Home Community Barrie CFTDC Appoints HCol Helen Peirce in Investiture Ceremony

CFTDC Appoints HCol Helen Peirce in Investiture Ceremony

HCol Pearce speaking at the Waterloo Officers Mess for the CFTDC Honorary Colonel Investiture Ceremony (Caleb Hooper/Citoyen Borden Citizen)

CFB Borden’s CFTDC welcomed HCol Helen Peirce to the unit and recognized her unique skillset in improving education for all

On 10 April 2024, the Canadian Forces Training Development Centre (CFTDC) welcomed former reporter and educator, Honorary Colonel Helen Pearce to the unit in an appointment ceremony at the Waterloo Officers Mess.

With a diverse career in radio news reporting for 10 years and teaching journalism and communications across Canada and internationally for 12 years, HCol Pearce’s work is dedicated to improving the education of students by utilizing technology and creativity.

To ensure her transition into the Honorary Colonel role was welcoming and that all in attendance better understood HCol Pearce’s qualifications and mission, CFTDC Commanding Officer, Commander Julie Desroches addressed all in attendance, praising HCol Pearce for her innovation.

“HCol Pearce truly represents core values of the Department of National Defence such as respect, inclusivity and excellence,” Cdr Desroches said. “Her wise guidance and advice can be carried as learning, education and acknowledgement and will serve as inspiration and motivation in CFTDC.”

Cdr Desroches speaking at the Waterloo Officers Mess for the CFTDC Honorary Colonel Investiture Ceremony (Caleb Hooper/Citoyen Borden Citizen)

Cdr Desroches also spoke about the challenges that are currently facing education and how herself and HCol Pearce aim to address them together.

“In discussions with HCol Pearce, we recognize that we share similar challenges such as the importance of digital literacy technology and education, needing to establish practice and regulations around AI, how to better support students with difficulties and how to prepare instructors to use a variety of strategies to meaningfully engage students, while providing the highest quality of education to prepare them for the realities of the workplace,” said Cdr Desroches.

Commander Desroches and HCol Pearce signing the Appointment Certificates (Caleb Hooper/Citoyen Borden Citizen)

HCol Pearce addressed the crowd following Cdr Desroches, sharing how she was honoured to represent CFTDC and thankful for her family, colleagues and friends who have supported her throughout her career.

“There’s one other family member I’m thinking very much of today and my dad was a very proud member of the RCAF… He took off in planes pretty regularly and would fly around excellently, but the landings, not so much,” HCol Pearce said, chuckling. “After a couple of spectacular landings, [his superiors] said to him: ‘Now that you’re a pilot, we think you’ll be a really good navigator.’”

HCol Pearce’s father was a navigator during D-Day and she recalled a story he told of getting lost flying over the English Channel, thinking that he had made a miscalculation. To his surprise, the body of water was so heavily populated by ships and vessels that he mistook it for land.

The signing of the Appointment Certificate by Cdr Desroches and HCol Pearce followed, solidifying a commitment to developing knowledgeable and skillful members.

“I can assure that you are the right person for this role,” Cdr Desroches daid. “Congratulations again on this investiture as an Honorary Colonel. CFTDC staff and students are fortunate to have a leader such as you…”

To close out the ceremony before the departure of the new Honorary Colonel and Presiding Officer, Chaplain Captain Antony Werunga gave a blessing of the troops.

Chaplain Capt Antony Werunga giving a blessing of the troops/benediction to conclude the investiture ceremony (Caleb Hooper/Citoyen Borden Citizen)

“May this moment together bring us joy and hope and what we do to bring us a sense of purpose and accomplishment,” Capt Werunga said. “Blessings upon the Honorary Colonel Pearce and her family, CFTDC members, CFB Borden and the entire military family.”

By: Caleb Hooper