SALT LAKE CITY -- Meet Paul Campbell, chairman of Campbell Companies and Canada’s Honorary Consul to Utah.
Unbeknownst to many, but perhaps unsurprisingly, Utah has deep economic and cultural ties with Canada. Canadian fur trappers explored Utah’s terrain long before Latter-day Saint pioneers arrived in the Salt Lake Valley. These trappers were engaged in the fur trade, forming some of the first trading relationships between Canada and the area that would later become the State of Utah. From those simple frontier beginnings, trade relations between Utah and Canada have expanded to encompass all sectors of the economy. According to the United States Census Bureau, Canada consistently ranks among Utah’s top three trading partners. Within the UCC, the Honorary Consul of Canada, Paul Campbell, plays a vital role in facilitating and continuing Utah’s long-standing and mutually beneficial relationship with Canada.
A native of Utah, Mr. Campbell previously served a church mission in Alberta and the Northwest territories. Upon returning to Utah, he obtained an undergraduate degree from the University of Utah. After graduation, he began working for his family’s business, Campbell Companies, where he is currently a chairman. Outside of the family business, Paul is an adjunct professor at the University of Utah’s David Eccles School of Business and he serves on the board of numerous other businesses. Throughout his career, Paul has worked closely with Canadian businesses helping organize multiple trade missions. He attributes these activities as the reason he was nominated by the Canadian Consular General in Denver for the Honorary Consul role he now occupies.
While many Honorary Consuls are primarily focused on visa and passport services, Paul’s focus is strengthening and maintaining economic relations between Canada and Utah, which includes not only trade, but also foreign direct investment between Utah and Canadian companies. This requires him to work extensively with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development, World Trade Center Utah, and the Governor's Office. Paul believes that at the core of his role is what he calls “coalition-building” - helping people and companies develop relationships with Utah.
As the Honorary Consul of Canada, Paul’s primary goal is to help connect Utahns and their business with their Canadian counterparts. Luckily, Utah is an appealing partner for Canadian businesses due to our strong economy and long-standing history. With new leadership in the Governor’s Office, Paul looks forward to continuing building strong connections between Utah and Canada.
SALT LAKE CITY -- S. George Simon brings a diverse background in economic development, trade relations, and product development to his position as the Honorary Consul to Hungary. Simon’s experiences span from time as a performer with a Hungarian folk dance group to his current role as Managing Director of Q Life Sciences. Simon’s academic background includes an undergraduate degree in finance with a minor in business economics, and he is a graduate of the International Business Management Program at UCLA.
Simon hails from Los Angeles, California but he has lived in Salt Lake City for the past 20 years since moving to the valley to work for Myriad Genetics. It was during his time with Myriad that Simon negotiated and constructed one of the largest start-up financings in the biotech industry, Myriad’s $82 million joint venture with Hitachi and Oracle. Even before this historic deal, Simon made lasting contributions to each sector he found himself working within. Simon’s first position out of college was as a marketing officer for the New Zealand Consulate-General, promoting New Zealand exports to the United States. This job was the opposite of what Simon envisioned as he originally aspired to work with the International Trade Administration of the U.S. Department of Commerce. Ultimately, however, this experience led him to take a job at the Canadian Consulate General in LA, where he worked for seven years. It was during those years that Simon found himself gravitating toward the blossoming biotech industry. This interest led him to prepare and publish an important white paper about biotech’s influence on trade and economic development between Canada and the U.S.
Though he calls both California and Utah home, Simon’s connection with Hungary runs deep and he is proud of his Hungarian heritage. Simon’s parents are from Hungary, and Simon is fluent in the Hungarian language. In fact, when Simon started kindergarten in the U.S., he didn’t speak a word of English. This language and heritage is something he has passed down to his four children as well, three of whom hold Hungarian citizenship. Simon and his family maintain their connections to fellow Hungarians by hosting annual parties and other events at their home, creating a community that includes not only Hungarian ex-pats but also business colleagues and other friends. This community-building began even before Simon was appointed as an Honorary Consul. In 2002, Simon was asked to host a reception for the Hungarian Winter Olympic team. Hosting the Olympic athletes and the former U.S. Ambassador to Hungary in his home is a memory that Simon treasures.
