He Gives Peace A Chance


“What happened happened, it was the 70s.”

“Sometimes we stay angry for way too long. The healing comes when you forgive and let go, and realize that everybody has had a tough life.”

“The peace work, believe it or not, is not always very peaceful.”


Jean Trudel is the founder of Circle of Peace (cercledepaix.org).

An UNcommon Journey

He has served on U.N. Committees such as the NGO committee on the rights of indigenous people and the committee for the International day of yoga. Before joining the non-profit sector, he was a producer, having founded the production company Melodeum, and created shows for the likes of Sarah McLaughlin, Amanda Marshall, and Celine Dion.

Our time in the studio with Jean was filled with amazing stories. From a planned two-month trip to France in the early 70s that turned into 10 years (and four kids!), to documentary filmmaking and organizing a welcoming committee for the Dalai Lama.

No Profit? No Problem.

He was candid in sharing both high points and major challenges he faced. Some of the highlights include the very competitive nature of running a non-profit organization and the hustle required when you want to break through in the entertainment industry.

Jean Trudel on The SpiritBros Podcast!


  • [3:25] #lifeofaretiree. What it means for Jean to be retired after a life of work and free-spirited adventure.

  • [4:35] What is the secret to preparing properly for retirement? For Jean, a key aspect was a Vipassana retreat.

  • [7:30] On being a grandparent and the effect his years of travel had on his kids.

  • [8:20] “Sometimes we stay angry for way too long. The healing comes when you forgive and let go, and realize that everybody has had a tough life.”

  • [9:20] On a lifetime interest for indigenous culture.

  • [12:30] How did Jean get started in production and filmmaking?

  • [13:30] “I just wanted to be part of that. Not the spectacle aspect, but the passing on that emotion, that feeling of sharing […] the whole spirit behind it.”

  • [15:45] “I ended up in Europe in 1971. I was supposed to go only for two months. I came back 10 years later with four kids.”

  • [16:45] On become a ‘secretaire d’artiste’: hiring musicians, organizing a tour, etc.

  • [20:45] On his biggest failure early in his career.

  • [23:15] On his nuclear, European family life.

  • [25:45] “What happened happened, it was the 70s.”

  • [34:25] What Jean loves about being a producer. “You have to find that perfect space, where you can serve your ‘better angels,’ so to speak.”

  • [38:25] Jean’s first production under his own banner required all of his social and technical skill to get off the ground.

  • [47:45] On working with Celine Dion.

  • [52:15] On what it took to bring together a production team under a strict deadline.

  • [56:15] On founding his production company, Melodeum.

  • [58:45] On having to make the tough call of walking away from the production industry.

  • [1:00:15] On how deciding to film a documentary created an opportunity for a whole new career calling.

  • [1:02:45] On founding “Circle Of Peace” and beginning to work in the non-profit sector.

  • [1:04:05] “The peace work, believe it or not, is not always very peaceful.” On competition in the NGO sector.

  • [1:05:45] On creating a welcoming committee for His Holiness the Dalai Lama during a visit to Montreal.

  • [1:08:45] On the circle of life and the four directions of the First Nations.

  • [1:12:45] On the mission of Circle of Peace.

  • [1:23:25] Jean’s insight into working on U.N. Committees that aim to aid Indigenous populations.

  • [1:28:30] What does peace mean for Jean? How has his perspective of it shifted since founding Circle of Peace in 2004?

  • [1:31:15] The seventeen U.N. Sustainable Development goals.

  • [1:35:45] On growing the International Day of Peace Facebook and taking it from 45,000 followers in 2013 to 320,000 in 2018.

  • [1:38:15] Jean’s current definition of peace.

  • [1:41:55] “We are at that time where the choice is a must.”

  • [1:49:15] Jean’s daily health routine.

  • [1:55:15] Where is Peace Day today? “I’m looking to pass it on.”

  • [2:01:05] “I am so energized by what I see in the upcoming generation.”

  • [2:05:05] What is Jean’s dream or vision for 10 years from now?

  • [2:11:05] En-Lightning Round.

2 comments on Episode 26: Jean Trudel

  1. Hey this is Élodie from T’auras du Lolo!
    Thank you for the shout out! the link is wrong tho, this is the right address for our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/taurasdulolo/
    We also have a website where people can order and find out more about us:
    Have a nice day!

    1. Peter Lavoie says:

      Thanks Élodie! The link should be fixed now!

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