In Memory of




Obituary for Anita Christina Szlazak

Died peacefully at home in Ottawa on Tuesday, January 5, 2021. Survived by her dear brother Ian Szlazak (Patricia MacDonald) and beloved nephew John Patrick Szlazak.

Born on January 1, 1943 in Fulmer, Buckinghamshire, England. Immigrated to Canada in 1950 with her parents Dr. Jan Pawel and Christina (Matecz) Szlazak. Grew up in Regina, Saskatchewan, where she attended Sacred Heart Academy. Graduated from St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto (BA Economics, 1963); College of Europe, Bruges, Belgium (Certificate Advanced European Studies - Economics, 1964); Harvard Graduate School of Business Administration, Boston, Mass. (Advanced Management Program, 1981). Research Economist, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Paris, France (1964-67). Came to Ottawa as a Foreign Service Officer in the Department of External Affairs in 1967. During a long and varied career with the Public Service of Canada, she was appointed: Director General, International Telecommunications Branch, Department of Communications; Commissioner, Public Service Commission of Canada; Executive Director, Government of Canada Office for the 1988 Olympic Winter Games; Member, Canadian International Trade Tribunal. She was honoured to receive the Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Medal for her contributions to the Public Service of Canada. Following her retirement, she was the first Canadian elected Commissioner, United Nations International Civil Service Commission, New York (2003-10).

Throughout her life, Anita loved classical music and opera. She also enjoyed a number of sports, including alpine and cross-country skiing. She was passionate about horses, and was an accomplished equestrian. In addition, she had a lifelong interest in worldwide travel and adventure, and the great outdoors. Anita always cherished her longstanding relationships with extended family and close friends in Canada, the USA, and Europe. Over the past year, Anita remained most grateful for the excellent, thoughtful care received from: medical specialists and staff at The Ottawa Hospital; her palliative care physician, Dr. Alex Duong; and her private caregiver, Ms. Lourdes Betancourt.

Due to the current Covid-19 restrictions, a private Funeral Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica, Sussex Drive, Ottawa at 10:00a.m. on Saturday, January 9, 2021.

As an expression of sympathy, donations to the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation would be appreciated. Interment in Riverside Memorial Park, Regina, beside her parents.