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JIS News

Jamaican Alvin Curling, has been named Canada’s Ambassador to the Dominican Republic, with immediate effect.
With his new appointment, Mr. Curling, who has been Speaker of the Ontario Legislative Assembly since November 2003, has had to resign that position, in addition to giving up his position as Member of Provincial Parliament (MPP) for the constituency of Scarborough-Rouge River, to which he was first elected in 1985.
Mr. Curling was one of 10 new ambassadors announced by Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister Pierre Pettigrew on Friday, August 19.
In an interview with JIS News, Mr. Curling said that he was “quite honoured” to be named Canada’s highest diplomatic representative to the Dominican Republic and he was looking forward to his new job. “There comes a time when one has to make an exit from elected politics and there is no better way for me to do this than to serve Canada in this manner,” he stated.
Jamaica’s Consul General to Toronto, Vivia Betton, in offering congratulations to the former House Speaker, noted the federal appointment was a notable recognition of his contribution to the public service.
“The federal government is demonstrating that it embraces multiculturalism as an official policy of Canada and we are proud of the confidence and recognition that is being shown in Alvin, who has always cherished the idea of serving Canada,” she told JIS News.
Mr. Curling, who hails from Kingston and migrated to Canada in the 1970s, celebrated 20 years as an elected parliamentarian earlier this year. During his political career, he has served in many capacities including Minister of Housing, Minister of Skills Development, Parliamentary Assistant to the Premier, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs and most recently, Speaker of the Ontario Legislature.
A graduate of the University of Technology, Mr. Curling was inducted in the institution’s Hall of Fame and awarded an honorary Doctor of Letters degree last year for his outstanding work as a parliamentarian. He also holds an Order of Distinction, Commander Class, from the Government of Jamaica.