Gar Pardy, Distinguished Canadian Diplomat (Retired)

EVENT DATE: May 13, 2021 (via Zoom)
TOPIC: The Global Ascendancy of China

Gar Pardy, a distinguished Canadian diplomat, now retired, joined the Canadian Foreign Service in 1967.

He served in India, Kenya, the United States and Central America where he was Ambassador to Costa Rica, El Salvador, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama. In the late 1980s he was Director of the Asia Pacific Division in Foreign Affairs, and he retired as director general of the consular affairs bureau in 2003. However, he has maintained a strong presence in the department.

Since his retirement in 2003, he has been a commentator and writer on issues of Canadian foreign and public policy. He appears regularly in the Ottawa Citizen and Embassy newspapers and on CBC, CTV and Global television. He has spoken out on numerous issues related to the consular support or lack thereof for Canadian citizens abroad. He has in various ways advocated for Omar Khadr, and was instrumental in getting consular support for Maher Arar. He has spoken out about the ongoing imprisonment in China of Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor. In March, 2016, the Rideau Institute published a report Pardy wrote, on the erosion in Canada’s provision of consular services to its citizens living in foreign countries.

He hails from Newfoundland and his early education was in Norris Arm and Gander. He first worked for the Meteorological Service of Canada – in Gander, Goose Bay and Frobisher Bay. He has an honours degree from Acadia University and a Master’s from McMaster. He and his wife Laurel live in Ottawa.