CAF Visiting Defence Fellow 2023-24
Colonel Michael (Mike) Babin is originally from Val d'Or, Québec. He joined the Canadian Armed Forces as a pilot in 1997. He completed his first operational tour as a tactical helicopter pilot with 430e Escadron tactique d'hélicoptères (ETAH) in Valcartier, Québec. During his first tour, he deployed to Bosnia and Haiti.
In 2005, he was posted to 3 Canadian Forces Flying Training School (3 CFFTS) in Portage-La-Prairie, Manitoba as a flight instructor. In 2008, he was promoted to Major and posted to the Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre (CMTC) in Wainwright, Alberta as the G5 Aviation.
In 2009, he was posted back to 430 ETAH where he deployed to Afghanistan as the Operations Officer of the Canadian Aviation Battalion, Roto 10. In 2011, he attended the Joint Command and Staff Program at the Canadian Forces College in Toronto, Ontario.
In 2012, he was posted to 1 Wing headquarters in Kingston, Ontario as the A7, responsible for Standards, Training, Doctrine and Acquisitions. In July 2014 as an important crisis was taking place in Eastern Europe, he was posted to NATO Allied Air Command Headquarters in Ramstein, Germany as an Air Operations Planning Group Leader within the Strategy Division.
In July 2017, he took command of 430 Squadron in Valcartier, Québec. He was deployed to Mali on Operation PRÉSENCE as the Commanding Officer of Task Force Mali Aviation Battalion Roto 1. Following his Squadron command, he was promoted to the rank of Colonel and posted to Ottawa, Ontario as the J5 and then Acting Director General Plans of the Canadian Joint Operations Command (CJOC). In 2021, he is posted back to Kingston, ON as the Commander of 1 Wing. In 2023, following his Wing Command, he is selected to be the CAF Visiting Defence Fellow at Queen’s University in Kingston.
Col Babin is a graduate from the Royal Military College of Canada as well as the Canadian Forces College. He is married and they have two daughters.