As the Honorary Consul to Hungary, Simon’s primary goal is to connect Hungarians in Utah with helpful resources. Simon, with assistance from his wife, runs the consulate office out of his home. Due to Schengen treaty regulations, they can no longer process visas and passports. As a result, Simon primarily works on notarizing and authorizing signatures for Hungarians in Utah and connecting them with contacts and resources. Simon is dedicated to continuing this vital work of building strong connections between Utah and Hungary.
SALT LAKE CITY – Meet James T. Burton, Kirton McConkie shareholder and German Honorary Consul to Utah.
German is the third most common language spoken in the State of Utah according to Ben Blatt from Slate Magazine, and is included as an option for dual language immersion at two elementary schools in the state. Utah’s German ties date back to the mid-1800s when multiple Germans immigrated to Utah, including the renowned Karl G. Maeser, founder of Brigham Young University. Additionally, Utah is home to Christkindlmarkt-SLC, a well-known traditional German Christmas market held at This is the Place Heritage Park each December. Utah is also home to a German appointed and U.S. Department of State approved Honorary German Consul, James T. Burton. This appointment is an honor from Germany not only for Mr. Burton but also to the entire State of Utah which has built strong ties with the country.
Prior to Mr. Burton’s appointment as the German Honorary Consul to Utah, he participated in consular duties as the unofficial German Honorary Vice Consul to Utah. The former German Honorary Consul is Charles Dahlquist, who served as the first President of the Utah Consular Corps, a former National Commissioner for Boy Scouts of America and the former General Young Men’s President for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Mr. Dahlquist and Mr. Burton met each other at Kirton McConkie where Mr. Dahlquist is also a shareholder. Germany has a mandatory retirement age of 65 for diplomats, which was extended to 67 for Mr. Dahlquist so that he could personally have a hand in choosing the next German Honorary Consul to Utah. Mr. Burton was recommended by Mr. Dahlquist, and after careful consideration and an interview by the German Consul General, he was approved by the German Foreign Mission and U.S. State Department in 2014 to become the next German Honorary Consul to Utah. Mr. Burton values his relationship with Mr. Dahlquist so much that he even named his youngest son Charlie after him.
Mr. Burton’s family connection to Germany is generations deep. His grandfather served a mission in Germany for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Following this, he later served as the president to the Church’s European Mission twice, and while in this position ordained Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf as a missionary. Mr. Burton’s father followed in his grandfather’s footsteps by serving his own mission in German-speaking Switzerland, after having lived many years in Germany as a youth. Many of Mr. Burton’s family members, including one of his brothers and a brother-in-law, all served missions in Germany. Although he is not German himself, Mr. Burton grew up with a deep love for Germany and the German people. He was thrilled when his time came to serve a mission for his church and he was also called to serve in Germany.
One of the reasons that Mr. Burton enjoys his service as German Honorary Consul to Utah is because of the opportunity to stay connected to the country and people. Mr. Burton takes advantage of every opportunity to use his knowledge of the German language. He still practices German and speaks German with the 30-40 Germans who use the passport and other services of the German Honorary Consulate in Utah every month.
Even though his consulate office and legal office are in the same building, Mr. Burton takes care to ensure that he keeps his duties for his positions separate. However, he also realizes these positions don’t exist entirely independently. “Without Kirton McConkie,” he explained, “I couldn’t be a consul. They provide the assistance and office space to make this service possible. Kirton McConkie did the same for Charles when he was the German Honorary Consul before me. I want to thank them for their public service and support.”
