05/23/2012 05:19 EDT | Updated 07/23/2012 05:12 EDT

Quebec's overachieving revolutionary: face of hardline student group gets award

MONTREAL - She may be among the most ardent rivals of the Quebec government and a prominent hardliner in the ongoing student strikes.

But Jeanne Reynolds has now received one of the province's most prestigious awards.

Reynolds, a co-spokesperson for the most militant group in the student conflict, is the recipient of a lieutenant-governor's medal because of her high marks and hundreds of hours of volunteer work.

The recognition was handed out last weekend — right after the provincial government passed an emergency law with severe penalties for student leaders encouraging unrest.

Reynolds' C.L.A.S.S.E. group has essentially ignored that law and encouraged thousands of people to break it, including in one march that saw scuffles between police and protesters last night.

The 20-year-old Valleyfield College arts student is the second-most recognizable member of that group, after fellow spokesman Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois. Ironically, Nadeau-Dubois has also been in the news for personal reasons as of late — because of a spat with his landlord over back rent.

Reynolds is refusing to provide interviews on her award.

Ever since the student conflict began, the group's spokespeople have been wary of discussing personal matters in public, saying they would rather focus on issues of politics, not personality.