About Government Relations
John’s federal government service and role with Canada’s Technology Triangle equips him with insightful knowledge and varied experience at the Canadian federal, provincial and municipal levels of government.
As an official Canadian representative internationally, John was a frequent and effective advocate for Canadian interests – business, trade, economic, environmental – in numerous foreign countries.
Through three senior US assignments spanning 13 years, John developed a profound understanding of the US political system and how to mount effective advocacy and public policy initiatives in the US environment.
An outstanding example of this occurred during his assignment as Canada’s Consul General in Detroit when John led a major advocacy campaign to mitigate the potentially harmful effects for Canada of a major revision of the Michigan Single Business Tax. The eventual outcome saved Canadian business at least $100 million in taxes that might otherwise have been applied, according to Canada’s Automotive Parts Manufacturers’ Association. This was probably the most consequential state-level advocacy campaign that the Canadian Government has ever conducted in the United States.
John is also highly knowledgeable regarding Canada-US border issues. In his role as Consul General in Detroit, border issues were a significant focus even prior to September 11, 2001. However, this intensified immensely following the tragic events of 9/11. Following a year of intensive and productive bilateral negotiations and policy initiatives, John’s final day as Consul General was marked by a Border Summit in Detroit between President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Jean Chretien. To recognize John’s public service contribution, the Prime Minister hosted an event honouring him immediately following the Summit.