Lieutenant Commander (LCDR) Ange Googe has made a welcomed move back to her home state of Queensland where she took over the role of Executive Officer (XO) at shore establishment HMAS Cairns this week.
“It’s a privilege to have this opportunity, both for the position of XO and also for the location,” said the former Ipswich local, “HMAS Cairns is such a positive, upbeat and professional base.
“You walk through the gate and you can feel it, it’s a great place to be.”
In an official handover ceremony, one hundred personnel turned out to witness the change of XO from LCDR Andrew Dobb to LCDR Googe following colours last Friday.
The Ship’s Warrant Officer, Warrant Officer (WO) Mark Cooper highlighted the positive influence LCDR Dobb had both on the base and the region during his tenure.
“LCDR Dobb was a positive influence both inside the establishment and in the Cairns community, fostering and improving partnerships with community organisations and local government agencies,” WO Cooper said, “it’s a diverse role but one of great importance to both Defence and the people of Cairns.”
Although sad to leave, LCDR Dobb is looking forward to his next endeavour as the Commanding Officer of the Patrol Boat crew Ardent Six, commencing in June this year.
During the ceremony, the outgoing XO, LCDR Dobb passed on a few words of advice to LCDR Googe and assured her of the positive experiences she will face in the Cairns posting.
“He said I’ll be working hard which is no surprise,” laughed LCDR Googe, “but he really didn’t want to go and assured me that being the Executive Officer in Cairns is a fantastic posting.”
LCDR Googe conducted duties as Staff Officer 2 (SO2) Health Global in her previous posting at Headquarters Joint Operations Command (HQJOC) in Canberra. The Nursing Officer recognises the big change in both location and role but is looking forward to her new position in North Queensland.
“I’m enjoying the focus more on Navy and being in direct support of operations,” LCDR Googe said, “keeping the platforms away from the wharf when they need to be and working to make that a reality, that’s what our focus here is, when ships need to go to sea we’re here to facilitate that.”
With a responsibility extending from Rockhampton to Thursday Island, Cairns has 900 Navy and civilian personnel and is the homeport for 14 naval vessels.