Gisela is the President of Benchmark Benefits and mother of two.

After graduating from high school, Gisela started her career in insurance where she quickly learned that she could have an impactful and rewarding career working in group benefits. "You could face some good challenges, be a part of change, and be part of improvement," she said. After spending 12 years working for insurance companies, getting married and having her first child, Gisela decided to make the switch to consulting. "Not only could I continue to follow my passion in the industry, but I could also be home and be present for my daughter. In my view, I had the best of both worlds." She spent another 12 years working her way up to the role of Partner. Recently, Gisela and her husband, Adam, became the sole owners of Benchmark Benefits Solutions Inc.

Gisela has found many similarities between being a mother and being a business woman. "You're managing teams. You're managing your family and you're managing your business," she says. "Just like I want to make a difference in my organization, I want to make a difference in my children's lives." She believes it's important to talk to her children about her business and the challenges and sacrifices associated with it so they can learn from it.

Gisela also works to give back to her community personally and professionally. She volunteers and supports many non-profit organizations and is involved with her children's school. Her business also contributes to supporting communities by giving back one to two percent of Benchmark Benefits' revenues back to communities. What has motivated her to be a community leader? "Along the way there was always a helping hand, there was always a mentor, somebody that made a difference in my life, in my career and so it's all about full circle and giving back," she says.

Desjardins works closely with Gisela and Benchmark Benefits Solutions Inc. to insure, administer and manage group benefits programs.

Mother's Day Wishlist
  • Spending time with my family and enjoying the moment.
Gisela's Inspirational Women:
  • Gisela's mother - She brought her family to Canada from Peru. With three kids, she fought her way through change and always persevered and kept it positive.
  • Sheryl Sandberg - COO of Facebook
Key quotes:

"Don't be afraid. Go all the way, dream big and follow your passion. If you don't nobody else will do it for you."

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Media Relations, Desjardins