ABOVE: Prime Minister Stephen Harper formally introduced Elizabeth Dowdeswell as the next Lieutenant Governor of Ontario Thursday
OTTAWA – Elizabeth Dowdeswell, a former undersecretary general of the United Nations with a long public service career, has been named Ontario’s new lieutenant-governor.
Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced the appointment Thursday, praising Dowdeswell’s “wealth of expertise” and her work promoting sustainable development in Ontario and across the country.
“She has been a senior public servant, worked in government, worked in international organizations and non-governmental organizations, business and also most recently, academically focused organizations,” Harper said as he introduced the new lieutenant-governor.
“So she brings a lot of public-service experience to the job, and we’re delighted that, Liz, that you’ve accepted to do this on behalf of the Crown, on behalf of the people of Ontario.”
Dowdeswell replaces David Onley, who held the position for seven years.
She is currently the president and CEO of the Council of Canadian Academies and prior to that was the founding president and CEO of the Nuclear Waste Management Organization.
In addition to serving as the UN undersecretary general, Dowdeswell has also been the executive director of the UN Environment Program and executive director of UN-Habitat.
Dowdeswell has been actively involved in community service aimed at promoting a “healthy environment, sustainable energy and development and a better quality of education both at home and abroad,” the prime minister’s office said in a statement.
She served as a deputy minister of culture and youth in Saskatchewan and was later assistant deputy minister at Environment Canada.
Dowdeswell was appointed as an officer of the Order of Canada in 2012 and received a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal in the same year.
© 2014 The Canadian Press