Derek H. Burney is respected internationally as an insightful and effective advocate for Canada. After years of experience in Canada's foreign service, with assignments in New Zealand, Japan and Korea, Burney was appointed chief of staff to the prime minister and played an instrumental role in the 1988 Canada-U.S. Free Trade Agreement. From 1989 to 1993, he served as Canada's ambassador to the United States.
Burney has also held prominent positions in the private sector, including chairman and CEO of Bell Canada International, and president and CEO of CAE Inc. Currently, he is senior strategic advisor to Norton Rose OR LLP, chairman of the board of directors of Canwest Global Communications Corporation, member of the board of directors of TransCanada, visiting professor and senior distinguished fellow at Carleton University, and senior research fellow at the Canadian Defence & Foreign Affairs Institute.
Presented with the Public Service of Canada's Outstanding Achievement Award in 1992, Burney was also named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1993, and has received four honorary doctor of laws degrees from Canadian universities. His memoir of his government service, Getting it Done, was published in 2005.