Their beginnings

BERNARD LEMAIRE

Date of birth: May 6, 1936

City: Drummondville

Family: Eldest of five children

LAURENT LEMAIRE

Date of birth: January 2, 1939

City: Drummondville

Family: Third of five children

ALAIN LEMAIRE

Date of birth: May 5, 1947

City: Drummondville

Family: Youngest of five children

The three Lemaire brothers (1950s)
Photo credit : Cascades archives

BORN ENTREPRENEURS

Bernard, Laurent and Alain Lemaire were born into a working-class family in Drummondville. Their father, Antonio Lemaire, was a self-made entrepreneur who salvaged scrap material well before recycling became commonplace. One aspect of his business involved selling used paper to some of the bigger paper mills in the area for the purpose of pulp production.

In 1957, Antonio Lemaire developed his own recipe for making pulp from recycled paper using the blender from the family kitchen. This would eventually lead to the creation of the Drummond Pulp & Fibre company.

The Lemaire family (1950s)
Photo credit : cascades Archives

Antonio Lemaire (1970s)
Photo credit : cascades Archives

Bernard, Laurent and Alain inherited their father’s ingenuity and his knack for breathing new life into under-performing assets. In 1964, Bernard and Laurent tapped into this resourcefulness to revive a disused paper mill and start their own paper manufacturing plant using recycled fibres. Thus was born Cascade Papier in Kingsey Falls. Alain eventually followed in his brothers’ footsteps and joined the company in 1967.

Dominion Paper Cie disused paper mill, Kingsey Falls (1964)
Photo credit : Cascades archives