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2006 Pillars Conference


Saturday Morning Session

"Another huge success" is how this years Pillars Conference is being described by many. Especially those that worked on the committee in organizing the event. The planning of this years conference began in December 2005 at RCSU(Pac). The committee headed by Chair Philip Sherwin, Vice President of the ACLCBC. Other committee members were Major Russ Lacey, Captain Al Harland, Captain Ted Usher, Captain Richard Grubb and Lieutenant Tim Townley from the Army side and from the League side were Roger Prouse, Executive Director ACLCBC, Louise Prouse Secretary ACLCBC, Cathy Bach 2812 Sponsoring Committee Chair and Brian Vernon President ACLCBC. The committee met each month from December 2005 in either Victoria or Vancouver until the week before the conference planning and strategizing on all the aspects of the conference.

In order that the conference be successful, many other people from both the ACLCBC and RCSU(Pac) over and above those mentioned previously, had to be involved. Their effort and support working behind the scenes was very much appreciated. We thank them for that!

The conference followed the basic format as in 2005. Sponsoring Committee members and military people arrived in Vernon from all points around BC. Approximately 160 delegates arrived in Vernon and met Saturday morning at the Prestige Inn to begin an interesting day of seminars and listening to a number of speakers from both the civilian League side of the Canadian Cadet Movement to the CF side.

The theme this year was "Integration". Getting more people from the community involved in the CCM, in particular, local community councils where army cadet corps are located.

The conference was officially opened after a cadet bugle call was made to muster all the delegates. The Chair of the conference, LCol (ret'd) Philip Sherwin welcomed the 160 delegates to the Prestige Inn in Vernon. After a few introductions and administrative issues, the mornings speakers began the session. All speakers for this morning session were only given a short time span to brief the group. The following is a list of speakers who addressed the conference:


Mrs. Cathy Bach - Chair of the Sponsoring Committee for 2812 RCACC Seaforth located in Surrey. Cathy spoke very briefly on the topic of her afternoon session, Direct Access Grants from Gaming Funds. This very important topic was of interest to many as cadet corps can obtain thousands of dollars from the government through gaming funds. Cathy's Power Point presentation is located above.

Councilor Dan Davies - City of Fort St John. With the theme of 'Integration', it was important for the delegates to hear from an elected official. Dan Davies wears a number of hats and one is as City Councilor for the City of Fort St John. Dan is also the ACICO for the northern region of BC. One of the points Dan made was how local City governments have web sites that normally include links or mentions community groups and clubs. Cadet corps should make sure they are listed or linked to City web sites for youth activities.

Ms. Valerie Gervais - Communications Assistant - Army cadet League of Canada - National Office Ottawa. Valerie arrived from Ottawa having never been to BC little alone Vernon. Valerie was there to represent the National Office of the Army Cadet League and gave a brief outline of what is happening from her point.

Colonel Robert Peron - Director of Cadets NDHQ. Col Peron is responsible for all three elements of cadets in Canada. He was allotted the most time in the morning session to fill everyone in on how the CCM is doing in Canada. Most would say they obtained some very positive and encouraging comments and statistics from Col Peron. League grants will increase and the CCM in Canada is not diminishing as some thought. Numbers indicate an increase of youth involvement across the board. Of interest, the number of available youth in our required age group have decreased. Col Peron's Power Point presentation will be linked above.

Major Alain Arseneault - Acting Director of Cadets 4. This was Major Arseneualt's second visit to Pillars. Again, he brought with him a very enlightening session on army cadets and the changes to the program. He spoke of new equipment acquisitions, new posters for training and much more.

LCol Allan Dengis - Commanding Officer Vernon Army cadet Summer Training Centre. This was the second visit by LCol Dengis to Pillars but first as the newly appointed CO of VACSTC. He follows in the steps of LCol Terry Kopan who just concluded fours years as CO of the camp. LCol Dengis gave a short presentation on the status of the camp and changes to the program for 2006.

Mr. Rod McLeod - Vernon Army Cadet Camp Alumni Association. This was Rod's second opportunity at Pillars to promote the VACC Alumni. His brief overview of the Association along with some tidbits of historical information captured the audience. The potential membership of the Association could be 60,000 or more considering how many cadets have gone through the camp since 1949.

Mr. Francois Arseneault - Official Historian - Army Cadet League of Canada. No one has as much enthusiasm, love and spirit for army cadet history in Canada than Francois. A former cadet from Alberta and a present member of the Army Cadet League of Canada, Alberta Branch, Francois is the web master for the Army Cadet History web site. A massive site and growing everyday. He is always seeking input and items.

