At the time, the commerce faculty at Loyola College was a small community with only a handful of people. “Now we have a 15-storey building just for the business school,” she says.
A marketing professor at the John Molson School of Business (JMSB), de Brentani has taught at the undergraduate, master and PhD levels. She was appointed associate dean of research at JMSB in the 1990s, and was responsible for directing the PhD and Master of Science programs and developing the research policy for the faculty.
After her own successes with research and grants in the field of new product innovation and marketing, de Brentani became an important resource on campus for other professors. She regularly ran workshops on how to create effective proposals.
“I still encourage my colleagues today, especially junior professors who are applying for the first time, to give me their grant applications and let me look them over,” says de Brentani. She stresses that it is essential for tenure-track professors to succeed in research so that they are in a position to take on a variety of functions at different stages in their career.
From 2005 to 2009, she again took on the role of Director of MSc and PhD and was instrumental in the re-development of the Master of Science program. She also initiated and co-ordinated the Annual Graduate Research Exposition, where MSc and PhD students present their research to the academic and business community. This has become an important annual event at JMSB.
“I suppose if I had to say what I liked most about my career at Concordia it would be that at different stages of my life depending on my interests and also on my capabilities I was able to do very different things, whether it be teaching, research or administration,” says de Brentani.
“In a lot of other scenarios you don't really get the opportunity to drop something and pick up something else, and that's one thing that was really great at Concordia.”
Beyond her many academic accomplishments, de Brentani has also served as a source of strength for her female colleagues at the university.
De Brentani headed monthly women’s caucus meetings to connect female colleagues across campus. She also became involved in the fight for pay equity in the ’90s. She was, and still is, a support resource for any co-worker in need.
“I feel very good that I was able to help some of my colleagues, even outside of the faculty. They need to know there's someone there to support them when they need it.”
Through her many years of service, de Brentani has established a legacy of capability, intellectuality and resolve.
Agostino Borsellino: committed custodian
Custodial Services, Facilities Management
25 years at Concordia
Agostino Borsellino remembers quite clearly the year he began his career at Concordia. It was 1990. He had recently married and he had a baby on the way.