Army, Air Force, and Navy Commanders announced

In a continued effort to revamp Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) culture, the 2022 CAF General and Flag Officer senior appointments have been selected through a revolutionized process.

The first 2022 CAF General and Flag Officer senior promotions and appointments were announced Thursday by the Chief of the Defence Staff. 

“The CAF’s requirement for General and Flag Officers is driven by the need to lead defence priorities at the institutional level, create and sustain a diverse and inclusive culture, and project leadership abroad,” stated a Department of National Defence press release. 

New Appointments Announced 

The appointments announced are as follows:

  • LGen. J.J.M.J. Paul will be appointed Commander Canadian Army in Ottawa.
  • MGen. S.R. Kelsey will be promoted to the rank of Lieutenant-General and appointed Deputy Commander Allied Joint Force Command Naples, in Naples, Italy, replacing Lieutenant-General J.J.M.J. Paul.
  • MGen.E.J. Kenny will be promoted to the rank of Lieutenant-General and appointed Commander of the Royal Canadian Air Force in Ottawa, replacing Lieutenant-General A.D. Meinzinger, who will retire from the Canadian Armed Forces.
  • RAdm.A.I. Topshee will be promoted to the rank of Vice-Admiral and appointed Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy in Ottawa, replacing Vice-Admiral C.A. Baines, who will retire from the Canadian Armed Forces.

Selection process

The CAF promotion selection process is evolving, according to DND, to reflect the CAF’s initiative to make significant changes to its internal culture.

All promotion candidates completed evidence-based character assessments, and a multi-rater (e.g., 360 degree) assessment was used as a confirmatory tool for candidates to be considered for promotion. The group of evaluators for the multi-rater assessments were a diverse group in order to “obtain a holistic perspective of the candidate’s leadership behaviours and effectiveness.”

Candidates also underwent interviews by a third-party outside of the DND and CAF that focused on personal experiences, self-awareness, past challenges, failures, and successes.

Brigadier-General Jocelyn Paul, photo by Corporal Lisa Fenton. Canadian Forces Support Unit (Ottawa) © 2017 DND-MDN, Canada SU06-2017-1456-001.

LGen. Jocelyn Paul

LGen. Jocelyn Paul was born and raised in the First Nations community of Wendake, Quebec, and is a member of the Huron-Wendat First Nation.LGen. Paul enrolled as a reservist and infantry officer in 1988 with Régiment du Saguenay and Régiment de Maisonneuve.

He joined the Regular Force in 1991 and has since then deployed to Croatia, Afghanistan, and Jerusalem. 

In addition, he has served as: 

  • Commander of the Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre, Wainwright, Alberta; 
  • command of Task Force Jerusalem (Operation PROTEUS); 
  • Chief of Staff (COS), Canadian Forces Intelligence Command;
  • Commander of 4th Canadian Division and Joint Task Force Central; Director-General International Security Policy.

He is currently serving as Deputy Commander Allied Joint Forces Command in Naples, Italy.

LGen. Paul was awarded the Meritorious Service Cross for the performance of his unit in Kandahar and the United States Legion of Merit Award for his service as Deputy of the US Security Coordinator (USSC) in Jerusalem. He is a graduate of the USMC Command and Staff College, the USMC School of Advanced Warfighting, and the Canadian Forces National Security Program.

Major General Eric Kenny. Photo by Cpl Angela Gore, Canadian Armed Forces Photo.

MGen. Eric Kenny

MGen. Eric Kenny joined the CAF in 1989 and graduated from the Royal Military College of Canada. He went on to complete pilot training at 15 Wing Moose Jaw in 1995 and was selected to fly the CF18.

During the course of his career, he has deployed numerous times and participated in multiple operations. He deployed to Aviano, Italy, twice to participate in Operation ECHO (Bosnia) and Operation ALLIED FORCE (Kosovo), where he took part in combat missions. He also served as the Deputy Director of the Air Operations Control Centre at the International Security Assistance Force HQ in Afghanistan. 

