re-imagined: The Literature of the French Enlightenment; and “Joan of Arc in History, Image, and Legend.”
She undertook research in the early period of European contact with the Americas, which yielded a humanities course taught both at the first-year and at the graduate level: “The New World: Early Images and Encounters” (writings by Columbus, Cortez, Montaigne, Shakespeare, and others). This research also led to her translation of Jean de Léry’s classic work of early ethnography (1582), Histoire d’un Voyage en Terre de Brésil.
Her study of pre-Revolutionary women writers produced a translation, with Malcolm Whatley, of the correspondence of Isabelle de Charrière, a Dutch writer who wrote in French, and who is now recognized as a major voice in the European Enlightenment.
In recent years she has worked with a number of people from other countries needing help in developing their English skills in reading and writing. Under the auspices of the Alliance Française she has been leading a French literature reading group, exploring with her co-readers a wide range of subjects, such as Montaigne, Proust, Victor Hugo, the French experience of World War II. She is grateful to the Alliance for this opportunity.
Meet the Board of Directors
Aude Fiore, Director
Aude holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration with a Human Resources focus from Lyon 3 University in France. After four years working in France, mostly as a headhunter for a recruitment agency, she decided to give a new orientation to her career and moved to Canada to join the humanitarian sector. She spent seven years working with Action Contre la Faim (Action Against Hunger) and later Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors without Borders), fielding candidates in response to humanitarian crises in addition to other HR functions. She herself went to the field three times, in Kenya, South Sudan and the Philippines. In 2017, she moved to Burlington, VT, to join her husband. In August 2018, she started as a Staffing Manager for Tetra Tech, a leading consulting firm in international development. A food lover and avid traveler, Aude speaks native French, fluent English, and advanced Spanish.
The Alliance Française of Lake Champlain Region gave her access to the community when she moved to Burlington. She decided to join the Board to give back. She is thrilled to contribute to the efforts of sharing the French language and culture with the community. In 2018, she attended many events, baked for the Dessert Extravaganza event, helped organized lectures, a book club, and supported the reorganization of the administrative system.
She is looking forward to doing more in the future, including organizing cultural events and engaging more with the African communities. In addition to her motivation, she brings strong human resources, administrative, and organizational skills and some knowledge in IT.
Richard Gliech, Secretary
Richard Gliech was born and raised in France, where he obtained a higher education in materials engineering before moving to the United States in 1991 and starting a career in translation. He has been a certified member of the American Translators Association since 1998.
As a native francophone and bi-cultural expatriate residing in Burlington, Vermont, just south of the border with French-speaking Canada, Richard is uniquely qualified to transform English-language documents into French that is accurate, nuanced, and culturally relevant to your targeted reader. He employs the latest in computer-assisted translation tools to translate nearly any file type quickly, precisely, and cost-effectively.
Richard is a certified member of the American Translators Association, Corresponding Secretary and founding member of the Burlington-Honfleur Sister City Committee, and a member of both the Lake Champlain Regional Chamber of Commerce. In 2016, he started the Business Membership program at the Alliance Française of the Lake Champlain Region. Richard lives in Burlington with his wife, his daughter and his two sons, whom were raised bilingual.
Marc Juneau, President
Marc was raised speaking French in Burlington, Vermont, by his parents who were both native speakers and career-long university French professors. Marc eventually embraced teaching French himslef, given his life-long exposure to all things francophone and francophile. After earning a Masters Degree from Middlebury College, he went on to teach in both private boarding schools out of state and at public high school back home in South Burlington. Marc joined the Board in 2017, and currently tutors and teaches a variety of classes for the AFLCR. He hopes to bring his passion for the language and cultures which share it to as many people as he can. He strives to bring his love of the French language, art, history and philosophies to the Alliance School’s diverse course offerings. Marc also hopes to help the AFLCR continue to fulfill its other essential mission of promoting as many French, Quebecois and other francophone cultural opportunities in the region as possible. He specifically would like to promote support and outreach to the newly-arrived French speakers who count significantly in Burlington’s expanding immigrant population.
Marc currently lives in Colchester, from where he enjoys going off to New York, New Hampshire and points out west to pursue his passion for hiking, mountain biking and climbing. He also frequently returns to France to resource and reconnect himself with family.
Aileen Lachs, Treasurer
Aileen moved to Burlington in 1983, after graduating from Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. Before attending law school at Northeastern University School of Law in 1991, she worked as a freelance journalist and affordable housing advocate.
