Former Norwegian Ambassador to Speak

Posted by Paula Paine on November 5, 2013 in Alumni, Events, "Other News", "The College", "Upcoming Events", "Your OU" arman aardal001-cropOttawa University’s annual Hostetter DeFries Endowed Cultural Event will feature former Norwegian ambassador Arman Aardal ‘70 on November 20 and 21. During two presentations, Aardal will discuss the struggles, successes and lasting friendships he encountered throughout his journey on the word stage.

The first presentation is entitled “Diplomacy – What is it and Who Needs it?” and will take place Wednesday, November 20, at 7:00 p.m. in the Fredrikson Chapel, 1001 S. Cedar Street, Ottawa. Aardal’s second session, “We Can All Make a Difference,” will be given at 11:00 a.m. on Thursday, November 21, also in the chapel.

Aardal graduated from Ottawa University in 1970 with a B.A. in Political Science. He completed his graduate studies in international relations (School of Government) at Georgetown University, Washington, D.C.

After finishing his military service in His Majesty’s Royal Guards (Norway), Aardal worked two years at the Oslo office of The Associated Press. Upon completing his foreign officer training program in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, he was posted to the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya, where he was deputy chief of mission and acting ambassador. During this tenure, he was also officer-in-charge for Ethiopia and Uganda. Later assignments brought him to the Permanent Mission of Norway to the United Nations in New York, and then back to Kenya as permanent representative of Norway to The United Nations Environment Program (UNEP) and the United Nations Human Settlements Program (UN HABITAT. In the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Oslo, he served in various positions in the Department for United Nations Affairs. His final assignment abroad was as Norway’s ambassador to the State of Eritrea.

Ambassador Aardal and his wife, Marcella (Goertzen) Aardal ’71, make their home in Vestby, a small community south of the capital of Oslo. Aardal is active in several church and community projects, among them serving on the board of directors for Friends of MYSA (Mathare Youth Sports Association) in Norway. The association supports sports and community service activities among MYSA’s 25,000 members in the slums of Nairobi.

The Hostetter-DeFries Family Endowed Cultural Fund was established in 1999 by Ottawa University alumna Alice Jo (Hostetter) DeFries. The goal of the fund and annual cultural event is to host guest speakers who have contributed significantly to the social, artistic and cultural improvement of society.