His deployed command tours include: 

  • Task Force Commander for Operation IGNITION in Iceland; 
  • Detachment Commander of the CF18s and C130HT/C150Ts in Trapani, Italy, where he took part in combat missions for Operation MOBILE (Libya); 
  • Commander Air Component Coordination Element in Poggio-Renatico, Italy, also for Operation MOBILE; and, 
  • Commander of ROTO 0 Air Task Force – Iraq for Operation IMPACT.
  • In July 2020, MGen. Kenny was appointed Commander 1 Canadian Air Division/Canadian NORAD Region.

Throughout his career, Major-General Kenny has accumulated 2,900 flying hours, 2,200 of them in the CF18. He is a graduate of the NATO Tactical Leadership Program, FWIC, Canadian Forces Command and Staff Program, USAF Air War College, USAF Combined Force Air Component Commander course, US CAPSTONE course, and has a Master of Defence Studies from RMC.

MGen. S.R. Kelsey

MGen. Kelsey joined the military in 1985 as a soldier with the Canadian Scottish Regiment. He has served in West Germany, the Balkans, Afghanistan, and Iraq.

MGen. Kelsey is a proud tanker and spent time with armoured reconnaissance and Leopard tank units in the 4th and 1st Canadian Mechanized Brigade Groups.

During the span of his career, he has served as: 

  • Director of Land Force Development, 
  • Commander Western Area Training Centre, 
  • Deputy Commander Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre, 
  • Director Armour, 
  • Commander of Canadian Force Base Kingston, 
  • Chief of Staff Combined Joint Force Land Component Command HQ in Iraq, and 
  • Army Director General Land Capability Development and Chief of Staff Strategic. 
  • MGen Kelsey was appointed Chief of Force Development in 2020 and is currently the Royal Canadian Armoured Corps’ Senior Serving. He is a graduate of the National Security Program, holds a Masters’s in Conflict Analysis, and has completed the Senior Executives in National and International Security program.
Rear-Admiral Angus Topshee, Commander Canadian Fleet Pacific, with Her Majesty’s Canadian Ship REGINA in the background, taken on C Jetty Her Majesty’s Canadian Dockyard, Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt, British Columbia on 10 April 2021. Photo by: Sailor First Class Victoria Ioganov. MARPAC Imaging Services

RAdm. Angus Topshee

RAdm. Topshee joined the CAF in 1990 as a cadet at the Royal Military College of Canada. Upon graduation, he was awarded the Canada Memorial Scholarship and, in 1996, earned a Masters of Literature in Strategic Studies from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

He started MARS training in 1996 and joined his first ship, HMCS Winnipeg, in 1997. 

During the course of his career, he has served as: 

  • Navigating Officer, Operations Officer, and Combat Officer on Canada’s Pacific coast,
  • Executive Officer of HMCS St. John’s in 2006 and then HMCS Toronto in July 2007; 
  • Directorate of Maritime Strategy at NDHQ in Ottawa. 

In 2009, he was appointed as Commander of HMCS Algonquin and was deployed to Afghanistan as part of NATO Training Mission-Afghanistan. 

In July 2018, RAdm Topshee returned to the West Coast to take command of the Canadian Fleet Pacific. Then, in April 2021, he was promoted to his current rank and has been serving as Maritime Forces Pacific and Joint Task Force Pacific.

The press release noted, “further promotions, appointments, and retirements will be announced once they’ve been confirmed.”

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Cyndi Mills - Owner | Publisher CMF Magazine

Admittedly the Queen of Typos, Cyndi Mills strives for none, but one or two always seems to slip in. She apologizes! Over the last 29 years Cyndi has had the opportunity to move around the country with her husband, Scott and their four children. Having lived in Chilliwack, Edmonton, London, and Petawawa. She stumbled into the world of journalism by accident – looking for a career that could give her the flexibility to work from home to be with her children and support her husband's military career. Cyndi is also a military parent as her two oldest children are in the military. Raising her third and fourth teenagers, she tries to keep sane by walking, gardening, writing, and spending time with her family while running Canadian Military Family Magazine.

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