Career Profile - Environmental and Public Affairs Manager

Dawn Fraser

It took a Linguistics degree and several years teaching English in Asia before Dawn Fraser decided to change course and pursue her true passion working with environmental issues. 

“Despite being interested in the environmental field from a young age – my first science fair project in elementary school was on the disappearing rainforests – I didn’t decide to pursue it as a career until after travelling in Asia,” said Fraser. Soon after her trip, she graduated from the University of Winnipeg with a second degree in Environmental Studies.

Fraser is the Environmental and Public Affairs Manager for Manitoba, Saskatchewan, and northwest United States at Lafarge, an international construction supplies company.

Her primary duties include ensuring environmental compliance through audits, procedure reviews and providing environmental training for all of Lafarge’s product lines in the geographical area she manages.

“Nothing is really typical or average in an environmental career which is what I love about it,” said Fraser. “One day I will be auditing one of our facilities and the next, I’ll be writing reports and entering data – no day is the same.”

Highlights of her career thus far include sitting on a national industry sustainability committee to help shape a monitoring program that is now influencing the industry in North America. Fraser admits that it can take time to figure out where one’s passions lie, but advises students to explore their interests.

“Volunteer in areas you are interested in. The experience will give you a taste of whether it is the right fit for you.”

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