Members of the diplomatic corps, ASEF partners and alumni visited ASEF to attend a farewell reception in honour of Ambassador Dominique Girard, outgoing Executive Director of the Asia-Europe Foundation. The reception was held on 31 May 2011 in Singapore.
During the reception, ASEF Deputy Executive Director Ambassador Nguyen Quoc Khanh expressed his admiration for Ambassador Girard, highlighting his important contributions to ASEF, including the implementation of a three-point strategy. “I would like to express my gratitude and high appreciation for the work and achievements that ASEF was able to do during his term. On behalf of the ASEF team, we wish him all the best for the future.”
Professor Wim Stokhof, ASEF Governor for the Netherlands and current Chairman of ASEF’s Board of Governors, paid a very light-hearted tribute to Ambassador Girard as he retires from his official diplomatic service. “We all are grateful for your enthusiasm and your intelligent and sophisticated leadership. I wish you a very balanced and relaxed post-ASEF life and salute you on behalf of all Governors, staff-members, stakeholders and the thousands of individuals whom you enabled to participate in ASEF events.”
Professor Leo Tan, ASEF Governor for Singapore, also expressed his appreciation of ASEF and Ambassador Girard’s leadership: “It’s not always easy, but at the end of the day, it’s the spirit of the human endeavour to make this a better world that we have organisations like ASEF. We are very grateful for your contributions, Dominique.”
Responding, Ambassador Girard expressed his heartfelt appreciation to those who came to the reception, and paid tribute to the ASEF staff for helping further the ambitions of the Foundation. He also shared his thoughts on ASEF, stating that “ASEF is an idea – an idea that beyond political or economic interests we have something worth developing.” He added that “international life is not only about promoting interests but is also about working on relationships between people.”
Ambassador Girard will step down as ASEF’s Executive Director on 31 July 2011. He will be succeeded by Ambassador Michel Filhol, who is currently France’s Ambassador to Australia.
View the photos from the reception