The Communications and Electronics Association Directors and Advisors
President – John Leech
Retired in Ottawa from the CAF in June 1997 as a Maj Gen after a 33-year career in Army operations, personnel policy and communications-electronics. Postings to Europe and Egypt added variety to the mostly Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec circuit.
Career milestones include:
– Royal Roads and RMC, graduating in 1964, commissioned in The Royal Canadian Corps of Signals;
– Graduated from Canadian Army Staff College and National Defence College;
– Commanded QGET 5 GBC and CFCC;
– Service with US, UK and NATO forces; awarded CMM in 1993
Worked as a consultant for AFCEA and remains involved in volunteer work for environmental protection and at St. Helen’s Anglican Church in Ottawa.
Vice President – Ron Holdway
Ron Holdway served 25 years in the Canadian Forces, including his first five years as a student at CMR from where he graduated in 1972. His first posting was as BTelO at CFB St-Hubert, then still an Air Force Base but also the new home of the Army's Mobile Command (FMC) HQ.
Soon his most critical task was defining and implementing a facsimile network for the FMC Commander, who wanted just such a new technology tool for transmitting maps and orders to FMC’s brigades. Though he had been originally recruited into the RCAF, Ron soon became deeply immersed in the Army, and never made it back to the Air Force. FMC HQ was followed by a six-month tour in Cyprus with a British Army Signal Squadron, then postings to 1 Canadian Signal Regiment in Kingston, 2 RCR in Gagetown, Army Staff College in Kingston, and staff positions at CF Communications Command and NDHQ, before being sent to the UK Army’s Royal Military College of Science (RMCS) in Shrivenham.
Promoted to Major at RMCS, he returned to Canada as a procurement officer in the TCCCS Project Management Office. After several years at the TCCCS PMO, Ron accepted a generous early retirement package offered as part of a CF downsizing plan, that included an un-reduced pension, full benefits, and an extra year’s pay. His decision was made even easier by a lucrative job offer from an up-and-coming Canadian space company called COM DEV International.
Ron joined COM DEV’s marketing department with his primary objective to help the Company sell its space products and services to the Canadian and other government’s around the world. Twenty five years later, when COM DEV was sold to Honeywell, Ron, now age 65 and the company’s Vice President Government Relations, retired for the second time.
Today Ron keeps himself busy as a volunteer member of several Boards, running 1271480 Ontario – his own private investment business, and travelling the world with his wife.
Secretary – Vacant
Director, Business Planning – Charlie Cox
Charlie Cox served 22 years in the CF from 1969-1991, as a Tel Tech 223 and then in the CELE (Air) Classification. He also spent three years previously as a member of 3RHC Black Watch (Militia).
Charlie completed the UTPM program with a BEng (Electrical) from Acadia University / Technical University of Nova Scotia, and later a Master of Applied Science (Electrical Engineering) from the University of Ottawa. His postings included HQ AFCENT (Brunssum) and CFBs Cold Lake, Penhold and Shearwater. After retiring from the CF, with the rank of Major, Charlie worked for Ottawa area high-tech sector companies including Lockheed Martin Canada and NORTEL. His last 10 years of employment were back in DND as the Project Engineer on Night Vision and Counter-IED projects. Charlie retired fully in 2014, and remained in Ottawa.
Director – Jeff Holt
Jeff Holt served in the Canadian Forces (CF) for 38 years, retiring as a Colonel in 2004. Jeff entered the Royal Military College in 1966.
He graduated and was commissioned as a CELE Lt in 1970. In the 1970s he did three army field unit signals postings in Ontario. He completed the Technical Staff Course (1981), Shrivenham, UK and the CF Command and Staff Course (1984/5). He served in various command and staff positions including: CO, UN Disengagement Observer Force Signal Sqn, Syria (6 mo. in 1983/4); CO, 1 CMBG HQ and Signal Sqn, Calgary (1985-88); Section Head, D Sigs Engineering and Maint 2 (1990-92); CF Liaison Officer, US Army Comms and Elec Command, Fort Monmouth, NJ (1992-95); Deputy PM Engineering, TCCCS Project (1995-98); Director, Distributed Computing Integration and Engineering, Ottawa (2001-2); Chief of Combined, Joint Comms and Info Systems (CJ6), NATO Stabilization Force (SFOR) HQ, Sarajevo (2002); and, Director J6 Coord, NDHQ Ottawa (2002-4). Upon retirement from the CF Jeff provided consultant services to a variety of industry and DND project management organizations until 2015. Jeff has served as President, Ottawa Chapter C&E Association since 2007 and as member of the Board of Directors, C&E Association since 2016.
Director – Dave Whittier
Retired in 2019 after 38 years service to the CAF and the Branch.
Dave joined the Communication Reserve in 1981 and transferred to the Regular Force in 1986. He served 20 years as CELE (Land) and Signal Officer and transferred to the Army Reserve in 2006. During his time in uniform he served in eight different units, two formations, the Canadian Army Command and Staff College and the obligatory stint in Ottawa. He had the honour of commanding in both Reg and Res environments: 742 Signal Squadron in Edmonton and 39 Signal Regiment in Vancouver. Dave served overseas in Cyprus, former Yugoslavia, and Afghanistan.
Director – Hugh Janssen
Hugh Janssen retired in Ottawa from the CAF in May 2009 as a LCol after a 38+year career in Militia/Army [9+2 yrs], CIL [2 yrs] and Communications Reserve [25 yrs] in various Units across Canada from coast-to-coast-to-coast. Also worked for Telesat Canada [35 yrs] in Operations, Ops Manager, Western Sales Mgr & Sr Mgr Marketing also coast-to-coast-to-coast.
Director – Sean Sullivan
Sean Sullivan graduated from the University of Manitoba under the Regular Officer Training Plan and went on to serve 35 years as a Signal Officer and a member of the Communication and Electronic Branch.
He served the majority of his career in Army positions including having the honour and privilege of commanding 2 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group Headquarters and Signal Squadron including during the unit’s deployment on Rotation 0 of Operation Athena in Kabul Afghanistan in 2003. He was extremely fortunate to have unit command a second time as the Commanding Officer of 21 Electronic Warfare Regiment. He retired from the military in 2017 from the position of the Army G6, Director Land Command Information and Director of the Royal Canadian Corps of Signals. He is currently exploring the work of independent consulting in Ottawa.
VP Policy and Governance – Bob Martineau (email@example.com)
VP Heritage / Memorials – Tony Charters (firstname.lastname@example.org)
VP Reserves – Brian McDonnell (Interim)
VP Veteran Support – Vacant
VP Communications – Dave Whittier (email@example.com)
VP Honours and Awards – Lieutenant-Colonel Natalie De Roij (firstname.lastname@example.org)