Lieutenant (Navy) Rory Kulmala

Sailor Profile / July 30, 2014

Maritime Surface Officer, HMCS Malahat (Naval Reserve Division), Victoria

I lead HMCS Malahat’s Deck Department, which includes the Dive section. In this role, I am responsible for the administration and readiness of departmental personnel and equipment.

It is a hands-on job and I work with great people who are not afraid of a challenge, and who actively seek opportunities to practise their trade.

I have been working in the construction industry for over 20 years and have held senior project manager roles with both private and public organizations. Currently I work for B.C. Transit as the Manager of Fixed Asset Construction, where I am responsible for the capital delivery of infrastructure projects throughout the province. I am married to another naval reservist and we have two young daughters who keep us busy. 

I have been in the Naval Reserve for over 25 years, and quite frankly I can’t remember why I joined. Perhaps the question now is – why do I stay? Perhaps the simplest answer is that I enjoy the people and the excitement that being an active reservist provides.

It has given me the opportunity to do things that others may never get the chance to do. It has also challenged me to achieve goals that I thought otherwise out of reach. Understanding my physical and mental limits has certainly translated well to my civilian occupation where I feel that I can better manage crises and stress. I think that a good part of my character was developed because of my navy experiences.

Canadians should know that we are average people who invest a considerable amount of time and energy into developing our skills and knowledge with the intent of supporting our nation, as and when needed.