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In my previous career, I have spent 11 years in the French judiciary first as a prosecutor, then as a judge in civil court and finally as a judge overseeing detention and probation.
I’ve always been passionate about social justice, equity and respect. Respect is a cornerstone in the work of a magistrate. I believe that I cannot garner respect if I don’t offer it to those in front of me. How can we expect people to grow if we judge them for who they are? The judicial decision is only a judgement about what they have done.
I’m also a musician when I decide to take the time. I play the harp.
My Experience as a civil judge
As a civil judge for guardianship, my role was to protect people who could not look after their interests because of illness or old age. I met the protected persons and their families, often in difficult situations. I saw conflicts, frustration, anger, but also love and attachment. I had to guide the legal guardian in assessing the protected person’s interests for all major life decisions (selling the family house,..). When a person loses his or her basic freedoms such as controlling his or her finances, family feuds can make things worse. There is only one way forward: confront the situation, ask the right questions, listen with compassion and then make a decision. Even in difficult life situations, there are choices, although difficult ones.
My experience as a criminal judge
As a criminal judge for sentenced people, I had to supervise people on probation on alternative detention programs (electronic bracelets, work/prison schedules,…) and to decide whether or not an inmate may be granted an early release. This happens after sentencing which helped a lot in opening up the conversations. The past is whatever it is, making excuses or minimizing what happened is not useful anymore. The focus is on the future. Of course many of the inmates I worked with felt ensnared in a circle of delinquency. And yet, I have seen most of them reach a point in their life where they decide to change course. It often comes with maturity, sometimes with the help of a newfound partner. They look back and start asking themselves the right questions. Is this how I want to live? Is this who I am? And then they decide to take a different path. Working with them through these difficult human situations made me realize how powerful individual choices are.
Moving to the US
Respect and Confidentiality are at the core of a coaching relationship. They guarantee a safe space for you to grow. I believe in listening and compassion but also authenticity and joy. And above all I believe in everyone’s right to be ourselves. We all have a place in this world, we all have the power to make a difference in our own life, even though the circumstances are sometimes challenging. We cannot change the circumstances but we can choose how we respond to them. We all have this infinite power.