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Commercial Service Toronto

Address: Suite 602 - 480 University Avenue
Toronto, Ontario, M5G 1V2
Phone: (416) 595-5412
Email: office.toronto@trade.gov

Canadian Mailing Address:
360 University Ave.
Toronto, Ontario, M5G 1S4

Rick Ortiz, Principal Commercial Officer and Consul for Commercial Affairs
Phone: (416) 595-5412
Email: Rick.Ortiz@trade.gov

  • Rick completed his Bachelor of Arts in International Relations Management from Claremont McKenna College in 1983. After five years in international sales and marketing throughout Latin American, the Middle East and Africa representing a number of U.S. educational publishing companies, he obtained his Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy from the Fletcher School of International Law and Diplomacy, Tufts University in1990.

    Rick Ortiz is the Deputy Senior Commercial Officer (DSCO) at the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa and is responsible for directing and managing the U.S. Department of Commerce's trade development programs and business facilitation services throughout Canada. Prior to arriving in Canada, Rick was the Commercial Counselor, Deputy Senior Commercial Officer in Mexico City.

    In 1998 Rick was commissioned by President Bill Clinton into the Foreign Service of the United States of America. Rick served as Commercial Attaché at the U.S. Embassy in Bogotá, Colombia, 1998 – 2000, as Senior Commercial Officer to Amman, Jordan, 2001-03, and from 2005-2009 was the Regional Senior Commercial Officer in Casablanca, Morocco responsible for Morocco, Algeria and a partner post in Tunisia.

    From May 2003 until January 2004, Rick served under Ambassador Bremmer and the Coalition Provisional Authority as Senior Advisor to the Iraqi Ministry of Industry and Minerals in Baghdad, Iraq, and in summer 2004 he returned to Baghdad and re-opened the Commercial Service operation in Baghdad under Ambassador Negroponte.

Shakir Farsakh, Deputy Principal Commercial Officer
Phone: (416) 595-5412
Email: Shakir.Farsakh@trade.gov

Shakir joined the Foreign Service in May after an eight-year tenure as the Director of the Long Island Export Assistance Center, for the U.S. Commercial Service, providing international business development, matchmaking and export educational support to companies in Nassau and Suffolk Counties in New York. He has worked as an International Trade Specialist in Manhattan and Boston, and in Commerce Department HQ as the Associate Director for the Africa, Near East, and South Asia office. In addition, he managed strategic partnerships for one of the pioneer cloud computing companies in the Boston area, creating the template for strategic partner interaction. Shakir has served as the Senior Commercial Officer to Morocco in 2008, and the United Arab Emirates in 2004, on a temporary duty basis.

As a member of the site advance team for Secretaries of Commerce Brown and Daley, he had most notably helped set up the first ever cabinet level meeting with Secretary Ron Brown and PLA Chairman Yasser Arafat in Gaza. He is a graduate of The Paul Nitze School of Advanced International Studies and has studied Arabic in Egypt and Jordan. Shakir also speaks French and a little Russian.

Stefan Popescu, Commercial Specialist
Phone: (416) 595-5412, ext. 223
Email: Stefan.Popescu@trade.gov

  • Senior Advisor/Commercial Specialist covering the following focus sectors across Canada: FDI SelectUSA programs -planning , coordination, major investors development in Financial, Insurance and other key sector; Energy power generation, transmission, and distribution – coordination, FDI, advocacy; Automotive – coordination, FDI, advocacy. He also covers general industrial equipment and provides guidance for technical sectors.

Previously Stefan managed start-up companies and subsidiaries of Panasonic Corp. and Siemens, after starting his career in engineering for nuclear power plants. Stefan has engineering and economics degrees and business administration certification, and he speaks several languages.

Ruth Williamson, Commercial Specialist
Phone: (416) 595-5412, ext. 238
Email: Ruth.Williamson@trade.gov

  • Responsible for the following sectors across Canada: Travel & Tourism;
    Building/Construction Products and Services.

Ontario (Regional) coverage: Film/Video and Recordings; Marine Equipment; Plastics/Chemicals.

Pixie Irving, Commercial Assistant
Phone: (416) 595-5412 ext. 224
Email: Pixie.Irving@trade.gov

  • Responsible for the following sectors across Canada: National coverage: Consumer Goods; Furniture.

Ontario (Regional) coverage: Giftware; Jewelry; Musical Instruments; Personal Products; Sporting Goods; Textiles/ Apparel; Toys & Games.

Pixie is also the Budget and Systems Administrator for the office and is the National Coordinator for the CS Canada Internship Program which she also manages regionally for the CS Toronto office.

Bojan Opsenica, Investment Assistant
Phone: (416) 595-5412 ext. 221
Email: Bojan.Opsenica@trade.gov

  • SelectUSA Canada representative. Responsible for assisting Canadian companies with all matters related to investment and operational expansion in the U.S., including: Counselling, ombudsman service, events, and contact with U.S. Federal agency, State and Regional representatives

Oksana Solovei, Commercial Assistant
Phone: (416) 595-5412 ext. 227

  • Ontario (Regional) coverage: Business Equipment; Computer Products & Services; Educational Training Services; Hotel-Restaurant; Food Processing-Packaging; Multimedia; Print Media; Telecom Products/Services. Healthcare; Laboratory/Scientific Instruments

Trade Support: Energy Power-Gen; Oil & Gas Services

Beyond the Border – Border Issues

Anya Yablonska, Commercial Assistant
Phone: (416) 595-5412 ext. 229
Email: Anya.Yablonska@trade.gov

  • Responsible for the following sectors across Canada: Automotive (including RCC).

Ontario (Regional) coverage: Aerospace; Provincial Government Procurement

Canada - US Trade Stats
  • U.S. goods and private services trade with Canada totaled $707 billion in 2012. click here to learn more about Canada - US Trade Stats.
  • The Canada Border Services Agency’s (CBSA) eManifest initiative is changing the way commercial goods coming into Canada are processed.  Learn more and stay informed! Visit the CBSA Web site regularly and subscribe to the eManifest RSS news feed to receive updates when they happen.

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