Serving as the German Honorary Consul to Utah as well as the Vice-President to the Utah Consular Corps is time-consuming. Mr. Burton shares that consuls, such as himself, form the “necessary and valuable bridge” between their country of representation, the state, and various organizations. As a bridge, consuls are able to understand culture, languages, issues and willingly help those involved in the exchange to feel comfortable.
Utah is an appealing state for Germany and other countries to work with because of its strong economy and educated workforce – unemployment is low and Utah runs consistently fiscally in the black. Of course, the relationship is reciprocal: Germany is a strong partner for Utah because it is one of the largest economies and exporters in the world.
The designation of “Honorary Consul” might seem like a formality -- nominal in nature, an arcane diplomatic convention. However, Jonathon Tichy, Honorary Consul of the Czech Republic in Salt Lake City, thinks the title can be misleading: there is real, substantive work that goes into building relationships that connect Utah to the nations of the world. “It’s not just a fancy name to give somebody who’s been supportive of another country,” he explains. “It has substance to it.”
Originally from Utah County, Tichy grew up in Orem and graduated from Orem High School. In college, an international focus drove his studies: he has a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in public policy with an emphasis in international trade and foreign policy from BYU. After graduating with his Masters, Tichy leveraged his global savvy as a special State Department appointee stationed at the American Embassy in Prague, Czech Republic.
Tichy is of Czech descent, and he cites his family as his main connection to the country -- cousins and relatives still live in the Czech Republic and Slovakia. His in-country experience began with an LDS mission in the early 1990s followed by a year of work and graduate studies. Including his State Department assignment, Tichy has spent nearly eight years in the country.
While on State Department assignment in Prague, he worked as a political and economic advisor and senior staff aide (Chief-of-Staff) to the ambassador, assisting in speech writing and policy development and acting as a liaison to senior government officials at a critical time in Czech history. “Back in the 90s,” he remembers, “when a lot of the countries of Central and Eastern Europe were in the process of transitioning to democracy, there was a lot of activity going on -- we were trying to be supportive of the democratic forces in those countries and make sure that they could take root and build a firm foundation for the future.”
After finishing his State Department appointment in 2000, Tichy had plans of returning to the Foreign Service and continuing to work overseas. But sometimes, he noted, “life just kind of has a funny way of sending you in another direction.” Instead, Tichy decided to attend law school at BYU and then enter the job market, working as an international lawyer in Las Vegas and then in Salt Lake City. After a 13-year stint at a large firm in downtown Salt Lake City where he was head of the international and government relations practice group, Tichy went independent and now operates his own international firm, Envoy Legal and Consulting International.
As for his consular duties, Tichy feels his experience in international matters gave him a solid foundation for performing his consular duties. In 2008, Tichy helped organize a visit to Utah for the Czech Ambassador to the UN. During that visit, he remembers, “[the ambassador] realized how dynamic Utah was and came to believe that it would make sense for the Czech Republic to establish an honorary consulate here.” Shortly after the visit, Tichy was invited to begin the process of accreditation as the Honorary Consul and was officially installed in May 2010. Now, nearly a decade in to his services, he defines his responsibilities with a helpful acronym. The duties of an Honorary Consul, he says, can be explained by the “Three Cs”: Consular, Cultural and Commercial.
As a consular officer, Tichy assists Czech citizens in emergency situations. Whether it’s a lost passport, an injury, or legal trouble, the consul can help Czech citizens get the help they need and can replace and authenticate documents and work with local law enforcement and others. “The idea is to be that safety net for the Czech community, whether they are people who are living and working here, or people who are just visiting,” Tichy says. “My job is just to make sure that their rights are protected and observed and that they’re treated fairly in accordance with the law or to help them get any critical assistance they need while they are in Utah.”
It’s not all crisis mitigation and paperwork, though. Tichy also works closely with Utah’s vibrant Czech community to support cultural outreach and other activities throughout the state. From a successful Czech language school to a traditional annual Saint Nicholas program, Tichy helps to “promote the good name of the Czech Republic here in Utah.”
