Royal Ottawa Golf Club, Gatineau, Quebec

AmbCanada convenes regular lunch-time events for our members in the National Capital Region with invited speakers, which are normally held at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club in Chelsea. These events are also webcast live to our members across country. In addition, we convene throughout the year virtual events for our members.

Please find below a listing of our recent events. AmbCanada members can view recordings of past events under the Webinars tab accessible through the Members Only portal on this page.

AmbCanada events are usually conducted under “The Chatham House Rule” which permits participants to communicate to others information and ideas discussed by the speaker or by other participants, provided it is done without attribution. On occasion, with the speakers permission, we relax this rule to permit reporting on the event via regular or social media. 

AmbCanada members are encouraged to invite guests to our in-person events, provided that they take responsibility for their guests observing the Chatham House Rule. However, members should not share the links for our virtual events with non-members without first seeking permission from the moderator or host of the event. 

Periodically, we jointly host events with partner organizations such as the Canadian Foreign Service Alumni Forum, PAFSO or Young Diplomats of Canada. 

Members need to register in advance for all our events by contacting Email notices for all events are sent out several weeks in advance to our members to encourage them to register. AmbCanada will also collect in advance payment for in person luncheon events. 



Wednesday, April 24 – webinar

“Ranking Prime Ministers of Canada in Their Foreign Policy: The Really Good, the Good, and the Ordinary”

Speaker: Professor Patrice Dutil, Department of Politics and Public Administration, Toronto Metropolitan University

Moderator: Pierre Guimond, diplomat in residence and lecturer at the École supérieure d’études internationales (ESEI), Université Laval.

Wednesday, March 20 – Webinar

Presentation by Catalyste+:


Wendy Harris, President and Chief Executive Officer, Catalyste+;

Suzanne Laporte, former Ambassador to Brazil and past Catalyste+ Board Member

Darren Schemmer, former High Commissioner to Ghana and Past Board Catalyste + Chair

Wednesday, March 6 – Luncheon at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club

“UNPLUGGED The Back and Future Story on the Senate Report: More Than a Vocation: Canada’s Need for a 21st Century Foreign Service”

Speaker: The Honourable Senator Peter Boehm

Moderator: Alex Bugailiskis, former Ambassador to Syria, Cuba, Poland, and Italy.

Wednesday, February 21 – Luncheon at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club

“Ukraine: Winning the Fight”

Speaker: Larisa Galadza, former Canadian Ambassador to Ukraine

Moderator: Alison LeClaire, former Ambassador to Russia

Friday, January 19 – Luncheon at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club

“Indo-Pacific strategies: from France to Canada, how allies approach the future in this region?”

Speaker: H.E. Ambassador Jean-Baptiste Jeangène Vilmer, Ambassador of France to Vanuatu

Moderator: Gabriel Lessard, former Canadian Ambassador to Vietnam and Ethiopia



Wednesday, December 6

AmbCanada Holiday Reception

9th Floor, Pearson Building, 125 Sussex Drive, Ottawa

Wednesday, November 22 – Luncheon at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club Annual Writers’ Luncheon

Four authors from our membership talk about their recent books.

Moderator: Ian Ferguson, former High Commissioner to Nigeria

Roxanne DubéEnfin comprendre

Marie Gervais-Vidricaire Silence sur Venise: Une Rencontre de Marcel Proust avec Oscar Wilde, Stefan Zweig and Mariano Fortuny

Hugh StephensIn Defence of Copyright (virtual presentation)

Chris ThompsonThe Struggle Continues: An Arduous Journey of Hope (virtual presentation)

Thursday, November 2 – Luncheon at Royal Ottawa Golf Club

“A Fireside Chat with Stephen Toope”

Speaker: Dr. Stephen Toope, CEO of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR).

Moderator: Jon Allen, former ambassador to Israel and Spain

Thursday, October 19 – Luncheon at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club

“South Africa’s Foreign Policy Choices”

Speaker: H.E. Rieaz Shaik, High Commissioner of South Africa to Canada

Moderator: Paula Caldwell St-Onge, Chair, Canada-Africa Chamber of Business

Tuesday, October 17 – Webinar

“The Causes and Outcomes of the Israeli-Hamas Conflict”

Jon Allen, former Ambassador to Israel and Spain, in conversation with

Richard Kohler, Past President of AmbCanada.

Tuesday, September 26 – Webinar

“The Future of Canada and the United Nations”


Denise Brown, UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Ukraine

Deborah Lyons, former UN Special Representative for Afghanistan

Elizabeth Spehar, UN Assistant Secretary General for Peacebuilding Support

Moderator: Alex Bugailiskis, former Ambassador to Syria, Cuba, Poland, and Italy

Tuesday, June 13

2023 Annual General Meeting and Summer Reception

Royal Ottawa Golf Club

Tuesday, May 23 – Luncheon

“Canada and Haiti: Some Strategic Considerations”

Speaker: Sébastien Carrière, Canada’s Ambassador to Haiti.

Moderator: Patricia Fortier, former Ambassador to Peru, Bolivia and the Dominican Republic

Wednesday, May 3 – Webinar

“Sudan – how did it come to this and how do we move on?”

Speakers: Nick Coghlan, and Adrian Norfolk, both former Head of Mission to Sudan.

