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Global Energy Security; The Role of Canada

Mon, Apr 17, 2023, 3:30pm - 5:00pm
Featuring: Mr. James Rajotte, Mr. Craig Weichel, and Dr. Sara Vakhshouri
Location: The Institute of World Politics - 1521 16th St NW, Washington, DC 20036, United States

You are cordially invited to attend a lecture on the topic of

Global Energy Security; The Role of Canada


Mr. James Rajotte
Alberta’s Senior Representative to the United States

Mr. Craig Weichel
Counsellor and Program Manager for Energy and Environment at the Embassy of Canada

Dr. Sara Vakhshouri 
Founder and President of SVB Energy International; Adjunct Professor of Energy Security at The Institute of World Politics


Monday, April 17, 2023
3:30-5:00 PM EST


The Institute of World Politics
1521 16th St. NW
Washington D.C. 20036
Marlatt Mansion, Commodore Barry Room
Getting to campus


About the Lecture

Topics discussed throughout the panel will include: (1)Russia’s war, the current global energy crisis and the need for alternative energy sources. Can Canada be a new energy partner for Europe?; (2) Canada’s “responsible” energy production strategy; (3) Energy transition and the need for reliable, sustainable and responsible resources. Where does Canada stand during this?; and (4) The importance of the U.S.- Canada energy partnership in the context of the long-term energy integrity and security of the two countries and North America in general transitions.

About the Speakers

James Rajotte was appointed Alberta’s Senior Representative to the United States on May 1, 2020. Prior to his appointment, Mr. Rajotte served as a Vice President at Rogers Communications, where he was responsible for Provincial and Municipal Government Affairs from November 2015 to April 2020. As a member of the House of Commons for 15 years, Mr. Rajotte served as the Member of Parliament for Edmonton-Southwest for 2000 to 2004, and as the Member of Parliament for Edmonton-Leduc from 2004 to 2015. During his time in the federal Parliament, he served as Chair of the Standing committee on Finance for seven years and Chair of the Parliamentary Committee on Industry Science and Technology for two years. He also served as Chair of the Canada–United Kingdom Inter-parliamentary Association and Vice-Chair of the Canada–United States Inter-parliamentary Group.

Mr. Rajotte had three private member’s bills/motions adopted by the House of Commons: combatting Identity Theft (pretexting); supporting funding for Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia; and improving Financial Literacy in Canada. Mr. Rajotte has served on the Board of Directors of the Alberta Enterprise Group, the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Imagine Canada, and the Wood Buffalo Economic Development Corporation. He also served in a volunteer capacity on the Board of Governors of the University of Alberta. Born and raised in Edmonton, Mr. Rajotte holds a Bachelor of Social Sciences from the University of Ottawa, a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Alberta, and completed the coursework at that same institution for a Master of Arts.

Craig Weichel joined the Foreign Service in 1998 and has served at Canadian missions in Washington (2019-present), Rome (2009-13), Vienna-OSCE (2002-05), New York-UN (2000) and Washington (2000). In Ottawa, he most recently served as Director of the North Korea Task Force (2018-19) and Natural Disaster Response Division (2016-18). He has also had headquarters assignments in the UN Division, Nuclear Non-proliferation Division, Northern Europe Division and US General Relations Division.

Craig holds an Honours BA in History from Wilfrid Laurier University and an MA in History from McMaster University.

Dr. Sara Vakhshouri is founder and president of SVB Energy International, a strategic energy consulting firm with offices in Washington DC and Dubai. She is also an Adjunct Professor of Energy Security at The Institute of World Politics. Dr. Vakhshouri has about two decades of experience of working in the energy industry with extensive experience in global energy market studies, energy security, and geopolitical risk, and she has consulted numerous public and private sector energy and policy leaders.

Dr. Vakhshouri has been based in Washington, D.C. since 2009, where she has advised U.S. and European governments, investment banks, financial institutions, law firms, and international corporations on energy markets, trading and pricing, the geopolitics of energy, and investment patterns. Dr. Vakhshouri has a Ph.D. in energy security and Middle Eastern studies. She has an M.A. in business management (international marketing) and another M.A. in international relations. Dr. Vakhshouri was also the senior energy fellow at the Atlantic Council, and at the Oxford Institute for Energy Studies. Dr. Vakhshouri also has experience of working in both public and private sectors of the Iranian energy industry.

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