“When you first join the Foreign Service it seems to be a very impossible dream to reach — that eventually you’ll be an ambassador somewhere,” says Dubé.
As the highest-ranking diplomat representing Canada in Morocco, Dubé manages the embassy staff and oversees all of its active programs, everything from managing security threats to negotiating trade partnerships and implementing cooperation projects.
It’s a big job, one which Dubé describes as a “wonderful challenge.” The beauty of the position, she adds, is its variety.
Her love of travel has taken the 20-year Canadian Foreign Service veteran all over the globe, where she has worn many different hats. Often, her work put her at the front lines of Canada’s emerging and evolving relationships with other countries.
Dubé received her first posting in 1995. For the next two years she was a trade commissioner in Canada’s newly established embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam.
At the time, a 20-year-long United States trade embargo had just been lifted, and the Southeast Asian country was opening up to the Western world. “It was fascinating to be there as the country was changing day to day,” she says.
After returning to work in Ottawa for four years, Dubé moved to Rome to head up the political and public affairs section at the Canadian Embassy.
“I arrived in September 2001, a week before 9/11, just as the world changed,” she recounts.
At that particularly busy and challenging point in her career, she was primarily responsible for overseeing security issues and managing the positive political relationship with the fellow G7 nation.
Dubé later headed up the trade and investments section at the Canadian embassy in Paris, from 2009 to 2013.
Between each international posting, Dubé came home to Canada and worked at headquarters in Ottawa. For the year leading up to her recent appointment, from 2013 to 2015, she was director of Invest in Canada at the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service.
“I was asked this summer if I wanted to be considered for the ambassador position,” she says. “Of course, I jumped on the amazing opportunity.”
Born in Paris, Dubé and her parents moved to Sherbrooke, Que., when she was a baby. A few years later they moved to St. Leonard, Que., where she subsequently attended high school and CEGEP.
It was during this period of her life that she got her first taste of living overseas. Between terms, Dubé spent the summer working as an au pair in a small village in Switzerland.
The experience was eye opening, she says. “I wanted to make sure that whatever career I chose had an international aspect to it, where I could not only travel but hopefully live in a different country and experience the culture firsthand,” Dubé says.
Close Concordia ties
Carol McQueen, BA 95, fulfilled a lifelong ambition when she was appointed ambassador to the Republic of Tunisia in late 2015. “It’s an incredible honour and privilege to get to represent Canada and all of Canada’s values and interests as an ambassador abroad,” McQueen says.