Penguin continues to build on rich heritage

Published on WO John O'Brien (author), ABIS Chantell Brown (author)

Topic(s): HMAS Penguin, Change of Command

Commanding Officer HMAS Penguin Commander Paul Gall presents Commander Ian Campbell with the Penguin memento and the title of Commanding Officer during a ceremony held at HMAS Penguin. (photo: ABIS Chantell Brown)
Commanding Officer HMAS Penguin Commander Paul Gall presents Commander Ian Campbell with the Penguin memento and the title of Commanding Officer during a ceremony held at HMAS Penguin.

Leadership of one of Sydney's iconic naval bases passed to new command in a unique ceremony in late January.

Commanding Officer HMAS Penguin, Commander Paul Gall, handed over a ceremonial wooden penguin to his successor Commander Ian Campbell on the waterfront at Penguin, marking the transfer of command.

The ship's company were on hand to wish Commander Gall well, and provided a guard of honour and three cheers as he and his wife, Meredith, boarded a Navy heritage motor launch for a cruise around Hunters Bay, Balmoral and the Spit Bridge.

Commander Gall has spent the past two years at Penguin and has overseen the aftermath of the major redevelopment at the waterfront. He is taking up a position within Garrison Support at Fleet Command.

Commander Gall said he had thoroughly enjoyed his command at Penguin, noting it was "one of the finest Navy, if not Defence, establishments in Australia'".

He thanked the ship's company for their excellent conduct during his tenure and also thanked the Command Team for their support.

His final official act was to award an Australia Day Medallion to Chief Petty Officer Hydrographic Systems Manager Ben White.

He said the presentation was a well-deserved recognition of Chief Petty Officer White's outstanding contribution to the Navy's Hydrographic School as well as for his support of Penguin.

With the handover of the command of Penguin, Commander Gall wished the incoming Commanding Officer all the best for his time in Command.

Commander Campbell thanked Commander Gall for his leadership over the past two years, and acknowledged his many achievements during his time in command.

"Commander Gall is handing over command of an establishment that is in great shape and ready to meet the challenges that will be faced in 2016 and beyond," he said.

"It's a real honour to take command of Penguin and I look forward to positively contributing to Navy capability and to Penguin, playing our part in ensuring that Navy can fight and win at sea.

"My philosophy whilst in command is that I want to ensure that there is a safe and secure environment at Penguin which empowers and inspires every member of the Australian Defence Force, Australian Public Service and every contractor to excel at their chosen profession.

"I encourage all of you to be the best you can, mentor and encourage those around you, set high standards and do your very best to achieve them.

"Always display moral courage, particularly in the face of adversity and remember that your teams should achieve results through people, not before people and don’t forget that Navy’s mission is your mission."

For more information about HMAS Penguin visit http://www.navy.gov.au/establishments/hmas-penguin