Vanguard Magazine

Aug/Sept 2014

Preserving capacity, General Tom Lawson, Chief of the Defence Staff, Keys to Canadian SAR

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"A lot of the things we are looking at in DADD – space, C4iSr, cyber, data fusion – are information. this is really what we are all about when you add some value to it – we fly information." – Colonel Ning Lew RCAF and drive a unified approach, encouraging others to chose solutions that are mutually acceptable. "Advocacy is very much part of the job," he says. "We're add- ing value to the work of others, not telling them what to do. I know many people don't find any value-added to coordination or facilitation, but the value-added here is a coherent path forward for the air force, and hopefully efficiencies and interoperability can be gained." In a large organization with competing priorities, DADD pro- vides a point of focus for activities that might otherwise be hidden behind the walls of numerous projects. "I used to be a project manager and I too had my own remit and schedule that I had to defend," Lew explains. "But often, as a team player and for the corporate good, if my project and other projects could all agree on similar sorts of solutions, then we could all satisfy our indi- vidual clients and help the organization. Having a 'DADD' who is trying to strongly encourage that kind of cooperation certainly helps." Areas of focus Lew might be the first director, but he credits Brigadier-General Stephan Kummel, then the director general of Air Force Develop- ment, with the vision to carve out a new area of expertise at time when spare colonels to lead it were few and far between. "He was very farsighted in doing this. Obviously, each of those areas is, in of itself, an enormous domain. In the Ca- nadian Forces, we have DGs for cyber and space and a directorate for joint C4ISR and much of the work is being done within Material Group. But in creating DADD, he wanted to give those things a dedicated home within the air force. We have these expensive sensors and other enabling technologies, but we can't leverage them unless we have some way of getting the information to the commander in near-real time. And because these are often ideas rather than something you can touch, sometimes it is a difficult sell." With a modest staff, Lew has had to be selective in where he focuses the directorate's efforts. C4ISR rose naturally to the top thanks to the work of Lieutenant-Colonel Chris Grandy, who conducted a survey of existing capabilities, projects and ac- tivities, including research and development initiatives, across the air force and the wider CF. The resulting document has become a de facto C4ISR strategy, though Lew admits he's had to develop a more concise version of highlights to avoid intimidating others when it lands on their desk with a thud. "I can't take any credit for any of this," he says. "LCol Grandy came from the Strategic Plans Directorate where he was writing this document. They were just putting the finishing touches on it when I arrived, but I immediately recognized its value as a way ahead and the fact that the much of its value was sort of hidden." (Grandy has now turned his attention to some of the specifics of C4ISR as they relate to air force intelligence needs and projects such as RIFL2E [Radar and Imaging for the Land/Littoral En- vironment].) A Air dEvEloPMEnT AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2014 17

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