Speaker Profile

Dr. Leonard J. Edwards

Dr. Leonard J. Edwards

Strategic adviser at Gowling Lafleur Henderson LLP, and a distinguished fellow of the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada

Mr. Edwards retired in 2010 after 41 years in the Canadian Public Service. He was Canada’s G-8 and G-20 Sherpa from 2008 to 2010, under former Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and led the preparations for the G-8 and G-20 Summits in Canada in 2010. He served as Canada’s Deputy Foreign Minister from 2007 to 2010, and prior to that held the positions of Deputy Minister or Agriculture and Deputy Minister of International Trade. Mr. Edwards has been Canada’s Ambassador to both Japan and to the Republic of Korea. His Foreign Service career also included assignments to Vietnam, Turkey, Brussels (NATO), and to the United Nations Organizations in Geneva. He has also been Assistant Deputy Minister for Economic and Trade Policy and for Asia Pacific Affairs. As Canada’s APEC Senior Official, he attended the APEC Bogor Summit in 1994 and led preparations for the 1997 APEC Summit in Vancouver.

Among his activities since retirement, Mr. Edwards is a Distinguished Fellow at both the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) in Waterloo, Canada, and the Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada based in Vancouver. He is a recipient of the Meritorious Service Medal of Canada, and Japan’s Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star.

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