Isabelle Estebe, Chevalier in the National Order of Merit
A resident of Charlotte for eight years, Isabelle Estebe is currently Business Development Director for Dassault Systèmes, leader in product life management (PLM) and innovation in software editing. Originally from the region of Chablis. Isabelle Estebe fell in love with North Carolina, “ the weather is beautiful, mild and the inhabitants are very warm.” Destined to stay only three years in Charlotte, she no longer wanted to leave. Second place only to New York as a financial center, the Queen City is indeed one of the key cities of the American southeast.
In her early childhood, she began dreaming about discovering unknown planets. At the age of 10, she knew all the constellations by heart and spent hours building paper rockets. “Neil Armstrong was my idol, and I planned to name my son after this famous cosmonaut. The result, “I had two daughters!” says Isabelle. During her studies, she decided to be a pilot. As the Ecole Nationale de l’Aviation Civile did not pêrmit women at this time, she entered the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Mécanique et Aérotechnique, following in the scientific tradition of her family. However, she did not give up her dream and obtained her pilot’s licence at the air base in Tours. With an air of nostalgia, Isabelle remembers spending hours doing laps around the airstrip, “ I was piloting my little DR400 among the Alpha Jets that were training there.” In order to complete her education, she moved to Paris and entered the Ecole Nationale Supérieure des Techniques Avancées.
Continuing the path of her studies, Isabelle started her professional career in the field of robotics. After having have worked for the company Nastran, a specialist in digital simulation, she began working for Dassault Systèmes where she has worn many different hats. In 1996, she was appointed Technical Assistant to Dassault Systèmes’ President, Bernard Charlès. For two years, she oversaw and managed communication for the company’s key acquisitions. In 2000, she relocated to Charlotte as Communications Manager for Enovia. As Business Development Director of Dassault Systèmes, she works in close collaboration with large-scale companies in order to reinforce their presence and image in the U.S.
Included in her numerous activities, she is President of the French-American Chamber of Commerce of North Carolina and sits on the board of the Dallas/Fort Worth Chapter. She is also a Board Member of the European-American Business Forum of Charlotte and participates in Women Executives of Charlotte. Additionally, she is Vice-President of the Southeast section of the French Foreign Trade Advisors. On April 21, 2008, she received the title of Chevalier in the National Order of Merit, by His Excellency Mr. Pierre Vimont, Ambassador of France to the U.S.