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News | Feb. 6, 2014

Canadian Armed Forces Logisticians at NORAD celebrate 46th anniversary

By Capt. Jennifer Stadnyk NORAD and USNORTHCOM Public Affairs

Everything that the Canadian Armed Forces does, both at home and abroad, relies on a complex and integrated support system.  The Canadian Armed Forces has been doing this through an integrated Logistics Branch since 1968.

On February 4, 2014, approximately 35 Canadian and U.S. military personnel gathered together at the Colorado Room of the North American Aerospace Defense Command and United States Northern Command Headquarters to celebrate the 46th anniversary of the Canadian Armed Forces Logistics Branch.

"La logistique", translated in English to logistics, was coined from the term “Marechal General de Logis” (Quartermaster-General) and by Baron Antoine-Henri De Jomini.  Based principally upon his war campaign experiences as a staff officer for Napoleon, Jomini wrote his Precis de L'art de la guerre (Summary of the Art of War) in 1836. He divided the art of war into five branches:  strategy, grand tactics, logistics, engineering and tactics, and defined logistics, "as the practical art of moving armies". By this, he meant not merely the mechanics of transportation, but the staff work, administrative arrangements and even reconnaissance and intelligence involved in moving and sustaining organized military forces.

The formation of a single Logistics Branch aimed at supporting all three environments of the Canadian Armed Forces took place in 1968, and included transportation, supply, finance and food services. The birthday or official date of formation of the Canadian Armed Forces Logistics Branch is recognized on 1 February 1968, the date that the Canadian Armed Forces Reorganization Act was proclaimed.  The Royal Canadian Navy Supply Branch, Two Royal Canadian Army Corps, the Royal Canadian Ordnance Corps and four Branches of the Royal Canadian Air Force were integrated to form the Logistics Branch.

Comprised of Non-Commissioned Member and Officer occupations, there are slightly over 25 Canadian logisticians at NORAD and USNORTHCOM HQ.  This year’s celebration consisted of the traditional cake cutting ceremony with NORAD Deputy Commander, Lieutenant-General Alain Parent, Canadian Joint Operations Command J4, Colonel Chuck Mathé, NORAD and USNORTHCOM Deputy Director, Logistics and Engineering, US Colonel Chris Weimar, Commanding Officer of the Canadian Forces Support Unit (Colorado Springs), Lieutenant-Colonel Joann Montgomery and Corporal Pat Daguerre, the youngest Canadian logistician serving at NORAD.

The Branch looks forward to another 46 years, living by its motto: Servitium Nulli Secundus, translated as “Service second to none.”