Statement by Ambassador Kelly Craft following presentation of her Letters of Credence

October 23, 2017

Statement by Ambassador Kelly Craft following presentation of her Letters of Credence

As Delivered

Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen

I am honored to be here in this historic place, to present my letters of credence to Governor General Julie Payette.  I am grateful for the kind welcome the Governor General has extended to me.  She is a person of many accomplishments, some of which, I understand, are literally out of this world. It is an honor for me to meet the Heads of Mission of Nigeria, Tunisia, Peru, and Zambia, who have presented their credentials today as well.  I look forward to working with each of my colleagues in the diplomatic corps.  Surely, there is no better posting than Canada!

It is a privilege to represent the United States in Canada, and to be entrusted with the responsibility of working so closely with such an important friend, ally, and neighbor.

And it is a great joy for me to share this adventure with my husband, Joe.  He has been a constant source of encouragement in every step of the journey that brought us to Ottawa.

No two countries share a deeper or broader relationship than Canada and the United States.  We are bound together by our history, our values, our economy, our families, our environment, and our resolve to improve the lives of our citizens.

As Ambassador, I look forward to traveling throughout Canada and meeting Canadians from coast…to coast…to coast.  I am eager to learn from all of you, and to promote a greater understanding of the United States.

I hold this position in trust.  I will work to protect our strong economic relationship.  I am committed to continuing our collaboration to address security at the border.  But, I also want to make sure we continue to make it easier to engage in cross-border trade and travel.

The United States and Canada are partners around the world.  Our interests in promoting freedom and security are aligned.  Today, in some of the most challenging circumstances, our troops stand shoulder to shoulder protecting our values.  That partnership is a duty that we must all uphold.

I look forward to my initial meetings with members of the Canadian Government. I want to get to know Canadians from all walks of life and learn from you. I want to listen to leaders at the federal, provincial, and local levels. I want to listen to community leaders, educators, and representatives of the many groups who make Canada a dynamic multicultural society.  I am eager to hear the many voices that define this remarkable nation.

Later this week, Canada will lay to rest one of her favorite sons:  Gord Downie.  It is clear that he deeply loved Canada.  His poetic voice fell silent too soon.  He once said that in recent years, it was hard for him “to leave a song without a glimmer of hope.”  He viewed art, his music, and his writing, as a way “to help bring people closer in”. I believe this is important business that we should all be about!

What a privilege to be able to represent the United States here in Canada.  What a privilege to be part of one of the most enduring partnerships the world has ever known.

If I may echo the sentiments of President Kennedy, I truly feel amongst friends.

Thank you