Speak on It, featuring Michaëlle Jean

Designed to showcase the diversity of Black Excellence across disciplines and professions, our Afrocentric speakers’ series called Speak on It! aims to acknowledge and appreciate the plurality of Black expertise and experiences. In this vein, the Office of the President at Western University has invited the Right Honourable Michaëlle Jean to close out Black History Month and the Robbins-Ollivier speakers’ series.

Feb. 29, 4 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Location: McKellar Room, UCC

Michaëlle Jean was appointed Governor General and Commander-in-Chief of Canada in 2005; the first Black woman to reach the highest constitutional office in the country, a function she served with extraordinary dedication for a five-year term. At the end of this mandate, on October 1, 2010, the United Nations immediately called upon her, as UNESCO Special Envoy, to support reconstruction efforts in Haiti, her native country devastated that same year by a brutal earthquake. She also served as Chancellor of the University of Ottawa from 2011 to 2014. In 2014, Michaëlle Jean was elected Secretary General of La Francophonie, the first woman to lead this multilateral organization comprising 88 states and governments on five continents. A seasoned stateswoman and diplomat, her words serve to convene goodwill everywhere in the multilateral sphere, in every UN forum, from New York to Geneva, all the way to the Security Council, as well as within the European Union, the European Parliament, the OECD, the African Union. She is best known and appreciated for her convictions, her deep sense of universal humanistic values, the principles and rules of democracy, the rule of law, justice, and fundamental human rights and freedoms, which she never betrays.