Breaking New Ground—Stories from Defence Construction Breaking_new_ground - Page 120

Keith Dyer (left), photographed with former Chief of the Defence Staff General Rick Hillier, was dispatched by DCC to Afghanistan to work on a contracting and contract management framework in support of the mission. Kabul as part of the NATO International Stabilization Assistance Force. In 2003, with the security situation relatively stable in Kabul, DCC deployed Richard Allie to Camp Julien to establish a contracting and contract management framework for DCC support to the mission. When Keith Dyer replaced him, he worked primarily with the Civilian Military Cooperation (CIMIC) platoon, whose mission to implement community recon- struction projects included the repair of schools, mosques and medical clinics. By 2004–05, there was also a team of employees in Ottawa and in the city of Kabul managing the construction of a new Canadian embassy compound on behalf of Foreign Affairs Canada. Ross Nicholls recalls that: It was questionable if this was really a defence project within our mandate, but Foreign Affairs was in a bind, so I took the position that the Canadian government priorities of defence, diplomacy and development in Afghanistan could not be separated in this kind of situation. I did brief Minister Owen of my intention; he 110 concurred, commenting ‘… who could question an organization called Defence Construction building for the government in a war zone?’ Treasury Board asked for an explanation which I gave. I believe it was the right thing to do and I would make the same decision again. In 2006, the Canadian Forces moved to the more volatile Kandahar Province in southern Afghanistan with a base of operations at the Kandahar Airfield (KAF). As a result of the relationship developed with the Military Engineers in CANOSCOM, DCC became a significant player in the camp support function, providing contracting, contract and project manage- ment services to the Engineering Support Unit (ESU) as an integrated part of the Engineer team with six people in KAF and one at Camp Nathan Smith, a Provincial Reconstruction Team base at Kandahar city. Elia Miller, DCC’s first Manager of Site Operations in Kandahar, received a Chief of the Defence Staff commendation for the outstanding results of his efforts to establish the DCC-ESU relationship. In 2007, Hans Gartner, retired DCC Manager of Infrastructure Support Services, explained the significance of the change: BREAKING NEW GROUND DEFENCE CONSTRUCTION CANADA