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Raymond Romses (BASc (BA) '75)

Brigadier-General Raymond Romses
2005 Distinguished Alumnus of the Year

The University of Lethbridge Alumni Association Distinguished Alumnus/a of the Year Award recognizes individuals for exceptional professional achievements, academic excellence, and/or contributions to society. The Association is proud to recognize Brigadier-General Raymond Romses as the 2005 Distinguished Alumnus of the Year for his exceptional professional achievements and service to Canadians.

Raymond Romses has served Canadians on a variety of operational tours and appointments, including two tours with the United Nations (UN) Force in Cyprus, a tour with the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) Stabilization Force in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and a tour with the UN Force in Ethiopia and Eritrea. He has also seen international service in the United Kingdom with the 3rd Battalion Parachute Regiment and in Denmark with the Multinational Stand-By High Readiness Brigade. His service in Canada has seen him assigned command of the First Battalion Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry; Joint Task Force Two - Canada's special forces unit; Canadian Forces Base Calgary; and Land Force Atlantic Area - Canada's army in the Atlantic provinces. His leadership abilities have resulted in his progression to the most senior ranks of the Canadian Forces, and he has achieved the general officer rank. Currently, he is assigned as commander Canadian defense liaison staff (London) and defense adviser for the United Kingdom and Ireland. In this latest appointment, Raymond Romses is responsible for managing Canada's defence relationship with the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland. He also commands all Canadian Forces personnel in the United Kingdom and provides defence advice to Canada's high commissioner in London and the Canadian ambassador in Dublin.

The exemplary military career that led to these prestigious appointments began in Lethbridge in 1967 when Raymond Romses joined the Army Cadets. In 1969, he served as a private soldier with the 18th Field Regiment RCA (militia) until he enrolled in the University of Lethbridge as a Regular Officer Training Plan candidate in 1972. Raymond Romses played for the Pronghorn volleyball team and met his wife, Carol Ririe (BASc '76), during his time at the University. After graduating with a BASc (BA) in history in 1975, Raymond Romses was commissioned as a lieutenant into the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry.

In addition to his military service, Raymond Romses has been actively involved with the Calgary Military Museum Society, the Army Museum at the Halifax Citadel, and the Nova Scotia International Tattoo. He is also a patron of the Halifax Citadel Regimental Association. He has continued his athletic pursuits and played on numerous volleyball and hockey teams. In July 2004 and 2005, he led 220-person Canadian Forces contingents more than 160 kilometres at the Nijmegen Marches in the Netherlands. The Canadian military has participated in this annual four-day march since 1952.

The Honourable Ronald Jacobson, retired colonel and Provincial Court judge in Lethbridge, was the commanding officer of the 18th Field Regiment RCA (militia) while Raymond Romses was serving in it. "I have had the opportunity to observe the progress of Brigadier-General Romses' successful military career. He has clearly distinguished himself, his family, community, and Canada and, in doing so, he has also distinguished the University of Lethbridge," says Ronald Jacobson.

Raymond Romses has completed a master of arts degree and numerous military courses. U of L Associate Vice-President, Student Services, and Registrar, Leslie Lavers praises his lifelong commitment to learning. "Brigadier-General Romses is an outstanding individual who exhibits gifts and talents, drive and determination, tenacity and discipline. He has taken advantage of every opportunity that presented itself to him and continued his education with a graduate degree and a number of additional specialized professional courses," says Leslie Lavers.

The University of Lethbridge Alumni Association is proud to recognize Raymond Romses for his many personal and professional accomplishments by presenting him with the 2005 Distinguished Alumnus of the Year Award.