12 Wing Commander

Colonel Patrick MacNamara

Colonel Patrick MacNamara

Colonel Patrick MacNamara joined the military in 1990 and after attending both the Royal Roads Military College and the Royal Military College, graduated in 1994 with a Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering.

Upon receipt of Air Navigator wings in 1995, he was posted to 443 Maritime Helicopter Squadron (MHS) in Victoria where he was employed as a CH-124 Sea King Tactical Coordinator, Crew Commander and Standards Officer. While at 443 MHS, he deployed in various HMC ships including Regina, Calgary, Huron and Protecteur. 

Selected for the Aerospace Systems Course in 2001, Colonel MacNamara proceeded to Winnipeg for one year and then on to National Defence Head Quarters in Ottawa where he was employed in various roles within the Directorate of Air Requirements. 

In 2007, he was selected for the Joint Command and Staff Program in Toronto where he earned a Masters in Defence Studies. 

Returning to the Maritime Helicopter Community in 2008, he was assigned to 423 MHS, where he served as the Air Detachment Commander in both HMCS Athabaskan and St-Johns.

In 2009, Colonel MacNamara was appointed Commanding Officer of the Helicopter Test and Evaluation Facility where he was charged with refining the acceptance testing for the CH-148 Cyclone and advancing the capabilities of the CH-124 Sea King.

In 2011 he was posted to Ottawa as a member of the Vice Chief of the Defence Staff Chief of Programme team in National Defence Head Quarters. In 2013, another move back to the west coast saw Colonel MacNamara appointed Commanding Officer of 443 MHS. Upon completion of his command tour in 2015, he was posted to the Netherlands as the J5 Air planner at NATO Joint Force Command-Brunssum.

Returning to Canada in 2018, he was assigned to the Strategic Joint Staff as the lead for Domestic and Asia-Pacific Strategic Operations which included the Canadian Armed Forces involvement in various natural disaster operations as well as the initial COVID-19 pandemic response. Promoted to his current rank in 2020, Colonel MacNamara assumed the role of Director General Coordination of the Strategic Joint Staff.