Francis Joseph Furtado, BA’86, MA’88

Francis Xavier Furtado

It is with great sadness that we announce the sudden death of Francis Furtado in Ottawa on January 3, 2017. Francis was born on April 2, 1966 in Cardston, Alberta and grew up in Southern Alberta before making Ottawa his home.

In 1986, Francis obtained a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Political Science and International Relations from the University of British Columbia. He then went on to complete a Master of Arts degree at UBC in 1988.

Following graduation, Francis began his employment in the federal public service. During his career of almost 23 years, he worked at Canada’s Department of National Defence, the Privy Council Office, the Department of Foreign Affairs, and was posted to the Canadian Embassy in Washington, DC. Francis’ professional life was filled with accolades, including two Deputy Ministers’ Commendations and the Exceptional Achievement Award at the Privy Council Office. He was appreciated for his intellectual curiosity, strategic thinking, and fine pen; he was also a kind and supportive mentor.

Both during and following his career in public service, Francis authored several papers and co-edited a number of books on Canadian foreign and defence policy. His most recent work is entitled “Beyond Afghanistan: An International Security Agenda for Canada”, co-edited with Dr James G. Fergusson.

Francis was happiest when surrounded by friends and family, engaged in thoughtful and spirited political debate. He was open to all views – even if he disagreed – if they were backed by evidence, conviction, and passion. Francis also enjoyed cooking and food. Discussions held over dinner or in the kitchen made fond memories, particularly if his guests managed to make him laugh hard enough to cry!

Francis was an avid reader, loved music and enjoyed most televised sports and, in particular, sports commentary – his favourites being football, tennis, basketball, hockey and Formula 1 motorsport.

Francis is predeceased by his father Menino. He is survived by: his mother Amalia; his sister Sarah, brother-in-law Christopher, and niece Naomi; as well as his brother Xavier, and sister-in-law Carrie Lee.

The family is grateful to Benoit Bazinet, Isabelle Gallen and staff at the Beechwood Funeral Home in Ottawa.

We are also thankful to Jim McKeown and Gary Greenwood at Coldwell Banker Rhodes & Company.

We greatly appreciate the help, thoughtfulness and kindness extended to Francis and his family at the Queen Elizabeth Towers.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made in Francis’ memory to a charity of your choice.