Franchisee, Sainte-Adèle and Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts
Behind every St-Hubert franchise lies a typical family with a history of their own. In Sainte-Adele and Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts, that family is Michel Rochon’s. Coming from a humble family himself, the franchisee started his business with the goal of giving back to others.
“I was barely 19 years old when I started telling my friends that I was going to have my own St-Hubert one day."
For Michel Rochon, everyone should have the right to dream, even those who think they cannot afford it. This is the message he shares with young people he comes across. “My journey has not always been easy. If that can convince people that it's possible for them to do whatever they want and to believe in their dreams, well - that’s something."
At 16, Michel wanted to work for St-Hubert so bad that he hitchhiked from Sainte-Adele to Saint-Jerome for every shift. Less than 10 years after he started working at St-Hubert, on May 11, 1987 to be more precise, Michel became the franchisee of the Sainte-Adele rotisserie. Today, Laurentian residents have given him the friendly nickname, "Monsieur St-Hubert."
The pass that’s needed to score
"In January 1987, Hélène Léger, co-founder of Rôtisseries St-Hubert, offered to buy the St-Hubert in Sainte-Adèle, telling me she would help me. That’s what she did."
Michel couldn't afford a St-Hubert franchise, but that never stopped him from owning up to four. Michel will always be grateful to Hélène and René Léger who helped him buy his first franchise. Being a great fan of hockey, the franchisee compares this help to an important pass that allowed him to score several goals.
“A hockey player who’s with the same team for 20 years - that’s considered an achievement. I've been with St-Hubert for 42 years."
Michel also had a custom ring made, which he wears on the ring finger of his right hand, on which the St-Hubert rooster comb is visible. “That ring is like my Stanley Cup. I never take it off because it reminds me every day how proud I am of how far I have come."
“Anyone involved in a foundation knows that there is always work to do. On the other hand, I think that our foundation is solid and that it has greatly given back to Quebecers since 2012."
For 22 years now, Michel has also been Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Fondation Médicale des Laurentides et des Pays-d'en-Haut, whose mission is to improve and support the health and well-being of the population of the region through the acquisition and modernization of medical equipment.
How would you describe the great St-Hubert family?
"Being part of a banner like St-Hubert is a bit like having a big family with people all across the province of Quebec," explains Michel.
Michel has always been very close to his employees. He remembers the many exchanges he’s had with them during lunchtime or happy hour, or in their common space during breaks.
“Later on, when I'll be sitting in my rocking chair, I'll be thinking about all the beautiful times I had with my people and they will make me smile again and again."