Diplomatic Appointments

August 23, 2013 - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today announced the following diplomatic appointments:

Shawn Barber becomes High Commissioner in the Republic of Mozambique.

Perry Calderwood becomes High Commissioner in the Federal Republic of Nigeria and Permanent Observer to the Economic Community of West African States, with concurrent accreditation as Ambassador to the Democratic Republic of Sao Tome and Principe and the Republic of Equatorial Guinea.

Marie Gervais-Vidricaire becomes Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany.

Otto Jelinek becomes Ambassador to the Czech Republic.

John R. Kur becomes Ambassador to the Russian Federation, with concurrent accreditation to the Republic of Armenia.

Joanne Lemay becomes Ambassador to Romania, with concurrent accreditation to the Republic of Bulgaria.

Wayne Robson becomes Consul General in Ho Chi Minh City.

Biographical notes on the appointees follow.

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Biographical Notes

Shawn Barber (BA [Economics], McGill University, 1982; MBA, University of Ottawa, 2006) joined External Affairs and International Trade Canada in 1989. In Ottawa, he has held assignments in several divisions, including Resource and Commodity Trade Policy, Environment, Non-Proliferation and Arms Control, European Union, and Middle East Relations. Mr. Barber was also deputy director for U.S. relations; director of the Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force—during which time, in 2008, he served as acting political director of the Provincial Reconstruction Team in Kandahar, Afghanistan—and director of parliamentary affairs in the Corporate Secretariat. Mr. Barber has served abroad in Harare, Tel Aviv and Pristina, Kosovo, where he was head of the Canadian Office from 1999 to 2003. Most recently, Mr. Barber was director of the Global Partnership Program. He is married to Valerie Percival, and they have two sons, Owen and Theo. Mr. Barber replaces Alain Latulippe.

Perry Calderwood (BA Honours [Soviet and East European Studies], Carleton University, 1983; MA [International Affairs], Carleton University, 1986; ARCT, Royal Conservatory of Music of the University of Toronto) joined the Department of External Affairs in 1986. In Ottawa, Mr. Calderwood has held assignments as a desk officer covering South America relations and UN nuclear affairs. Later, he served as deputy director of the UN and Commonwealth Affairs Division and as director of the Eastern and Southern Africa Division. He was also the deputy to the prime minister’s personal representative for Africa. Abroad, Mr. Calderwood has served in New York City, Bogotá, Moscow, Buenos Aires and Pretoria. He also served as ambassador to Venezuela from 2007 to 2010. Most recently, Mr. Calderwood was ambassador to Senegal, with concurrent accreditation to Cape Verde, Guinea-Bissau, Guinea and the Gambia. Mr. Calderwood replaces Chris Cooter.

Marie Gervais-Vidricaire (BA [Journalism and German], Laval University, 1976; MA [International Relations], Paris Institute of Political Studies, 1978; Diploma of Advanced Studies [Political Sociology], School of Advanced Studies in Social Science, Paris, 1979), joined the Department of External Affairs in 1980. She has served as an assignment officer in Human Resources, as director of the Cabinet Liaison Division, director of the Southern Europe Division, and as director general of global affairs. Ms. Gervais-Vidricaire has also twice served, from 1989 to 1991 and from 1994 to 1995, in the Privy Council Office. In 2009, Ms. Gervais-Vidricaire was selected by NATO’s Secretary General to serve as a member of a group of experts charged with making recommendations for the new strategic concept of NATO, which was adopted in 2010. Abroad, Ms. Gervais-Vidricaire has served in New York City, Mexico City, Bogotá, Paris and Geneva, Switzerland. From 2005 to 2009, she was the ambassador to Austria and to international organizations in Vienna. Most recently, Ms. Gervais-Vidricaire was director general of the Stabilization and Reconstruction Task Force. Ms. Gervais-Vidricaire replaces Peter Boehm.

Otto Jelinek has had a rich and diverse career, enjoying great success as a professional athlete, business owner and politician. Mr. Jelinek was a successful pairs figure skater with his sister Maria, winning the 1962 world championship, among many other competitions. He is a member of Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame. After retiring from figure skating, Mr. Jelinek made a smooth transition to the private sector, where he founded and successfully operated Canadian Skate Industries until his election to Parliament in 1972, when he ran for the Progressive Conservative Party. He was elected as the member of Parliament for High Park-Humber Valley and was re-elected five times. In 1984, he was appointed minister of state for fitness and amateur sport and later minister responsible for multiculturalism. In 1988, he was appointed Minister of Supply and Services. From 1989 to 1993, he served as the Minister of National Revenue. He retired from politics in the fall of 1993 to re-enter the private sector. In 1996, Mr. Jelinek moved to the Czech Republic, where he became chairman of Deloitte Czech Republic, then in 2002 became chairman of Deloitte Central Europe. He remained with Deloitte until 2006. From 2007 to 2011, he was chairman of Colliers International. In 2012, the Jelineks returned to their home town of Oakville, Ontario, where Mr. Jelinek continues to operate as an independent consultant. He is married to Leata Mary, and they have two grown sons, Misha and Jamie. Mr. Jelinek replaces Valerie Raymond.

John R. Kur (BAdm, University of Ottawa, 1992; Certificate [International Economics], London School of Economics and Political Science, 1995; MSc [Finance], London Business School, 1999) has served abroad at the Canadian embassies in Berlin, Moscow and Washington, D.C., and in the office of the executive director for Canada at the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development in London. Mr. Kur has also held a variety of positions in Ottawa, including in the offices of the deputy prime minister and minister of finance, at Export Development Corporation and at Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada, where most recently he was director general of the Europe and Eurasia Bureau. Mr. Kur replaces John Sloan.

Joanne Lemay (LLB, University of Montréal, 1992; Quebec Bar, 1993; MA [International Relations], Budapest University of Economic Sciences, 1994) served as a customs officer and as an immigration officer in Dorval and Philipsburg, Quebec, respectively, before graduating from law school. Ms. Lemay then worked in the private sector, first as an articling lawyer and subsequently as director of administration for a paramedical services firm in Montréal. In 1997, she returned to the public service and joined the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, undertaking various assignments at Headquarters and abroad. In Ottawa, she served as trade commissioner in the Central Europe Division and as deputy director of the Trade Commissioner Service Renewal Division. Ms. Lemay served abroad in Kuwait City, Warsaw and Guadalajara, Mexico, where she headed the consulate. Most recently, Ms. Lemay was consul and senior trade commissioner in Chicago. Ms. Lemay replaces Philippe Beaulne.

Wayne Robson (BA, University of British Columbia, 1989; MComLaw, Deakin University, 2013) joined External Affairs and International Trade Canada in 1991. In Canada, Mr. Robson has held a number of positions, including regional director of the Vancouver regional office responsible for the Pacific region and director of the International Trade Finance Division in Ottawa. He has also served abroad as second secretary in Tokyo, first secretary in Canberra, and minister-counsellor and senior trade commissioner in Seoul. Most recently, Mr. Robson was minister-counsellor and senior trade commissioner at the Canadian embassy in Mexico. He is married to Monica Robson, and they have a son and two daughters. Mr. Robson replaces Audri Mukhopadhyay.