Mark Norman (RCN officer)

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Mark Norman

150421-N-ZI511-401 Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert welcomes Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy Vice Adm. Mark Norman.jpg
Norman meeting CNO Greenert
Allegiance Canada
Service/branch Royal Canadian Navy
Years of service1980–present
Commands heldHMCS St. John's
Canadian Fleet – Atlantic
AwardsCommander of the Order of Military Merit
Canadian Forces Decoration
US Legion of Merit (Commander)

Vice-Admiral Mark A. G. Norman CMM CD (born c. 1964) is a Royal Canadian Navy officer. On August 5, 2016, he assumed the appointment of Vice Chief of the Defence Staff of Canada,[1] but was temporarily relieved from the post on January 16, 2017.[2] He was permanently removed from the post on June 27, 2018, for allegedly releasing sensitive government information to affect a procurement of naval supply ships, which potentially constituted a breach of trust.[3]

Naval career[edit]

Educated in Queen's University, Norman joined the Naval Reserve in 1980 as a diesel mechanic before transferring to the regular force in 1985 as a sub-lieutenant.[4] He became Commanding Officer of the frigate HMCS St. John's.[4] He went on to be Assistant Chief of Transformation in 2005, Director General Strategy, Chief Force Development in 2007 and Commander Canadian Fleet – Atlantic in 2009.[5] He then became Director General Maritime Force Development in 2010 and Assistant Chief of the Naval Staff and Deputy Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy in June 2011 before becoming Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy and Chief of the Naval Staff in June 2013.[6]

In January 2016, it was announced he was to be appointed as Vice Chief of the Defence Staff of the Canadian Armed Forces. His successor as Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy was Rear-Admiral Ron Lloyd.[7]

Removal from command[edit]

On January 13, 2017, Norman was temporarily relieved of his post as Vice Chief of Defence Staff by General Jonathan Vance, Chief of the Defence Staff.[8] The removal was over an investigation into whether Norman had leaked sensitive documents relating to the procurement of an interim supply ship for the Royal Canadian Navy. Norman was replaced on a temporary basis by Vice-Admiral Ron Lloyd, the commander of the Navy.[9]

On March 9, 2018, Norman was charged with one count of breach of trust by public officer. He was permanently removed from the post on June 27, 2018.[10]

It has been alleged that Norman's removal and prosecution were politically motivated. Before he was formally charged, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau twice publicly predicted that the case will end up in court, raising the possibility of political interference in the process.[11] It also has been alleged that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police has failed to investigate other potential suspects.[12]

Awards and decorations[edit]

Norman's personal awards and decorations include the following:

Order of Military Merit (Canada) ribbon (CMM).jpg
Special Service Medal Ribbon.pngCPSM Ribbon.png
QEII Diamond Jubilee Medal ribbon.pngCD-ribbon and 2 bars.png

Canadian Command Commendation.jpg

Ribbon Description Notes
Order of Military Merit (CMM)
  • Appointed Commander (CMM) on 17 October 2012[13]
Special Service Medal
  • with NATO-OTAN Clasp
Canadian Peacekeeping Service Medal
NATO Medal for the former Yugoslavia
  • with FORMER YUGOSLAVIA clasp
Queen Elizabeth Diamond Jubilee Medal
  • Decoration awarded in 2012[14]
  • Canadian version
Canadian Forces Decoration (CD)
  • with two Clasp for 32 years of services
Commander of the Legion of Merit
  • Decoration awarded on 21 April 2015[15]
  • United States

Canadian Command Commendation.jpg Command Commendation


  1. ^ Vice-Admiral Mark Norman becomes Canada's new Vice Chief of the Defence Staff Government of Canada News Release, 5 August 2016
  2. ^ Brewster, Murray (16 January 2017). "Mark Norman, outspoken military vice-chief, relieved of duty without explanation". Retrieved 16 January 2017.
  3. ^ Chase, Steven (June 27, 2018). "Vice-Admiral Mark Norman removed as vice-chief of defence staff, three months after charges laid". Retrieved 27 July 2018.
  4. ^ a b Commander of the RCN Royal Canadian Navy
  5. ^ Down to the sea in ships, m’lads . . . Archived 2013-12-23 at the Wayback Machine. Queen's Alumni Review, 2009
  6. ^ Vice Admiral Mark Norman assumes command of the Royal Canadian Navy Daily Observer, June 2013
  7. ^ Tasker, John Paul (19 January 2016). "Top ranks of Canadian Forces get shake-up with new army, navy commanders". CBC News. Retrieved 20 January 2016.
  8. ^ Campion-Smith, Bruce (16 January 2017). "Top Canadian military commander Mark Norman relieved of post". The Toronto Star. Retrieved 16 January 2017.
  9. ^ Fife, Robert; Chase, Steven (January 16, 2017). "RCMP investigation into alleged leaks prompts Canadian Forces vice-chief's removal". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved January 17, 2017.
  10. ^ "Suspended Vice-Admiral Norman to be removed as military's second-in-command". CBC. 27 June 2018. Retrieved 27 June 2018.
  11. ^ "Trudeau says case against vice-admiral accused of leaking secrets will 'inevitably' go to court | CBC News". CBC News. The Canadian Press. February 2, 2018. Retrieved 2018-08-14.
  12. ^ Pugliese, David (2018-01-13). "Man overboard". National Post. Retrieved 2018-08-16.
  13. ^ "Order of Military Merit List". The Governor General of Canada.
  14. ^ "The Diamond Jubilee Medal List". The Governor General of Canada.
  15. ^ "Royal Canadian Navy Vice Adm. Mark Norman receives Legion of Merit". The Defense Visual Information Distribution Service.

External links[edit]

Military offices
Preceded by
Paul Maddison
Commander of the Royal Canadian Navy
Succeeded by
Ron Lloyd
Preceded by
Guy Thibault
Vice Chief of the Defence Staff
Succeeded by
Paul Wynnyk