A highlight of this cultural outreach is the “Czech That Film” Festival, a travelling event that brings contemporary Czech films and award-winning directors to select venues around North America. The festival has been screening annually in Salt Lake City since 2011 and drawing enthusiastic audiences from both within and outside the Czech community. Tichy sees the festival as an important mark of a strong community. “When we started that program,” Tichy says, “they took the film tour to New York, Los Angeles, and a couple of other bigger cities. They didn’t really think a city the size of Salt Lake would be able to garner much interest in it.” This assumption, of course, was incorrect: Salt Lake has been one of the top cities every single year of the tour in terms of audience participation.
Finally, in the commercial sphere, Tichy looks for opportunities to promote trade between the Czech Republic and Utah by facilitating contacts and connections between Utah and Czech businesses. It’s a case, Tichy feels, that is not very hard to make: “When I deal with or consult with Czech companies or the Czech government,” he says, “I can talk about all of the great things happening in Utah, in terms of our strong economy, our hardworking people. I can get them interested in taking a serious look at Utah as a place where they might want to focus more resources and efforts or maybe expand their business. They see it as a good place to be when they come to America.”
Above all, Tichy sees the recognition of Honorary Consuls as an affirmation of Utah’s strengths. “Choosing to appoint an Honorary Consul in a state like Utah is basically a manifestation of the importance that country places on Utah as a strategic interest,” he explains. “They’re recognizing that Utah is a place where great things are happening, where there’s momentum. It's a credit to the state to have a consular corps that has as many members as it does.”
SALT LAKE CITY - Introducing Robert E. Mansfield, the Honorary Consul to South Korea. Honorary Consul to South Korea, Robert E. Mansfield, is a native of Cincinnati, Ohio. His relationship with South Korea began after graduating high school when he enlisted in the United States Army. Mansfield served in Korea between 1983 and 1984, following in his father’s footsteps, who served during the tail-end of the Korean War in 1953.
Mansfield has served as the Honorary Consul of South Korea for the past eight years, after the Honorary Consul of Ukraine, Jonathan Freedman, suggested that he should seek the opportunity. A graduate of the University of Utah’s Law School, Mansfield is an experienced commercial trial lawyer, and the skills from his profession transfer over to his role as a Honorary Consul. In particular, his expertise in negotiation and persuasion allow him to foster strong relations between Utah and South Korea.
In his time as Honorary Consul, Mansfield cites his advocacy for the Korean War memorial in Memory Grove Park as a special experience. Memory Grove Park, located near the Utah State Capitol, contains a memorial honoring the veterans who fought in the Korean War. This memorial featured a map of the East Sea, the body of water separating Japan and the Korean Peninsula, labeled as the Sea of Japan. The name of this sea is a very important issue to the Korean people: during the time Korea was occupied by Japanese soldiers, Japan sought to have the name changed and Korea was not in a position to defend the historic name. Mansfield was influential in getting the name on the memorial changed to the East Sea, making this the first and only such memorial to use the East Sea, rather than the Sea of Japan.
As Honorary Consul, Mansfield has several goals to foster relations between the US and South Korea. His first goal is to promote Korean culture in Utah. He helped form a group called Friends of Korea with the goal of promoting Korean culture in Utah by working closely with members of the Korean community. Another way he works with Korean expatriates living in Utah is through the Korea Federation. The Federation participates in the Utah Asian Festival each year in June. The festival strives to promote Asian culture, including those of all the Asian and Pacific Islander countries in Utah. In addition, Mansfield hopes to continue to act as a lobbyist for the country to ensure that the Korean community in Utah has more political sway by trying to get the Korean community to band together and speak out in a unified manner. He also has regular contact with the Consulate in San Francisco to promote issues important to Korea. His third goal regarding Utah-Korean relations is to promote trade between Utah and Korea. He has worked with Utah companies who are doing business in Korea to help solve any problems they may encounter and has held multiple seminars on doing business in Korea to promote this connection.