Captain Isabelle Malczynski - SO Expeditions RCSU (Pac). Captain Malczynski gave a short overview of the Expedition Program for BC and the upcoming opportunities for cadets. She encouraged more corps to get their cadets involved in these events as sometimes spots go unfilled.

Major Jim Barrett - 2i/c 15th Field Artillery Regiment RCA Vancouver. Major Barrett was at the conference and speaking on behalf of the affiliated units who support the army cadet corps in BC. As a former cadet himself, Major Barrett is well aware of issues associated to cadet corps and their affiliated units. Major Barrett's encouragement to the other Primary Reserve and Regular Force units to keep the cadets active and support them when they can will go along way to promoting the CF to cadets.

Major Russ Lacey - SO2 Army RCSU (Pac). Major Lacey and his staff at the army office in Victoria are responsible for managing all 50 corps in BC and delivering the cadet program through it's corps officers and instructors. Major Lacey gave a short talk on his feelings about retention and recruitment for the cadet program.

Commander Rick Mountford - Commanding Officer RCSU (Pac). Cdr Mountford is responsible for all the three elemental cadet programs in BC. A program that involves 134 cadet corps, thousands of cadets and 600 hundred officers and instructors. He has a budget of $21 million dollars to do it with. A Regular Force naval officer with many years of experience at sea, Commander Mountford has adapted well to his newly (September 2005) appointed posting. A former cadet himself, Cdr Mountford has proven so far that he has high standards and expects a professional atmosphere amongst his officer's. He spoke about the need to ensure the working groups of the cadets corps (Sponsoring Committee, Affiliated Units and CIC) come together and work hard on recruiting, retention and the program to make it successful.

Awards - Several awards were handed out at this time. RCACC Efficiency Awards Gold Level were handed out to 3005, 2893, 2812, 2381, 1838, 2276, 1726 and a special No Award was handed to the CO of 2983, the newly appointed cadet corps in Fort Nelson. The Fort Nelson corps also received their corps Charter from Col Peron and MGen (ret'd) Brian Vernon, President of the Army Cadet League of Canada, BC Branch.

That concluded the joint morning session of the conference for the delegates. The military staff were bused up to the camp for lunch while the League people dined at the hotel.

Pillars Conference Chair, Philip Sherwin (Wayne Emde)


The Delegates (Wayne Emde)


The Delegates (Wayne Emde)


Valerie Gervais, Communications Assistant, Army Cadet League of Canada, National League (Wayne Emde)


Mr. (Major & Councilor) Dan Davies, City of Fort St John BC (Wayne Emde)


Mrs. Cathy Bach, Sponsoring Committee Chair, 2812 RCACC Seaforth Surrey BC (Wayne Emde)


Col Robert Perron, Director Cadets NDHQ (Wayne Emde)


Major Russ Lacey, RCSU (Pac) SO2 Army (Wayne Emde)


Major Jim Barrett, 2i/c 15th Field Regiment RCA (Wayne Emde)


Captain Isabelle Malczynski, SO Expeditions RCSU (Pac) (Wayne Emde)


Mr. Rod McLeod, Vernon Army Cadet Alumni Association (Wayne Emde)


LCol Allan Dengis, CO Vernon Army Cadet Summer Training Centre (Wayne Emde)


Major Alain Arseneault, A/Director Cadets 4, NDHQ (Wayne Emde)


Commander Rick Mountford, CO RCSU (Pac) (Wayne Emde)

Saturday Afternoon Session

Saturday afternoon was for the two groups attending the conference to break away on their own and discuss issues of importance to them. The military members headed up to H10 at Vernon Military Camp while the civilian side of the cadet movement, the Army Cadet League, stayed at the hotel.

The Army Cadet League of Canada, BC Branch held several sessions to assist their Sponsoring Committee members with their duties in supporting the function of a cadet corps in their home town. One of the sessions they received was an in-depth look at obtaining gaming funds from the Direct Access Program with the BC Lottery Corporation. Mrs. Cathy Bach gave an excellent overview on just how to obtain the funds through the application process. Mrs. Bach's power point presentation is located above. As well, the BC Branch held their Annual General Meeting and election of officers. For those results, have a look at who the new Board is on the Executive area of this web site. Other short meetings were held to discuss zone issues. All reports indicated that it was a successful afternoon for the delegates.

The military personnel met at the camp. The members of the Affiliated Units who were in attendance met on their own wit Major Barrett to discuss issues relevant to the support and policy for them. At the same time, corps CO's and representatives met with Major Lacey and his staff to discuss issues of interest with them. Again, all appeared to be a successful afternoon of open discussion.

