MARPAC Command Team
Commander Maritime Forces Pacific
REAR-ADMIRAL GILLES COUTURIER, OMM, CD
Rear-Admiral Couturier joined the Navy in 1983 and has served in ships of both the east and west coast fleets. During his first tour in Esquimalt, he had the opportunity to work closely with the US Navy, including a deployment as the Operations Officer for USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN Battle Group for RIMPAC 2000.
Rear-Admiral Couturier commanded HMCS FREDERICTON from 2005 to 2007. In 2006, FREDERICTON was deployed to the coast of Africa for Operation CHABANEL, a RCMP operation that resulted in the seizure of 22.5 tonnes of hashish bound for the east coast of Canada. As the Captain of FREDERICTON, he also had the opportunity to sail the ship to Toronto, Hamilton, Montreal and Quebec City to allow Canadians in this part of our country the opportunity to see their navy first-hand.
Following his tour, he was transferred to Ottawa and appointed Executive Assistant to the Chief of the Defence Staff. Back in Esquimalt, he assumed Command of Maritime Operations Group Four. Rear-Admiral Couturier was the Maritime Component Commander for OPERATION PODIUM from June 2008 until the end of the Vancouver 2010 Olympics. In this role, he oversaw the navy’s support to the RCMP-led Integrated Security organization. After a stop in Ottawa where he fulfilled the function of Director General Maritime Strategic Management and team leader for the Naval Transformation Planning Team, he was assigned to US Central Command in Tampa, Florida, where he held the appointment of Deputy Director J5 responsible for Building Partner Capacity and Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction. He then came back to Ottawa, working in the Strategic Joint Staff as the Director General of Plans, and then as the Director General International Security Policy within the Assistant Deputy Minister (Policy) group.
During the summer of 2014 Rear-Admiral Couturier performed the duties of Maritime Component Commander for RIMPAC 2014, the largest maritime exercise in the world that took place off the coast of Hawaii and included 22 nations, 47 ships and over 20,000 participants. He has now returned to Esquimalt, and assumed command of Maritime Forces Pacific/Joint Task Force Pacific on July 14, 2015.
Rear-Admiral Couturier, now a wiser referee, still has a passion for our national sport and attempts to put the blades on as often as he can. He also enjoys a run on the Galloping Goose Trail at a pace that allows many to follow.
Maritime Forces Pacific Chief Petty Officer
CHIEF PETTY OFFICER FIRST CLASS M. FELTHAM, MMM, CD
A native of Corner Brook, NL CPO1 Feltham enrolled in the Canadian Forces in September 1983 as a Naval Signalman. After completing basic training in Cornwallis NS and initial trades training in Esquimalt BC he was posted to his first operational unit HMCS ANNAPOLIS in Halifax NS.
During his career, CPO1 Feltham served in various fleet units including HMCS ANNAPOLIS, HMCS ASSINIBOINE, HMCS PRESERVER, HMCS IROQUOIS, HMCS FREDERICTON (Yeoman), HMCS ATHABASKAN (Yeoman, Senior Naval Communicator) and HMCS HALIFAX (Combat Chief). CPO1 Feltham also served in the following staff positions, Communications Instructor - Canadian Forces Fleet School Halifax, Fleet Personnel Shortage Coordinator - MARLANT HQ N11, and Command Organization and Establishment Coordinator at Maritime Staff HQ in Ottawa, during this posting he was also the Acting Occupational Manager for the Naval Communication occupation.
In 2006, then CPO2 Feltham was appointed as the Unit Chief/Chief Communications Yeoman for Standing NATO Maritime Group One, based out of Northwood UK during Canada’s command year of the NATO Squadron. On completion of this tour in 2007 CPO1 Feltham was promoted to his current rank and returned to NDHQ as the Career Manager for the Naval Communicator occupation. In July 2008, CPO1 Feltham was appointed as Coxswain of HMCS MONTREAL. In 2010 he attended second language training at CFB Shearwater, following which he was appointed as Fleet Chief Petty Officer, Canadian Fleet Atlantic in July 2011.
CPO1 Feltham was appointed Formation Chief Maritime Forces Pacific in July 2014
Commander Canadian Fleet Pacific
CAPTAIN(N) J.B. ZWICK, CD
Captain (N) Jeff Zwick joined the Canadian Forces in 1989 as a Direct Entry Officer, having previously received his Bachelor of Arts Degree in History from the University of British Columbia.
