Leadership Team

Dr. France Desrosiers

President and CEO

Dr. Desrosiers has more than 22 years of medical and administrative experience, including many within her own private medical clinic in Tracadie. Dr. Desrosiers was born in Montréal. She holds a College Diploma in Health Sciences from the Collège de Maisonneuve, and a Doctor of Medicine from the Université de Montréal.

She is a member of the New Brunswick Medical Society, the College of Physicians and Surgeons of New Brunswick and the Canadian Society of Physician Leaders, and she is also a member and Fellow of the College of Family Physicians of Canada.

Dr. France Desrosiers

  • 2000 to 2004 – Head of Emergency services and Family medicine;
  • 2004 to 2008 – Department head for the Acadian Peninsula;
  • 2008 to 2009 – Chief Doctor, Acadie-Bathurst Zone;
  • 2009 to 2016 – Regional Chief of Staff for Vitalité Health Network.
  • 2016 to 2020 – Vice-President of Medical Services, Training and Research for Vitalité Health Network.


Patrick Parent

Assistant CEO, Strategic Execution, and Senior VP, Client Programs and Professional Services

Patrick Parent is a veteran of organizational transformation. Over the past 25 years, he has worked as a senior executive and a president and CEO within various public and private sector organizations and businesses. He now holds the positions of Assistant CEO, Strategic Execution, and Senior VP, Client Programs and Professional Services.

Mr. Parent, who has been supporting the Network in its journey towards continuous improvement for a few months already, says he is very happy to join the team. “Being part of such a passionate team is a great source of motivation for me. I will use my experience in management, strategic execution and talent development with pride and commitment to grow the Network.”


Rino Lang

Assistant Vice-President, Professional Services

Rino Lang has over 30 years of management experience in the fields of mental health and addiction services, home care and community health services (Extra-Mural Program), and emergency services in both rural and urban hospitals.

He was Director of Emergency Services at the Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont UHC, then Regional Director of the Extra-Mural Program and Regional Director of Adult Mental Health and Addiction Services. He is interested in innovation involving management models that promote the continuity of care in the community.


Brigitte Sonier-Ferguson

Senior Vice-President of Performance, University Mission and Strategies

Originally from Neguac, Brigitte Sonier-Ferguson earned a bachelor’s and a master’s in biochemistry from the Université de Moncton in 2001 and 2005, respectively. She also undertook doctoral studies in biochemistry/immunology at the University of Ottawa from 2005 to 2010.

Ms. Sonier-Ferguson joined Vitalité Health Network in 2010, more specifically, the Training and Research Sector, of which she has been the director since 2015. During this period, she was responsible for the development and review of the strategic plan for the Network’s university mission, which is one of the cornerstones of the Network’s new 2020–2023 Strategic Plan.

In addition to her duties within New Brunswick’s Francophone health authority, Ms. Sonier-Ferguson also sits on several boards of directors and national committees related to health research and various university partners.

She has received a number of awards in the course of her career, including “Le Prisme” as graduate of the year of the Faculty of Science of the Université de Moncton in 2018 and the Excellence in Management and Leadership Award of Vitalité Health Network in 2018.

Ms. Sonier-Ferguson is currently a doctoral candidate in Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of New Brunswick.


Sharon Smyth-Okana

Senior Vice-President of Client Programs and Nursing

Ms. Smyth-Okana has over 30 years of experience in clinical services management and nursing. She was Director of Surgical Services at the Dr. Georges-L.-Dumont UHC and then Regional Director of the Network’s Surgical Services (32 sectors) and Medical Device Reprocessing Departments for over a decade. She thus has an in-depth understanding of the issues facing the Network.

Over the course of her career, Ms. Smyth-Okana has been heavily involved in the integration and harmonization of clinical services and programs and in the modernization of Surgical Services and Medical Device Reprocessing Departments. Her new role will be dedicated to the management and harmonization of services and to tackling the Network’s current challenges in the areas of staffing and modernization of care.

