Canadian Fleet Pacific’s Sailor of Third Quarter named

Master Sailor Kortni Watson

Master Sailor Kortni Watson. Photo: Sergeant Ghislain Cotton.

Lt(N) Michelle Scott, 
HMCS Vancouver PAO

A deployed sailor has been named Canadian Fleet Pacific’s Sailor of the Third Quarter.

Master Sailor (MS) Kortni Watson, a Naval Combat Information Operator (NCIOP) in His Majesty’s Canadian Ship (HMCS) Vancouver, learned she won the award via Zoom.

“Being given the award in the presence of VAN families was a great privilege,” MS Watson said. “To be able to share this experience with our families back home, live at sea and across the world was fantastic.”

The news came on Sept. 29 from Commodore Dave Mazur, Commander Coastal Fleet Pacific, and Chief Petty Officer First Class Dave Bisal, Canadian Fleet Pacific Chief.

The award recognizes the outstanding achievements of junior non-commissioned members from the fleet.

On board Vancouver, MS Watson wears many hats.

Not only is she an NCIOP by trade, but she also:

  • serves as Mess President of the Master Sailor and Below Mess
  • is a  Battle Cats representative – a group that focuses on Vancouver’s culture through diversity, inclusion, and morale, and
  • is a  Sentinel

Her primary role outside all of that is to serve as one of two Operations Room Supervisors (ORS). This is a job typically filled by a Petty Officer Second Class, one rank above MS Watson’s current rank.

An ORS typically manages the information flow between key individuals in the Operations Room to maintain a comprehensive air, surface, and subsurface picture. The ORS also serves in a supervisory capacity.

When MS Watson arrived on Vancouver in 2021, she was fresh off a two-year posting on the Maritime Coastal Defence Vessels – due to the different classes of ship and equipment used on each, she had to learn some of the key skills and equipment used regularly by NCIOPs on frigates. With Vancouver gearing up for deployment and short an ORS, paired with MS Watson’s exceptional performance since joining the team, she was asked to serve in the role as ORS.

“Over the past year-and-a-half, MS Watson has become one of the most effective and driven ORS I have ever worked with,” said Petty Officer First Class Kent Fox, MS Watson’s supervisor. “She runs the Operations Room with skill, effectiveness, and strong communication, while also having an understanding of Tactical Data Link [communications equipment] that has seen her get personal thanks from the Royal Australian and Chilean Navies.”

MS Watson says she couldn’t have done it without the support of the Vancouver team.

“My perceived success wouldn’t have been possible without the support from my supervisors, peers, and subordinates. Without everyone’s support in training me, supporting me through the steep learning curve encountered through this new position, and supporting me with respect to my secondary duties, I don’t believe I would have been as successful in VAN as I have been.”

Author’s Note: Team VAN is exceptionally proud of our teammate. Bravo Zulu!

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