A former Canadian consul general in Atlanta who made her name as a strong pro-trade voice during a time of turbulence has been tapped as her country’s next ambassador and permanent representative to the World Trade Organization in Geneva.
Nadia Theodore left diplomacy for a spell upon her departure from Atlanta in 2020, when she joined Maple Leaf Foods as senior vice president.
The self-professed “trade nerd” is to replace Stephen de Boer at the WTO, according to an announcement by the Canadian government Thursday.
She will make use of her deep knowledge of international trade, a strength that served her well as she conducted multiple road shows making Canada’s case for North American integration while NAFTA was being renegotiated into what the Trump administration called the U.S., Mexico Canada Agreement.
Ms. Theodore had come from a prior trade-oriented posting with Global Affairs Canada, the agency that handles the country’s diplomatic, trade and humanitarian outreach. She served as director for negotiations on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, an agreement that was launched by the U.S. and concluded in Atlanta. Mr. Trump pulled the country out of the deal shortly after entering office in 2017, leaving the 11 other Pacific Rim countries to finish and implement on their own what is now known as the CPTPP.
Before her time in Atlanta, which ran from 2017-20, Ms. Theodore served for another three-year stint in Geneva, from 2009-12. She also served as director of the secretariat for the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement. Ms. Theodore joined International Trade Canada in 2004 after beginning her public service career with the Canada Revenue Agency in 2000.
Toward the end of her tenure in Atlanta, Ms. Theodore spoke often about themes of diversity and inclusion, particularly when it comes to women in diplomacy.
The Dean Rusk International Law Center at the University of Georgia is the presenting sponsor of Global Atlanta's Diplomacy Channel. Subscribe here for monthly Diplomacy newsletters.