Since 1994 Aileen has worked as an attorney at the Burlington law firm of Mickenberg, Dunn, Lachs & Smith, PLC, providing legal assistance to individual and organizational clients of the firm in a wide range of practice areas. Her current primary areas of focus are family law/domestic relations and mediation with an emphasis on family law/domestic relations and residential foreclosures.
During the past thirty years, Aileen has worked with many different non-profit organizations in the State of Vermont. She has provided transactional and litigation counsel to large and small organizational clients focused on affordable housing, cultural exchanges, health care and transportation; served on the Boards of cultural and mediation related organizations; and been employed by non-profit organizations serving disadvantaged Vermonters. Aileen is also a member of many arts, environmental and bicycle non-profit organizations.
Aileen’s love of the French language blossomed during her Junior Year Abroad in Paris, France. She is grateful to have close friends in France and the United States with whom she speaks French regularly, and has had a number of French speaking clients over the years.
Aileen has been an active member of the Alliance Française and is honored to join the Board of Directors.
Suzanne Stimik, Director
Suzanne had the seeds of international interest planted early in life, having been raised in a first generation Eastern European family. As a high school student, she lived in Madagascar on an AFS exchange program. As an adult, she has welcomed numerous international visitors and exchange students, thereby broadening her son’s and family’s life.
Suzanne earned her Master’s in Education at the University of Vermont, and furthered her studies at the École des Beaux Arts in Paris. She taught art at South Burlington High School for twenty years, and also taught several courses at Community College of Vermont. Previous to her teaching career, she worked for a year as an art therapist in Jean Vanier Communité de L’Arche in Jarnac, France. Other professional experiences include being Program Director for the Vermont Humanities Council, as well as the Site Coordinator for the literacy mentoring program EW! Vermont at Edmunds Elementary School.
Since leaving teaching, Suzanne has run her own interior decorating business, Suzanne Stimik Interiors. She enjoys life in Vermont with all its outdoors activities, culinary and cultural events. She is also an avid traveler who frequently embarks on European visits. Suzanne joined the AFLCR Board in 2017. She is honored to be part of this organization that is working to include our increasingly diverse francophone communities.
Micheline Tremblay, Director & Directrice de l’École (French Language Center)
Micheline is a career-long French teacher from Québec originally, where she began teaching before establishing herself here for 30 years at Colchester Middle and High Schools. She inherited the direction of the French Language Center at the AFLCR in the early 2000s, and has since that time also become the “point person” for all inquiries coming into the Alliance, be they academic or not. During her tenure as Directrice, course offerings have expanded from two to five sessions per year, and from classrooms in Colchester only to include Burlington and Montpelier. The number of private tutoring sessions has also greatly increased in parallel. Micheline is actively involved in many AF projects including the Annual Gala Dinner fund-raiser and the Deuxième Samedi conversational gathering, not to mention her year-round efforts to coordinate a number of different classes and to ensure students are properly placed. It is her hope in the coming years to increase enrollment of younger students, and also to improve awareness of the depth and richness of Québécois and the culture it reflects.
Lise E. Veronneau, Director of Community Relations and International Affairs
Lise is involved in many French initiatives in Burlington, Vermont and Internationally. Her main objective is to identify opportunities to promote French connections. She looks for people with like energy and enthusiasm and a modern sense of business with organizational and leadership skills that will help the AF and AFLCR’s planning for the future. Lise has been with AFLCR since 2009, when she was recruited by the then-President to help. Having helped with the Quadcentennial and served as Events Committee Chair and Hospitality Director and then Board Director, she is pleased to promote the mission of AFLCR.
When not working on her volunteer projects, such as AFLCR, Lise enjoys overseeing Information & Technology and the Financial affairs of the Fire and Police Departments for the City of Burlington. In March 2012, Lise was asked by then-Mayor Bob Kiss to Chair the newly created Burlington-Honfleur Sister City Committee, the first with France and Honfleur, France’s first with the US. Honfleur is the port that Samuel de Champlain sailed from to New France. In 1609, Samuel de Champlain left Honfleur aboard the Don de Dieu to discover the lake that today bears his name. Lise is proud to hold a seat and position on the Board of Directors of the Alliance Française of the Lake Champlain Region. She was recently named Mme le Chevalier and be-knighted by France’s Ordre national de la Légion du Mérite for her tremendous volunteer efforts over the course of her career.
Bylaws, Alliance Française of the Lake Champlain Region: Click this link to view our organizational bylaws.