General Consul Josef Beck
Consul General Josef Beck is happy to be in Vancouver. I arranged to meet him to ask a few questions about him and his work here in Vancouver, to share with my readers.
1. What were some of his postings? After graduating from the University of Göttingen in economics, Josef Beck started working for the Department of Foreign affairs in Bonn. In 1982, he worked at the German Permanent Representation to the EU in Brussels. Between 1984 and 1987, he worked at the German Embassy in Kinshasa, the capital of The Republic of Zaire, a central African state, now known as the “Democratic Republic of the Congo. After working at the NATO Dapartment in the Foreign Office, Consul Beck worked in Quito, Ecuador as Deputy Ambassador. He then joined the political department of the German Embassy in Washington, DC. After this posting he became Deputy Consul General in Los Angeles for five years. He moved to Prague to head the Economic Section ot the German Embassy. From 2008 to 2011, Consul Beck was Director for the Andean Countries in the Foreign Office. Recently, from 2011 to 2014, he served as Ambassador of Germany in Jamica, with responsibility also for the Bahamas, the Turcs and Cacos and the Cayman Islands. He worked one year in the World Bank on climate change, before coming to Vancouver. Consul Beck has a great interest in climate change and feels that this is today one of the biggest challenges for all countries. Germany’s Energiewende or energy turnaround initiative aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by increments starting at 40 per cent by 2020 or up to 80-95 per cent by 2050. Consul Beck hints to the great importance of the 2015 United Nations Cimate Change Conference, whose objective is to achieve a legally binding and universal agreement on fighting climate change (Nov 30th to Dec 11th, 2015). He feels that the outcome of this Conference will greatly impact on the future of all countries including Canada & Germany.
2. Where will he reside and what made him choose this location? Consul Josef Beck lives in West Vancouver as it is close to downtown and allows him to fulfil his social obligations in a lovely setting.
3. Where is he from in Germany and where does he consider home? Consul Beck was born between Lake Constance and Black Forest in Bärenthal, a small village in southern BadenWürttemberg, Deutschland. He still likes to visit his home state and travel around the area to visit friends and family at least once a year.
4. How is he planning to celebrate the 3. of October this year? Consul Josef Beck plans to keep the venue of the Shaughnessy Country Club the same and hopes to offer a worthy reception to honor the 25th anniversary of the reunification of Germany.
5. Will he be attending the “Deutscher Platz” celebration?
Yes, I have gladly accepted the invitation to take part in the celebrations.
The Annual Deutscher Platz Event will take place Sunday, Sept 27th 2015 at 2 pm on 29th Avenue & Atlin Street, adjacent to Slocan Park, in the area of Vancouver known as “Renfrew Heighs”. www.deutscherplatz.org (also known as the German Canadian Heritage Plaza). 6. What do you like best about Vancouver? Vancouver has always been in the top five places to live in the world, and ever since a visit here a couple of years ago, I have understood why. 7. What message would you pass on to the German Community in your geographic area of responsibility? The mission of a diplomat is generally defined by his government. It is basically twofold that is keeping his government informed on important developments and the realities in his host country and explain the realities, developments and policies of his home country to his host country. More specifically this means to show that Germany is an open and modern country striving to be a responsible member of the international community.