The day ended with all delegates breaking off from their respective locations and heading for dinner and getting prepared for the evening social gathering at the Prestige Inn

Saturday Evening Social Gathering

This was the opportunity for all the delegates to gather and 'meet and greet'. A buffet style appetizer table was set up along with hotel staff mingling amongst the delegates with trays of hot hor'derves set the evening in motion. The League was able to run a very successful 'silent auction' throughout the evening as a result of some great gifts donated for the cause. In all, just over $1300 was raised from the auction. The highlight of the evening was the performance by the cadet bands. Cadets were brought to Vernon from lower mainland cadet corps to perform for the audience of delegates. Both pipe and military bands performed several selections during the evening. The performance was greatly appreciated by all.

Executive Director ACLBC, Mr. Roger Prouse addresses the League membership (below) in their afternoon sessions.  (Wayne Emde)


CIC Officer's from all corps in BC are meeting at VACSTC in the afternoon for a CO's conference. (Wayne Emde)

ACICO Capt Richard Grubb discusses corps issues with his CO's and representatives. (Wayne Emde)


Major Dan Davies ACICO Northern BC discuss issues with his corps representatives. (Wayne Emde)

Major Lorne Pleasants ACICO Vancouver discusses issues with his corps representatives. (Wayne Emde)


Major Jim Blomme ACICO Vancouver discuss issues with his corps representatives. (Wayne Emde)

Saturday Evening


Captain Ted Usher (L) and Pillars Chair Philip Sherwin prepare to draw for a Silver Star winter ski vacation for 2. 


The package was donated by Silver Star Resorts in Vernon. Below - the winner, Gay Witowski (centre) from the Sponsoring Committee of 2510 Sicamous RCACC. On the left is Ms. Agnes Keegan of 2290 RCACC Vancouver Sponsoring Committee. Agnes was called upon to make the draw.  (Wayne Emde)

Mr. Francois Arseneault holds up a carved plaque of the Rocky Mountain Rangers, donated for the silent auction. (Wayne Emde)


Major Russ Lacey encouraging delegates to bid on a hand woven camouflage blanket in the silent auction. (Wayne Emde)


Major Russ Lacey and Mr. Francois Arseneault display a donated print for the silent auction. (Wayne Emde)


Piper (to be identified) (Wayne Emde)

Pipes and drums play for the delegates. (Wayne Emde)


Cadets from The Royal Westminster Regiment and Rocky Mountain Rangers bands play for the delegates. (Wayne Emde)

Capt Bob Pratt conducts the band. (Wayne Emde)


The Band (Wayne Emde)


Cadet soloist plays for the delegates. (Wayne Emde)


Sunday Exposition

On Sunday morning in Vernon the sun was shining at the BC Dragoons Armoury just north of the camp. The morning started off with an outdoor pancake breakfast with eggs, bacon, sausages and all the coffee you could drink. Once the delegates had their fill, then entered in to the Armoury and there on display were many vendors and groups all associated in some way to the Canadian Cadet Movement. From the Army Cadet History webmaster and historian Francois Arseneault to Herbie's Surplus, a display on the Duke of Edinburgh Awards, to the RCMP. Outside the Armoury were two exciting events. One was the cadet bands who played again for the group but the second display was a newly formed mounted army cadet horse squad. The cadets and their officer's along with a small group of horses performed a mounted drill demonstration for the crowd. It was obvious the cadets on the horses enjoyed performing for the delegates. With a little more practice, 'watch out RCMP Musical Ride'. Well done cadets from the BCD's.

Pillars Conference 2006 ended very positively by many delegates expressing their opinion on how much they enjoyed and learned from attending the conference. Especially the civilian Sponsoring Committee members. This is a sign that the Pillars Committee did what was required; putting on a successful learning conference at a very reasonable cost.

What is happening for Pillars Conference 2007? Check back on the web page to find out. A meeting was held May 10th in Victoria by the committee to 'hot wash' this recent conference and a discussion was held about some ideas for next year. Stay tuned! 

The pancake breakfast to start. (Wayne Emde)


Cadet MWO Bradley Gaucher of 903 BCD Kelowna talks to some officer's about his display. The display compliments MWO Gaucher's very successful cadet career that took him all the way to Bisley England this past summer as part of Canada's National Shooting team. 


