Jillian Stirk

Retired after 30 years of service in the foreign service, she brings strategic expertise in foreign policy and multilateral negotiations.

An expert in foreign policy and multilateral negotiations, Jillian Stirk is a former Ambassador to Norway and assistant deputy minister in the federal public service. Jillian has spent more than thirty years working on human rights, security, and conflict prevention in Eastern Europe, the Balkans, the Middle East, and Afghanistan. She has conducted negotiations through a variety of multilateral organisations including the United Nations, NATO, the OSCE, the Arctic Council, and the EU. She is a 2015 mentor, a Dialogue Associate at the Simon Fraser University Centre for Dialogue, and is co-leading a project for the Trudeau Foundation on Diversity, Pluralism, and the Future of Citizenship.

Jillian Stirk is a former Canadian ambassador and public service executive with experience in international affairs, public policy, and multilateral negotiations. Until June 2013, she was chief foreign policy officer and assistant deputy minister of strategic policy, global issues, and European affairs at the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade. She served as Canada’s ambassador to the Kingdom of Norway until 2009, following postings to Poland and to Canada’s delegations to the United Nations (Vienna), the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).   

In 2010, Ms. Stirk led the Department’s Afghan Task Force during the transition to a civilian mission. In 2013, she prepared Canada’s chairmanship of the Arctic Council. Ms Stirk received the Minister’s Award for Foreign Policy Excellence in 2001 for her work during the Kosovo crisis, and the Deputy Ministers’ Award for Lifetime Achievement in June 2013.   

Ms Stirk is a graduate of the University of British Columbia and holds a master’s degree from Carleton University.  Having returned to Vancouver in 2014, Ms Stirk provides consulting services and volunteers with a number of academic and community organizations. She is a member of the Board of Trustees of the West Vancouver Memorial Library, is a student mentor at the University of British Columbia, and has been a community leader at the Minerva Foundation for BC Women. She enjoys travel, music, cross-country skiing, and other outdoor activities.

  • December 15, 2016
    The last consultation of the Pluralism Project’s cross-country tour, led by 2015 Trudeau Fellow Bessma Momani of the University of Waterloo and 2015 Trudeau Mentor Jillian Stirk of Simon Fraser University’s Centre for Dialogue, took place on 14 December, in Montréal.
  • November 9, 2016
    The Jack P. Blaney Award for Dialogue is presented every second year to an individual who has demonstrated international excellence in the use of dialogue to increase mutual understanding and advance complex public issues. Nominations are encouraged from around the world in the fields of international diplomacy and conflict resolution, climate solutions, intercultural dialogue, civic engagement, and urban sustainability.
  • August 8, 2016
    The Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation is happy to announce that it has approved its second round of targeted-area-of-inquiry (TAI) projects. The three projects include an exploration of Indigenous law, a social innovation lab addressing food waste, and a dialogue on the inclusion of Muslim-Canadian youth.
  • June 24, 2016
    How to attract diversity beyond larger Canadian urban centres? How can social diversity be harnessed for greater economic advantage? And is Canada making the most of social diversity in its cities and towns?
  • March 22, 2016
    Are multicultural societies more or less prosperous than the alternatives? Is transnationalism an opportunity or a threat? And is Canada making the most of social diversity in its cities and towns?
  • March 4, 2016
    Issues around social cohesion, the mass movement of people, and belonging are among the most complex and divisive questions facing many countries today. As part of its mission to support critical thinking and engagement on issues important to our collective future, the Pierre Elliott Trudeau Foundation organized a series of events at London, United Kingdom, at the end of February and beginning of March 2016.