Law firm Bennett Jones LLP says it has hired former foreign minister John Baird, who abruptly quit politics in February.
The firm says Mr. Baird – who had also served as an Ontario cabinet minister under former Tory premier Mike Harris, where he earned a reputation for feisty Question Period performances – will serve as a senior adviser.
Mr. Baird joins a large team of former political heavyweights at Bennett Jones that includes former Bank of Canada governor David Dodge, prime minister Jean Chrétien's former political adviser Eddie Goldenberg, former Canadian ambassador to the United States Allan Gotlieb, former Supreme Court justice Jack Major and former deputy prime minister Anne McLellan.
The firm also recently announced the hiring of Leo de Bever, former head of the massive Alberta Investment Management Corp. pension fund, as a senior advisor.
In a statement, Mr. Baird said he would be offering "strategic counsel" to the firm and its foreign and domestic clients, but will not be "making representations to the Government of Canada."
"In particular, I am excited to continue my interest in Canada-China relations, the Bennett Jones office in Beijing being a further draw for me to the firm," Mr. Baird said in the statement.
It is not the first new job Mr. Baird has taken since leaving public office. In April, it emerged that he was taking a gig as an advisor to Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li, son of one of the wealthiest men in Asia, on international matters.
Barrick Gold Corp. has also hired him to sit on its international advisory board, and Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. nominated him to serve as a director.
Mr. Li has Canadian citizenship, as does his father, 86-year-old business magnate Li Ka-shing, who controls Calgary-based Husky Energy and is well known in Vancouver for redeveloping waterfront land used for the 1986 World's Fair.