Kelly Craft sworn in as U.S. ambassador to Canada
Published Friday, August 18, 2017 5:30PM EDT
Last Updated Friday, August 18, 2017 6:26PM EDT
WASHINGTON -- Kelly Craft was officially sworn in as the U.S. ambassador to Canada on Friday and told CTV News she will present her credentials in Quebec City on Sept. 12. [Update: Craft has postponed her debut. Latest story here].
Craft took the Oath of Office at a private ceremony at the Kentucky governor’s mansion, surrounded by family and friends. Gov. Matt Bevin, a personal friend, became a notary public specifically to administer the Oath. Another ceremonial swearing in by Vice President Mike Pence is expected before she moves north.
A senior White House source told CTV News the administration wanted to ensure Craft was “in place” as the U.S. enters sensitive talks with Canada and Mexico to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. The first round of talks began Wednesday in Washington and sources say Ottawa is scheduled to host a round September 23.
Craft and her husband Joe are top Republican Party donors and close friends with its powerful players including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Pence.
Kelly and Joe Craft at the Washington, D.C. home of U.S. Vice President Mike Pence and his wife, Karen Pence, after Kelly Craft’s Senate Confirmation hearings.
Craft serves on the Board of Trustees of her alma mater, the University of Kentucky. An online biography states that she was appointed by then-president George W. Bush in 2007 to serve as part of the U.S. Delegation to the United Nations, where she advised the U.S. Ambassador to the UN on issues including engagement in Africa.
Below is Craft’s speech she gave after her swearing in:
“Growing up in Glasgow, I never dreamed of a day like this. Thank you Governor and our First Lady for sharing the people’s house with us.
The President honored me with this request to represent our nation to our friend and neighbor. Highest professional honor of my life, but also sobered by the challenges and opportunity this service provides.
Everyday won’t go as planned. But here is what I do know. Whatever success comes my way will be deeply rooted in my faith in God and the man that shares my heart.
It will be founded on my parents and siblings.
It will be founded on the lessons taught by my teachers and mentors from Glasgow Elementary to University of Kentucky.
It will be founded in the promise of children and wisdom of seniors.
It will be founded on the friends Joe and I respect and hold so close.
Although our address will be Ottawa, Kentucky is where my heart is and where I will always return.
It is the place that restores me.
It is the place that cares for my soul.
It is the place I call home.
My service is temporary, it will come to an end.
And while I don’t own ruby slippers, (turns to her husband) Joe, why don’t I own ruby slippers?
I do own these -- my running shoes. And when the time comes, I’ll lace them up, tap my heals three times. Close my eyes. And return home to a place like no other. Kentucky.”