Lieutenant-General Rouleau assumes responsibilities of the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff

News release

July 15, 2020 – Ottawa – National Defence / Canadian Armed Forces

Today, a transfer of authority ceremony took place at National Defence Headquarters Carling in which Lieutenant-General Mike Rouleau assumed the responsibilities of the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff (VCDS), from Lieutenant-General Jean-Marc Lanthier who will be retiring after over 30 years of distinguished service to Canada. 

General Jonathan Vance, the Chief of the Defence Staff, presided over the ceremony in the presence of a small assembly of military and civilian members of the Defence Team.

Second in command of the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF), the VCDS is responsible for an array of functions ensuring that National Defence policy and strategic objectives are achieved. Accountable to both the CDS and the Deputy Minister of National Defence, the VCDS also governs National Defence headquarters and its related activities. 

Lieutenant-General Rouleau began his military career in 1985 as an artillery officer. Since then he has served equally between the Canadian Army, Special Operations Forces, and in strategic staff positions.

He becomes VCDS after serving as the commander of Canadian Joint Operations Command since June 2018.

Enrolling in 1989, Lieutenant-General Lanthier’s retirement concludes a career that has included six international deployments and two domestic operations, with command appointments that most recently included the Canadian Army and the VCDS. Lieutenant-General Lanthier has served his country with honour and distinction. 

Quotes

“I congratulate Lieutenant-General Rouleau on his appointment as Vice Chief of the Defence Staff.  I have no doubt he will bring a depth of experience to this very important position in the Defence Team.  I also want to convey my sincere thanks to Lieutenant-General Lanthier for his long distinguished service to Canada.  Furthermore, Canada owes a great debt to his family who too served alongside him throughout his career.”

The Honourable Harjit S. Sajjan, Minister of National Defence

“For more than three decades, Lieutenant-General Lanthier has dedicated his time, passion, and considerable talent, to serving our country in the Canadian Armed Forces. The leadership and determination he demonstrated as our Vice Chief of the Defence Staff was exemplary. Thank you for your service, my friend.

“Stepping into the role of Vice Chief of the Defence Staff is another accomplished officer, Lieutenant-General Rouleau. As second-in-command, he will provide the sage counsel and tenacity the Canadian Armed Forces will need to prevail against the threats and challenges facing Canada. To Lieutenant-General Rouleau and Lieutenant-General Lanthier, I wish you both the best of luck in your endeavours.”

General Jonathan Vance, Chief of the Defence Staff

“From his deeply ethical leadership, to his focused, collaborative work with Defence Team colleagues, LGen Lanthier has been a highly effective VCDS. He embraced his role as Defence Team Mental Health co-Champion, during which he directly contributed to reducing the stigma of talking about mental health at National Defence and the Canadian Armed Forces. I look forward to working closely with LGen Rouleau to further strengthen our one Defence Team and continue our important service to Canada during this complex time.”

Jody Thomas, Deputy Minister

“It is a great honour for me to lead as second in command of the Canadian Armed Forces: an institution I deeply respect; embodied by a military force and Defence Team that is second to none. I thank the Chief of the Defence Staff and the Deputy Minister for their confidence. I will do my part, serving this institution and its people in the best way I can to ensure we remain ready to answer the call, whether at home or abroad. I am honoured to be the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff and I will strive to build on the trust Canadians have in their CAF every day I serve in this post.”

Lieutenant-General Mike Rouleau, Vice Chief of the Defence Staff

“I am grateful for having had the honour to serve Canada in uniform for all these years, and I retire with nothing but pride and the utmost respect and admiration for the tremendous soldiers, sailors, aviators, and special operators who defend our great nation. Lieutenant-General Rouleau is a highly respected and experienced officer who will excel in the role of Vice Chief of the Defence Staff and I wish him and all members of the Defence Team success.”

Lieutenant-General Jean-Marc Lanthier

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Contacts

Floriane Bonneville
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of National Defence
613-996-3100

Media Relations Office
Department of National Defence
Phone: 613-904-3333
Email: mlo-blm@forces.gc.ca


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