Life and career
Burney was born in Fort William, Ontario (now known as Thunder Bay) to George William Burney (1886–1951) of Westville, Nova Scotia, and Annie Mary MacKay (1906–1995), who was born in Durban, South Africa but grew up on the Isle of Lewis in the Scottish Hebrides.
He then entered the federal public service and the Canadian diplomatic corps, subsequently serving in Japan and, as Ambassador, in Korea. From 1987 to 1989 he served as Chief of Staff to Prime Minister Brian Mulroney.
Burney was then hired by Bell Canada and worked as Chairman and CEO of the company from 1993 to 1999. He then moved to CAE Inc., serving as President and CEO until 2004. The boards of directors on which Burney has sat or now sits include CanWest Global Communications (which went bankrupt), Quebecor World Inc., Shell Canada and TransCanada Corp.. He is currently the president of the board of New Brunswick Power and serves on the advisory board of Paradigm Capital.
On January 24, 2013, Lakehead University announced that Burney would become its 8th Chancellor
Burney has received many honours in recognition of his work. He was named an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1993, and has been conferred honorary Doctor of Laws degrees from Lakehead University, Queen's University, Carleton University, and Wilfrid Laurier University.
- [Burney, Derek. Getting It Done: A Memoir. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2005, pp. 3-7. ISBN 0-7735-2926-8.
- Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada Complete List of Posts
None (see Principal Secretary of the PMO)
|Chief of Staff of the Prime Minister's Office
- Burney, Derek. Getting It Done: A Memoir. Montreal: McGill-Queen's University Press, 2005. ISBN 0-7735-2926-8.