Ms. Smyth-Okana holds a Bachelor of Science in Nursing and a Certificate in Health Ethics, Human Rights and Moral Philosophy from the Université de Moncton. She has also taken Lean training. She has received a number of awards, including the Award of Excellence for Patient Safety in 2013, the Award of Excellence for Patient Care: Preoperative Clinic Implementation in 2008 and the Award of Excellence for Nursing Management in 1999. She has also served as a member of the Discipline Committee of the Nurses Association of New Brunswick. She likes spending her free time with her family and doing outdoor activities.


Dr. Natalie Banville

Senior Vice-President of Client Programs and Medical Affairs

A native of Quebec’s North Shore, Dr. Banville graduated in medicine from Université Laval in 1993. Five years later, she completed a specialization in anesthesia-resuscitation at that same university.

She launched her career in 1998 as an anesthesiologist at the Chaleur Regional Hospital (Bathurst). Since then, she has held various leadership positions within the Network, including Chair of the Credentials Committee, Department Head of the Anesthesia Unit and a medical director of the organization. She also served on the Network’s first Regional Medical Advisory Committee (RMAC) from 2019 to 2012.

In her free time, Dr. Banville jogs, does bike tours and plays golf.


Dr. Anick Pelletier

Assistant Vice-President, Medical Affairs

A graduate of the Université de Sherbrooke, Dr. Anick Pelletier now holds the position of Assistant Vice-President, Medical Affairs. A family physician in Caraquet for the past 15 years, she has held the position of Regional Medical Director (internal medicine and intensive care, pediatrics, oncology, palliative care, public health and coordinator for the Restigouche Zone) since 2018. She was also President of the Board of Directors of the New Brunswick College of Family Physicians from 2012 to 2014, a member of the Board of Directors of the College of Family Phsyicians of Canada from 2011 to 2015, department head at Enfant-Jésus RHSJ† Hospital in Caraquet, and head of the family medicine department of the Acadian Peninsula.

Her practice on the ground helps her clearly understand the issues and challenges in health care. She wants to help improve services by aligning medical practices and the strategic approach of the Network.


Stéphane Legacy

Senior Vice-President of General Services

Stéphane Legacy has held management positions within the New Brunswick health care system for over 17 years. Starting in 1996, he held successive positions with the ACADIE-BATHURST Health Authority as Manager of Accounting, Director of Financial Services and Material Management, and Vice-President, Hospital Services. In 2007, Mr. Legacy was appointed Acting Executive Director of the ACADIE-BATHURST Health Authority and he remained in this position until 2008. He went on to become Vice-President of Professional and Diagnostic Services for Vitalité Health Network and then Executive Vice-President and Chief of Operations for the Network.

In addition to his duties as Chief Operating Officer of the Acadie-Bathurst Zone, Mr. Legacy is in charge of the following regional files: Diagnostic and Therapeutic Services and Information Systems (FacilicorpNB).

After completing studies in business technology at the New Brunswick Community College - Bathurst Campus, Mr. Legacy continued his postsecondary training at the Université de Moncton where he earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in 1994 and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) in 2007.


Ghislaine Arsenault

Vice-President of Communications and Engagement

Ghislaine was Director of Strategic Relations for the District scolaire francophone Sud and communications officer with the Université de Moncton for a number of years. 

In addition to serving as a member of the national jury for the Prix d’excellence de la presse francophone of the Association de la presse francophone, Ghislaine has developed a number of very successful communication campaigns.  She began her career at Radio-Canada Acadie where she spent five years in the newsroom as a host and announcer on both radio and television.


Frederic Finn

Vice-President of Employee Experience

Over the past six years, Frederic has served as Chief Human Resources Officer in the Department of Finance and Treasury Board.  Prior to that, Frederic was Assistant Deputy Minister for over a decade. He brings human resources expertise combined with strong innovation and critical thinking skills.