After initial naval officer training, he joined HMCS ALGONQUIN as the Above Water Warfare Officer in 1993. In 1996, he attended the Operations Room Officer course and subsequently returned to HMCS ALGONQUIN as the Combat Officer.
In 1999, he was appointed the Weapons Officer for the Canadian Pacific Fleet where he was promoted to Lieutenant Commander. In 2001, he was appointed the Staff Above Water Warfare Officer for the Commander of the Standing Naval Force Atlantic (SNFL). While with SNFL, he participated in OPERATION ACTIVE ENDEAVOUR, in support of NATO Article 5 operations against terrorism in the Mediterranean. He then returned ashore to attend the Canadian Forces Command and Staff College in Toronto in 2002, where he received his Masters degree in Defence Studies.
In 2003, he was appointed J5 Maritime Plans in the Canadian Forces Joint Operations Group (CFJOG) in Kingston. While with the CFJOG, he led the Consular Planning Assistance Team during OPERATION HELIX, the Non-Combatant Evacuation of over three hundred people from Haiti. As well, he was a member of the Theatre Activation Team for OPERATION HALO, the operation to assist the United Nations sanctioned multinational force in bringing stability to Haiti.
In 2004, he was appointed Executive Officer of HMCS TORONTO and joined the ship in the Arabian Gulf during OPERATION ALTAIR while TORONTO was integrated into the USS GEORGE WASHINGTON Carrier Battle Group. OPERATION ALTAIR is the Canadian Forces maritime contribution to the U.S. led coalition campaign against terrorism known as OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM.
In 2005, he was promoted to Commander and joined the naval staff in NDHQ as the Senior Staff Officer for Fleet Management, Policy and Readiness. In this position, his duties included oversight of Canadian Naval policy and readiness issues for Above Water Warfare, Under Water Warfare, Seamanship and Navigation.
Commander Zwick was appointed Commanding Officer of HMCS MONTREAL in June 2007. While in Command, HMCS MONTREAL participated in OPERATION CARIBBE, providing assistance to coalition counter narcotics operations in the Caribbean. During this operation MONTREAL provided direct support in the seizure of the MV AGENMEMON which was carrying 4.3 metric tonnes of cocaine.
In 2009, Cdr Zwick completed second language training in Shearwater. In 2010 he was promoted to Captain (N) and is now serving as the Director of Transformation and Strategic Planning in Ottawa.
Base Commander Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt
CAPTAIN(N) S.M. WADDELL, MSM. CD
Captain(N) Steve Waddell was raised in Temagami, Northern Ontario and joined the Royal Canadian Navy in 1990. A mariner at heart, most of his career has been at sea; he conducted several operational deployments to the Persian Gulf, Arabian Sea, Adriatic Sea and the waters off the Horn of Africa and Korean peninsula. Missions included United Nation sanctions enforcement against Iraq and the former Yugoslavia, counter-terrorism operations in the Gulf region and piracy disruption patrols in the Indian Ocean. Highlights included circumnavigating the globe with Her Majesty's Canadian Ship (HMCS) Calgary as the ship's navigator, serving as a staff officer with a deployed U.S. Carrier Battle Group, and commanding the frigate HMCS Fredericton on a counter-piracy mission off the coast of Somalia.
Captain(N) Waddell has occupied several staff positions, including coastal tours as Navigation Instructor at the Naval Officer Training Centre, and as Operations Officer with Sea Training Pacific. Following his frigate command, he transferred to Ottawa where he served as the Director of Naval Strategy with the Navy Staff. On promotion to his current rank, he was appointed Deputy Chief of Staff (Operations) at Canada Command – now Canadian Joint Operations Command - where he directed national-level joint operations from the Caribbean to the Arctic.
Following his joint tour, Captain(N) Waddell went on to serve as an advisor in the Chief of the Defence Staff Initiative Group before taking up studies at the United States Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island. He assumed his current position as Base Commander Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt on July 30, 2014.
Captain(N) Waddell holds a Bachelor's Degree from the University of Manitoba, a Master's Degree from King's College London, U.K. and a Diploma in National Security Affairs and Strategic Studies from the United States Naval War College. A fan of most forms of music, he wishes he was better at playing his electric bass but is content, along with his wife, to admire the growing musical talents of their two children.