Anouk joined the 3rd Field Engineer Regiment in Westmount in 2000, serving as a Combat Engineer.

Anouk deployed to Bosnia in 2002 with 5th Engineer Regiment, where she was the victim of a jeep accident while on a mission.

She then joined an Information Operation unit based on CFB Longue Pointe in 2004, where she served as a PSYOPS Analyst until 2009.

Anouk also deployed as a PSYSOP analyst in Afghanistan in 2007-2008, where she patrolled the province of Kandahar to meet the local population on the “Hearts and Minds” campaign. She retired from the CAF as a Sergeant in 2010.

During her military career, Anouk also completed a bachelor’s degree in public communication from Laval University and a master’s degree in international studies from University of Montreal.

After her time in the CAF, Anouk was employed as a humanitarian worker for various organizations in many countries affected by war and natural disasters. She worked for the United Nations, Development Alternative Inc, the Canadian Red Cross, the IFRC and other non-profits in the Caribbean, Africa, and the Asia-Pacific region.

Anouk’s humanitarian career came to an end in 2016, following a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder linked to her mission in Afghanistan. That same year, Anouk participated in an expedition to Antarctica with True Patriot Love to raise funds for ill and injured Veterans transitioning to civilian life.

Anouk is now a manager in corporate security and lives in Ottawa with her husband and two children.

What memory from your expedition stands out for you?

The camaraderie at the end of the expedition was just like in the military after a long and hard exercise or course in the field.

What advice would you give someone embarking on their first expedition?

Be open minded. A lot of people want to reconnect with their abilities but for me, this experience actually helped me decelerate and realize I don’t need to be a hero.

What did you learn about yourself while training and then trekking?

I hate winter, LOL!

How does your life look different now than it did before you went on your expedition?

My life completely changed. By failing the summit, I realised that it was ok to “fail” and not be a hero or be like the boys all the time. I was also introduced to higher management at a major Canadian financial institution by two different civilian members and have been working there since.

What did you learn from the civilian mentor(s)?

Networking is REALLY important. I gained more understanding of the corporate world and networking which we don’t know in the military necessarily. It was also the first time in my life that I realized that people had respect for us, for what we did.

What do you think they learned from you?

Resilience, camaraderie and friendship while in a stressful experience.

What did your expedition mean to you?

It was a life-changer. Maybe it’s the opposite for a lot of people but for me, going there then not reaching the top, and realizing my limits was so important. To be able to sit down and say, “Hey, you don’t need to be the best all the time, right?”