March 2020 - Vice Chief of the Defence Staff – Lieutenant-General M. N. Rouleau, CMM, MSC, CD

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  • The VCDS has two mandates:
  • Providing strategic direction across the Defence Team and monitoring DND/CAF progress in achieving key priorities.
  • Commanding a diverse group of 18 organizations within Canada and abroad that support the entire DND/CAF including:
    • Security, safety, cadets, Reserve Force, capability development, NATO, NORAD, defence liaison, establishment, conflict management, sexual misconduct, military police, National Capital Region administration.

Key facts

Total Employees: ~14,241

  • 3693 Regular Force, 890 outside Canada
  • 200 Primary Reservists (full & part-time)
  • 700 Employees of the Public Service
  • 9668 Reserves Supporting Cadets

Budget: $420,277,907

  • $217,912,613 – Cadets & Junior Rangers
  • $77,786,121 – Operations & Maintenance
  • $47,947,441 – Civilian Salary Wage Envelope
  • $19,698,796 – Primary Reserve Salary
  • $45,348,700 – Carling Campus Project

Primary location(s):

  • National Defence Headquarters (Pearkes & Carling), Uplands, Bases/Wings;
  • 69 Countries: United States (Colorado Springs, Washington), United Kingdom (London), Belgium (Brussels), Germany (Niederheid), Italy (Naples), France, Australia, Korea, etc.

Key Partners


  • Minister of National Defence Office
  • Deputy Minister Office + Associate Deputy Ministers
  • Chief of Defence Office and Strategic Joint Staff
  • ADM(Policy), Judge Advocate General
  • Commanders (CAF Formations & DND senior officials)
  • Ombudsman


  • Central Agencies
  • Public Services and Procurement Canada, Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada
  • Public Safety and Portfolio
  • Transport Canada
  • North Atlantic Treaty Organization, North American Aerospace Defence Command, United Nations
  • Global Affairs Canada and Foreign Embassies in Ottawa
  • Five Eyes Military Partners: Australia, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, and the United States

Top issues for Vice Chief of the Defence Staff

Implement the Defence Services Program (DSP)

  • To date, 66 Capital Projects made it through the various phases to close out, with 230 of the 333 files, or 69% of the total Defence Policy Capital Projects either in Implementation or Complete.
  • DND will seek project authorities for more than 40 capital projects between now and end of Fiscal Year 2021/22.
  • In the 5-year period from Fiscal Year 2017/18 to Fiscal Year 2021/22, it is estimated that Capital Spending will utilize approximately $16 Billion dollars on a cash basis from the Capital Investment Fund.

Force Mix and Structure Design

  • Objective: To design a Canadian Armed Forces that is fit-for-purpose to conduct concurrent operations and is relevant.
  • The Chief of Force Development  and key stakeholders continue validation of Force Employment demand and supply analyses to understand risks and option space for structural changes (Phase 1).
  • Analyze the impact of Phase 1 results on the supporting Force Generation and Institutional structures (Phase 2 & 3).
  • Begin implementing structural changes to address gaps or risks.

Operation HONOUR

  • Established in 2015, Op HONOUR is the CAF’s mission to eliminate sexual misconduct in the Canadian military.
  • Currently developing a Unified Policy.
  • Office of the Auditor General's Management Action Plan sets several deliverables due 1 October 2019:
    • Operation HONOUR Performance Measurement Framework;
    • Canadian Armed Forces Operation HONOUR Campaign Plan;
    • Duty to Report Working Group Recommendations.
  • Closely monitoring the Heyder-Beattie settlement implementation as it relates to this file.

Complete Move to National Defence Headquarters (Carling)

  • Complete move of 9,300 DND employees & military members by 30 March 2020.
  • From Nov 2019 to March 2020 this will entail: Delivery of Building 2, Pavilion and Building 10 with an approximate capacity of 2,500 employees.
  • Remain within the Project fit-up of final moves budget of $537 Million.
  • Schedule is currently extremely tight with risk of minor slippage into April 2020.

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