MWO Gaucher. His parents and cadet corps should be very proud of him Well Done!  (Wayne Emde)


A display and discussion on the Duke of Edinburgh Award program. (Wayne Emde)


The Military Family Resource Centre. (Wayne Emde)


Need a plaque? Corps Coin? Mr. Rod McLeod (a former cadet) from Calgary has many items for the military. (Wayne Emde)


Major Russ Lacey addresses the group with a fine selection of cadets as his back drop. (Wayne Emde)


Mr. Francois Arseneault talks about the Army Cadet History web site. (Wayne Emde)


Yes cadets can get hurt! Fortunately cadets from 1705 BCD Vernon are highly trained in First Aid. (Wayne Emde)


The combined military band from The Royal Westminster Regiment under the direction of Sgt. Bushby of 2316 New Westminster. (Wayne Emde)


The Seaforth cadets Pipes and Drums. (Wayne Emde)


903's newly formed horse troop. (Wayne Emde)


903's newly formed horse troop. (Wayne Emde)


"Dad I can't even reach the stirrups yet!" Major Dan Davies and his daughter Hana try one of the horses for size. (Wayne Emde)

The Sunday exposition at Brig Murphy Armoury (F.Arseneault)


Combined Pipes and Drums (F.Arseneault)


The Sunday exposition at Brig Murphy Armoury (F.Arseneault)


First Aid demo put on by 1705 BCD Cadet Corps (F.Arseneault)


The Sunday exposition at Brig Murphy Armoury (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop at the Pillars Conference April 30. Major Rodriguez from 903 RCACC Kelowna (7th from right) had the idea of the Mounted Troop. 903 RCACC Kelowna went with the idea and raised the funds along with approval, formed the squad. Cadets and Officer's from 903 and 1705 RCACC Vernon are involved.  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)


the combined 903 - 1705 BCD Cadet Horse Troop  (F.Arseneault)




The newly formed army cadet corps in BC, 2893 Fort Nelson RCACC receives their Corps Charter from (l) MGen Brian Vernon - President Army Cadet League of Canada BC Branch, Cdr Rick Mountford - CO RCSU (Pac), Sponsoring Committee member (to be identified) and Lt Ryan Morgan CO 2893. (Wayne Emde)


Lt Morgan receives the corps 2005/2006 efficiency award from CO RCSU (Pac). (Wayne Emde)


CO 1726 RCACC Comox, Capt Anthony Bone (R) and Sponsoring Committee member Mrs. Sherri Luj receives the corps efficiency Gold award from CO RCSU (Pac). (Wayne Emde)


CO 2276 RCACC Fort St John, Capt Gregg Nicoll (R), Sponsoring Committee member Ms Audrey Fowler receives their Gold efficiency award from CO RCSU (Pac). (Wayne Emde)


CO 1838 RCACC Maple Ridge, Major Paul Savoie and Sponsoring Committee member (to be id) receives the corps Gold efficiency award from CO RCSU (Pac). (Wayne Emde)


Lt Karm Nagra from 2381 RCACC Richmond and LCol Brian Gagne on behalf of the CO British Columbia Regiment receives the corps Gold efficiency award from CO RCSU (Pac). (Wayne Emde)


Capt Trevor Henderson and Sponsoring Committee member (to be id) accepts the Gold efficiency award from CO RCSU (Pac) on behalf of the CO 2893 RCACC Port Coquitlam. (Wayne Emde)


CO 2812 RCACC Surrey, Maj Thompson and Sponsoring Committee member Mrs. Cathy Bach accepts their corps Gold efficiency award from CO RCSU (Pac). (Wayne Emde)


2Lt Owen and CWO (to be id) accepts the corps Gold efficiency award on behalf of CO 3005 RCACC Victoria from CO RCSU(Pac). (Wayne Emde)

A special occasion for 2Lt Andy Veltmeyer CO 2757 RCACC Fernie. He was presented his Commission scroll from Col Robert Peron (r) Director of Cadets and Major Russ Lacey SO2 Army RCSU (Pac). Andy's wife, Lennette, was present for the celebration. (Wayne Emde)


Another special moment, 2nd Lientenant Lindsay Beger from 903 RCACC Kelowna receives her commission scroll from Major Russ Lacey, RCSU (Pac). (Wayne Emde)


On Saturday evening it was announced that 2812 RCACC Surrey Seaforth was the winner of the Roy Rigby-Jones trophy for being the top cadet corps in BC for 2005/2006 training year. (l to r) Mrs. Cathy Bach Sponsoring Committee Chair for 2812, MGen Brian Vernon President Army Cadet League of Canada BC Branch, Major Thompson CO 2812 and Major Russ Lacey SO2 Army. The actual trophy will be presented to the corps by Roy Rigby-Jones at their ACR in June. (Wayne Emde)