Rafael Barak, Israel's Ambassador to Canada, Our Speaker on July 2nd 
Ed Holder, MP London West; His Excellency Rafael Barak; and, Lillian Reid, President of R/C of London Hyde Park 
His Excellency Rafael Barak, Israel's Ambassador to Canada spoke to Rotarians from both our London Hyde Park club and the Rotary club of London along with guests, including Ed Holder, MP for London West and Bev Shipley, MP for Lambton, Kent Middlesex and members of the local Jewish community.  He addressed the political challenges facing Israel, especially as it is currently surrounded by chaos and change in the Arab world.   He emphasized how the special friendship enjoyed between our two countries has led to collaboration in the fields of science and technology and health care.  He finished by stating that Rotary is strong in Israel with over 60 clubs, many of whom are helping countries in the developing world with technical innovation in health care and water conservation.
 
Rafael Barak Biography
Ambassador Rafael “Rafi” Barak is an accomplished diplomat with extensive expertise in promoting Israel’s diplomatic ties around the globe. He is also a proficient linguist who is fluent in Hebrew, Spanish, English and French.
 
Israel's Ambassador to Canada, His Excellency Rafael Barak, addresses the Rotarians & Guests 
Born in Montevideo, Uruguay, Mr. Barak immigrated to Israel at the age of 18, spending his first year on a kibbutz. He went on to complete his military service and then earn a Bachelor of Arts in History and Political Science at Tel Aviv University in 1973. From 1970 to 1977, he worked as a licenced tour guide showing Israel’s biblical sites, cultural heritage and natural beauty to tourists from around the world. In 1977, he was accepted into the Cadet Course of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He began his career as a diplomat with his first posting from 1979 to 1983 as Second and later First Secretary at the Embassy of Israel in Lima, Peru. In 1983, he received a scholarship from the Rothschild Foundation and completed a Master of Arts degree in Political Science at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
 
Israel's Ambassador to Canada, His Excellency Rafael Barak, addresses the Rotarians & Guests 
From 1985 to 1987, he served as Deputy Director of the Human Resources Department. In 1987, he started a six-year term in Brussels as Counselor and Press Attaché at Israel’s Mission to the European Community and then as Deputy Chief of Mission at the Embassy of Israel in Belgium and Luxembourg.
 
During the Oslo Peace Process, from 1993 to 1996, Mr. Barak worked as the Chief Coordinator for negotiations with the Palestinians. Parallel to this position, he served as Assistant Deputy Minister (ADM) for Coordination and the Director of the Deputy Minister’s Bureau from 1993 to 2000. Then in August of 2000, he was sent to the Embassy in Washington, DC for a five-year term as Minister Plenipotentiary and Deputy Chief of Mission. In 2006, he was posted to the Embassy of Israel in Paris, acting as the Charge d’Affaires, a.i.. 
 
MP Ed HOlder (London West) presents "London: People, Parks and Places" Coffee Table Book by former Rotarian Richard Bain to Ambassador Barak
He returned to Israel in April 2007 to serve as ADM and Head of the Western European Division. From June 2009 to November 2010, he held the position of Senior ADM at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In November 2010, he was appointed Acting Deputy Minister and then in May 2011 he was named Deputy Minister of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. On November 25, 2013, he officially became the Ambassador of Israel to Canada after presenting his credentials to His Excellency the Right Honourable David Johnston, Governor General of Canada.
 
President Lillian presents Ambassador Barak with a Certificate of thanks indicating $50 is being donated to the Rotary Global Polio Eradication Program in his name
He is married to Miriam Barak. Together they have three children and five grandchildren.
 
Sponsors