Our People

The men and women of the Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) and their civilian colleagues are the RCAF’s greatest strength, the heart of the institution and the foundation upon which the RCAF’s future is built. They are extraordinary and professional, capable of accomplishing great things, setting standards of quality that are respected around the world. Day after day, night after night they contribute directly and indirectly to the delivery of air and space power for our nation.

Our airmen and airwomen are guided and inspired by the achievements of those who have served in the Air Force throughout its history.

Here are some of their stories.

In a dirt field, two firefighters in full gear drag a flowing hose from a fire engine toward smoking pieces of metal.

Our people: Lieutenant Jenson Gilby

RCAF Lieutenant Jenson Gilby makes a natural career choice in moving from Platoon Chief of the 12 Wing Fire Department to Construction Engineering Officer.
March 20, 2020

A man wearing an olive green flight suit sits in the cockpit of a helicopter.

Our people: Captain David He

“I feel privileged to be a part of this community at such a rare and exciting time,” says 443 Maritime Helicopter Squadron pilot Captain David He.
March 18, 2020

In a large, high-ceilinged hangar and maintenance facility, a woman wearing a disruptive pattern uniform with a flag patch on her shoulder sits at a desk with computers and screens.

Our people: Master Corporal Vicky Fortin

“Being a good leader is so important to me,” says 12 Wing Financial Services Administrator Master Corporal Vicky Fortin; she is mentoring a Private in her section, and wants to be the best example she can be.
March 13, 2020

A woman wearing a disruptive pattern uniform, and gloves and a cap, works on the rotor mechanism of a helicopter.

Our people: Corporal Caylen Dorrington

As an Aviation Systems Technician at 12 Wing Shearwater, Nova Scotia, Corporal Caylen Dorrington enjoys her work, and shares that enjoyment as she passes her skills on to new techs learning the trade.
March 11, 2020

A black-and-white photo of six uniformed women standing in a row with their arms around each other’s waists, looking up.

We have come a long way

International Women’s Day is an opportunity to celebrate the great accomplishments of women today, but also those of women who paved the way for the generations that followed them.
March 6, 2020

A black-and-white photo of six uniformed women standing in a row with their arms around each other’s waists, looking up.

We have come a long way

International Women’s Day is an opportunity to celebrate the great accomplishments of women today, but also those of women who paved the way for the generations that followed them.
March 6, 2020

A vintage black and white photo of a woman in operational flying dress speaking into a microphone held by a man wearing a sports jacket.

Grace MacEachern, para-belle: An RCAF pioneer

Pilot Officer Grace MacEachern was a pioneer for women in a revolutionary time for women's roles and rights. As a para-belle in the Canadian Armed Forces in the 1950s, she blazed a trail both for women and for the Royal Canadian Air Force.
March 5, 2020

In a black-and-white photograph, two young men in uniform sit on the leading edge of the wing of a vintage propeller aircraft, and two more stand in front of the wing.

Junius Lyman Edward Hokan: An extraordinary RCAF officer

Pilot Officer Junius Hokan was 20 when he died, but during his service he broke the race barrier barring Black-Canadians from serving in the RCAF, was an accomplished fighter pilot, and invented a navigation device that drew the attention of Great Britain’s air ministry.
February 26, 2020

A black and white photo of a black man wearing a shirt and tie, and a uniform jacket with wings.

Eric Watts, a natural leader

When Eric Victor Watts enlisted in the RCAF on May 10, 1939, technically, he should not have been allowed to join. Nevertheless, he proved to be a natural leader.
February 19, 2020

In a black-and-white photograph, a Black man wearing a uniform stands with his hands in his pockets in front of a large memorial displaying statues of men in uniforms.

Recruits of Choice

The excellence of Black Canadians recruited to the RCAF during and after the Second World War—even before Blacks were officially allowed to join the Air Force—is reflected in their achievements during and following their military service.
February 13, 2020

Date modified: