David Runnalls, Past IISD President, Appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada

November 27, 2020

IISD sends warm congratulations to John David Runnalls, who served as IISD’s President from 1998 until 2010, on being appointed an Officer of the Order of Canada. The honour is in recognition of his decades-long commitment to—and influence in—promoting environmentally sustainable development around the world.

"David is an outstanding Canadian voice advocating for a more sustainable world," says IISD’s current President and CEO, Richard Florizone. "We are thrilled to see him receive this well-deserved honour."

Over his distinguished career, David led international sustainability efforts on many fronts, embedding environmental and social imperatives into international trade agendas and ensuring meaningful participation by all countries in multilateral negotiations on critical issues like climate change.

Under David’s leadership, IISD put an international spotlight on the costs and effects of subsidies in a way no organization had done before, creating the highly acclaimed Global Subsidies Initiative in 2005. Previously an issue that languished on the back burner, energy subsidy reform is now a standard policy instrument and is often discussed in climate negotiations and by multilateral organizations like the World Bank and G20.

He has also been a force of nature here at home, advising federal and provincial governments on sustainable development issues and enthusiastically supporting a growing Canadian ecosystem of organizations working for a cleaner future.

As IISD President, he helped nurture the next generation of sustainability advocates through the Young Canadians for a Sustainable Future leadership program, which placed young people as interns with non-governmental organizations, governments, and other institutions around the world. These leaders made significant contributions, and many are now high-profile leaders in sustainable development themselves.

Today, David serves as the Chair of the Board of the Pembina Institute for Sustainable Development. He remains a Distinguished Fellow of IISD and of the Centre for International Governance Innovation in Waterloo. He is also Executive in Residence at the Institute for the Environment at the University of Ottawa and a Senior Fellow of the Smart Prosperity Institute.

"I am humbled and honoured to be named to the Order," he says. "It recognizes my years of service to the planet and its environment."

Congratulations David!

David Runnalls sits at a long conference table at a UN meeting holding up a book
David Runnalls displays IISD's publication, Six Easy Pieces: Five Things the WTO Should Do - and One It Should Not / IISD-ENB