In the service of Canada around the world
Hello, welcome to my personal website. This site is a work in progress, but it is meant to be a travel and professional diary of notable events in my diplomatic career. I can thank the 2020 pandemic for inspiring me to learn how to design and build a website.
Please check out my Current Affairs blog for recent writings, and I hope the links on my research page will help you learn more about the Middle East. I've also created a page of resources on anti-racism and diversity issues in recognition of the global impact of the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
As a diplomat, I have worked side-by-side with Canadian soldiers and first responders, and I have great respect for their sacrifice and service; please consider supporting Wounded Warriors Canada, a fantastic grassroots organization formed to support the mental health of Canadian Armed Forces Members, Veterans, First Responders, and their families.
As someone who has worked in challenging and hostile environments, I know how complicated conflicts can become. Through training and experience, we develop the understanding and empathy to support conflict resolution.
This, however, can be cold comfort to victims of injustice. And it is essential to remember and honour those who have made sacrifices or died in service.
Please read about my friend and colleague's unjust and unlawful detention, Michael Kovrig. Michael was detained by the government of China on December 10, 2018. 1019 days later, on September 24, 2021, Michael was released.
Consider donating to the Annemarie Desloges Scholarship Fund at the University of Ottawa. Annemarie, a Canadian diplomat, was tragically killed in the 2013 terrorist attack on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya.
The Glyn Berry Memorial Scholarship was established for Glyn Berry at Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia. Glyn was a Canadian diplomat killed in a car bomb attack in Afghanistan on January 15, 2006. Two other civilians were killed in the incident, and ten people were wounded, including three Canadian soldiers, MCpl. Paul Franklin, Pte. William Edward Salikin and Cpl. Jeffrey Bailey.
Remembering Hisham Al Hashimi
On August 15, 2020, the friends and family of renown Iraqi academic and government adviser Hisham Al Hashimi commemorate the 40th day (Arba'een) since his death on July 6, 2020. Hisham was a good friend to the diplomatic community and generous with his time. He shared his knowledge and was a prolific writer and researcher. Hisham was assassinated in front of his home, his death was felt personally by everyone who knew him. Following his death, I commissioned my father Dave Gordon to paint a portrait of Hisham to remember him. Read more here.
Portrait painting by Dave Gordon of Michael Kovrig, Senior Advisor to the International Crisis Group, and Canadian Foreign Service officer. He was detained by the Chinese government on December 10, 2018, while on unpaid leave from the government of Canada. Michael is a friend and colleague of mine and I hope for his return. #Bringhimhome, #FreeMichaelKovrig
Note: Michael Kovrig was released after 1019 days of detention on September 24, 2021.
Donate to the Annemarie Desloges Scholarship
Please consider financially supporting a scholarship fund in memory of Annemarie Desloges at the University of Ottawa established by her family. Annmarie was a Canadian diplomat killed on September 21, 2013, during a terrorist attack on the Westgate Mall in Nairobi, Kenya.
Support and donate to Wounded Warriors Canada a group formed to support Canada’s ill and injured Canadian Armed Forces Members, Veterans, First Responders and their families.
In June 2018, I had the honour of riding 600 km with 100 veterans and their friends and family members through the former Yugoslavia to raise money for the survivors of post-traumatic stress. Thanks to the many people who donated money to the Embassy of Canada to Croatia's team participating on the ride.
On May 25, 2020, George Floyd, a 46-year-old black man, was killed in Minneapolis, Minnesota, during an arrest for allegedly using a counterfeit bill.
The killing drew an international spotlight on the issue of anti-black racism. It is incumbent on everyone to reflect on systemic discrimination and how we all can contribute to a better, more inclusive tomorrow. Please visit my anti-racism and diversity resource page.