New CFB Halifax Base Chief

CPO1 Lee Brown (Left), outgoing base chief, signs over appointment to CPO1 Dave Steeves (Right), incoming chief, with Capt (N) Paul Forget (Centre) as Presiding Officer during the Change of Appointment ceremony at CFB Halifax on June 22.
Photo: OS John Iglesias, FIS Halifax 

CFB Halifax welcomes new Base Chief

By Virginia Beaton,
Trident Staff

CPO1 David Steeves became the new Base Chief for CFB Halifax during a Change of Appointment ceremony on Thursday, June 22.

During the ceremony, which took place in the TEME Vehicle Bay in Bldg WL 57, CPO1 Steeves accepted the ceremonial drill cane from Capt(N) Paul Forget, Base Commander, and outgoing Base Chief, CPO1 Lee Brown.

“In this technological age, it seems like it should be the ceremonial handing over of the BlackBerry,” joked Capt(N) Forget.

In his farewell address, CPO1 Brown took the opportunity to thank friends and colleagues for their comradeship during his career, especially during his three years as Base Chief.

CPO1 Brown acknowledged TEME, first for their cooperation in having the ceremony in the TEME Vehicle Bay, and also for allowing him to occasionally bring DND staff cars into the bay to wash them, for what he referred to as “therapy.” In stressful times, CPO1 Brown stated, “there’s nothing like bringing in a dirty car, washing it, vacuuming the inside, making it all clean again.”

He also thanked personnel ranging from Base Chief of Staff Wayne DiPersio, to the chaplains, the MFRC, and all of his fellow Chief Petty Officers.

The ceremony also was a chance for CPO1 Brown to share four axioms that he had learned over time, from sources ranging from RAdm (retd’) Pat Finn, to a US Navy Seal.

First, said CPO1 Brown, “You can’t lead from behind a desk.” Second, “Humans are more important than hardware.” Third, “The Sergeant Major eats last.” And finally, “Talking ain’t doing.”

These axioms provide a solid guide for the military life, CPO1 Brown emphasized.

Capt(N) Forget thanked CPO1 Brown for his many years of service, observing “The dedication of this person to the Canadian Armed Forces…I haven’t met many people like him.”

Capt(N) Forget also welcomed CPO1 Steeves. “We’re looking forward to leading the Base together.”

CPO1 Steeves, who comes to CFB Halifax after two years as the AJAG(A) Chief, thanked CPO1 Brown for his help during the transition, and Capt(N) Forget for his reception into the Base’s command team. CPO1 Steeves also thanked his mother and his family for their support.

He pointed out that the front row consisted of a group of young Leading Seamen and Master Seamen, most of whom he had served with in HMCS Athabaskan.

“I bumped some senior people out of the row because it was important that these sailors be here.”

Expressing his enthusiasm for the job that lies ahead, CPO1 Steeves noted he was a strong supporter of Op HONOUR.

“Be nice to each other, and take care of each other.”