Moderator: Michael Small, President of AmbCanada

Wednesday, April 19 – Luncheon at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club

“Canada and the Indo-Pacific: Engaging with a Critical Region”

Speaker: Goldy Hyder, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Business Council of Canada.

Moderator: Paula Caldwell St-Onge, Canada-Africa Chamber of Business

Wednesday, March 29 – Webinar

“Israel: Illiberalism and Occupation – A Battle for the Country’s Soul”

Speaker: Jon Allen, former Ambassador to Israel and Spain.

Moderator: Jill Stirk, former Ambassador to Norway

Thursday, February 23 – Webinar

“Ukraine: How will the War End?”

Speaker: Eric Reguly, European Bureau Chief for The Globe and Mail.

Moderator: Alex Bugailiskis, former Ambassador to Syria, Cuba, Poland and Italy

Wednesday, January 18

Annual Writer’s Luncheon

Six authors from our membership talk about their recent books.

Moderator: Ian Ferguson, former High Commissioner to Nigeria

Brian Buckley: Tim’s Story

Carol Bujeau: Triple Sex and Other Tales from an Ambassador’s Wife

Jean-Yves Dionne: Diplomates en Péril suivi de Chroniques peu diplomatiques

Gar Pardy: The Scary World of Nuclear Weapons – Agenda for Elimination

Claire Poulin: Arthabaska – À la croisée des destins

Gary J. Smith: Ice War Diplomat: Hockey Meets Cold War Politics at the 1972 Summit Series



September 21 

Our guest speaker will be Marta Morgan, who was Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs until her retirement on August 31, 2022

Link to bio: ‘s BIO (2022)[8127]

FOR THOSE ATTENDING THE LUNCHEON: Our inaugural luncheon following a two-plus years hiatus due to COVID-19, will take place on Wednesday, September 21, 2022 at the Royal Ottawa Golf Club on Aylmer Road at 12 (noon) for drinks. Luncheon will be served at 12:30 pm. The cost is $38.00 per person.  Please confirm your attendance by email to no later than September 16th.  The deadline for cancellation is 12 noon the day before the luncheon. 

FOR THOSE JOINING THE WEBINAR:  Please register for the webinar and log on before 1:15 EST, using the following link:





The 8th annual AMBCANADA Writers’ Luncheon 





2018 Monthly Luncheons

  • November 21 –RHOMA Writers’ Luncheon.
  • October 17 – Denis Coderre, former mayor of Montreal and Cabinet minister under Prime Minister Paul Martin on the increasing role of cities in the world of diplomacy.
  • September 19 – Robert Giroux, President of the Ottawa Branch of the National Association of Federal Retirees on “Take a break from following the NAFTA Talks… let’s talk NAFR.”
  • July 18 – Senator André Pratte on “What’s new at the Senate”.
  • June 20 – Jocelyn Coulon, author of “Un selfie avec Justin Trudeau” on “Canada in the world. Is Trudeau keeping his promises?”
  • May 23 – Catherine Cano, President and General Manager of CPAC (Cable Public Affairs Channel) on the role of a parliamentary channel and democracy.
  • April 18- Jonathan Fried, Personal Representative of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau for the G20 and Coordinator for International Economic Relations at Global Affairs Canada.
  • March 21 –  Daniel Jean, National Security Advisor to the Prime Minister, about his role and the challenges facing Canada when it comes to national security during these complicated times.
  • February 21 –  David Ljunggren, political correspondent at Reuters Canada.
  • January 17 – E., Sabine Sparwasser, Ambassador of the Federal Republic of Germany to Canada, “Challenges and opportunities facing Germany and the European Union in 2018.”


2017 Monthly Luncheons

  • November 22 – Foreign Service Authors and Their Books.
  • October 18 – Ian Shugart, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, shared the current opportunities and challenges his department is facing .
  • September 20 – Greg Donaghy, Head of the Historical Section and Ms. Mary Halloran, Historical Section of Global Affairs Canada presented “Canada’s Department of External Affairs, Volume 3: Innovation and Adaptation, 1968-1984”.
  • July 19 – Guy Saint-Jacques,“2017: A delicate year for Chinese President Xi Jinping” and insights into the bilateral relations between Canada and China.
  • June 21 – a Financial Panel moderated by Michael Adams Senior Vice President at Brookfield Soundvest Capital Management Ltd., focusing on various aspects of financial planning.
  • May 10 – Honourable Marie-Claude Bibeau, Minister of International Development and La Francophonie on “Insights on Canada’s development policy and programs in light of today’s international context.
  • April 19  – Senator Peter Harder, Leader of the Government in the Senate
  • March 15– Gilles Rivard, “Lessons learned from the 2010 campaign to win a seat on the UN Security Council and how Canada must prepare for the 2020 election”. Mr. Rivard will be accompanied by Ms. Tamara Mawhinney, Executive Director, UN Security Council Campaign at Global Affairs Canada
  • February 15  – His Excellency Nicolás Lloreda-Ricaurte, Colombia’s Ambassador to Canada Insights on the Peace accords between his Government and the FARC, as well as on the ongoing negotiations with the Ejercito de Liberacion Nacional (ELN)
  • January 18 –   Colin Robertson, Canada-US relations under new US Administration
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