The Canadian Armed Forces will be led by a woman for the first time in history. Lieutenant General Jennie Carignan will be appointed Chief of Defence Staff. This was announced by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

Since the establishment of this position in 1964, it has been held by 21 people, all of whom were men.

Jennie Carignan will be promoted to the rank of general and will replace the current Chief of Defence Staff, General Wayne Ayre, who is retiring from the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF).

The Prime Minister announced the upcoming appointment of Jennie Carignan, who is currently the Chief of Professional Conduct and Culture for the National Defence, on 3 July.

“I congratulate Lieutenant General Jennie Carignan on her upcoming appointment. Over the course of her career, her exceptional leadership, commitment to excellence and dedication to service have been a tremendous asset to our Armed Forces. I am confident that as Canada’s new Chief of Defence Staff, she will help Canada become stronger, safer and more prepared to meet global security challenges,” Trudeau said.

He noted that Carignan will be the first woman in the country’s history to lead the CAF. In her new role as Chief of Defence Staff, Carignan will oversee CAF’s day-to-day operations in Canada and around the world, while continuing to work to create an inclusive environment for our Armed Forces, the Prime Minister of Canada added.

Carignan’s military career with the Canadian Forces spans more than 35 years and includes command of two combat engineer regiments and the 2nd Canadian Division, where she led more than 10,000 soldiers and led crisis operations during the Quebec floods.

In 2008, Carignan became the first woman in CAF history to lead a combat unit. She was then deployed to Afghanistan. She also served in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Syria.

From 2019 to 2020, she led NATO’s mission in Iraq, helping to strengthen Iraq’s security institutions and forces to fight terrorism and stabilise the country.

In 2021, she was promoted to her current rank and for the past three years has served as the Head of the National Defence Professional Conduct and Culture Division.

Carignan has received numerous awards in recognition of her dedicated and exceptional service, including the Medal of Honour and the Distinguished Service Cross.

Source: The Gaze