Canada: Wayne Wouters to join legal giant

By on 20/04/2015
Wayne Wouters, Former Clerk of the Privy Council, Canada.

Wayne Wouters, the former head of the Canadian civil service, is joining legal giant McCarthy Tétrault as a strategic and policy adviser, it is reported today.

Wouters retired in October 2014 after five years as Clerk of the Privy Council, and 37 years in the public service.

He told Global Government Forum in an interview earlier this year that he enjoyed having time to read, go to the gym, volunteer on the board of the charity United Way Worldwide and “to reflect and think about what I want to do next”.

But from May 1, he will join “the ranks of a growing number of senior bureaucrats who have taken their policy-making experience to law firms after leaving government,” the Ottawa Citizen reports.

Wouters will be the firm’s only strategic and policy adviser, joining a team of high-profile lawyers including former Quebec premiers Jean Charest and Daniel Johnson.

He told the newspaper: “I found the firm to be collaborative, keen and focused. I think it will be a lot of fun and I am looking forward to it.”

He said that the job is the first he’s taken on since retiring from the public service.

As a former public office holder, he faces a five-year “cooling off” period that prevents him from lobbying, but Wouters said he has no intention of lobbying for clients: “I can’t lobby, nor am at all interested in lobbying.”

Wouters was the longest-serving clerk in 25 years. He has been replaced by Janice Charette.

About Winnie Agbonlahor

Winnie is news editor of Global Government Forum. She previously reported for Civil Service World - the trade magazine for senior UK government officials. Originally from Germany, Winnie first came to the UK in 2006 to study a BA in Journalism & Russian at the University of Sheffield. She is bilingual in English and German, and, after spending an academic year abroad in Russia and reporting for the Moscow Times, Winnie also speaks Russian fluently.

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