Ian’s dedication honoured with OBE

Her Majesty The Queen honoured DECA Business Development Director, Ian Cole as an ‘Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire’, (OBE) in the 2020 New Year Honours List recognising his services to Defence and his outstanding contribution to the wider community. Ian was awarded this honour during at his Investiture held at Windsor Castle on 3rd November 2021 and was presented with his OBE by Her Royal Highness Princess Ann, the Princess Royal.

Ian began his working life as an Engineering Apprentice in the Coal Mining Industry in South Wales gaining an outstanding ability to engage with people with sincerity and integrity, whatever their background. Ian moved into the MOD at RAF St Athan and has used these skills and his unmistakable passion for defence to serve far beyond expectation. Ian led the setup of the DSG Equipment Sustainability System in Camp Bastion, Afghanistan which provided unrivalled support to UK Armed Forces whilst ensuring significant cost avoidance for the UK MOD. Ian’s dedication, resilience, tenacity, objectivity and integrity on an international stage were pivotal in forging strong and influential relationships with global partners contributed significantly to the award of the global F-35 contract to Sealand Support Services.

Ian’s personal contribution to the wider community has seen him dedicate more than 25 years as a volunteer Coast Guard in HM Coastguard, 19 of which he served as Station Officer, risking his own life to save others. In 2007, Ian received the Chief Coast Guards Meritorious Commendation for his outstanding contribution during the Gloucester, Tewkesbury and Oxfordshire flood crisis. More significantly, Ian was awarded a ‘Good Citizenship Award for Bravery’ by South Wales Police after rescuing a man in danger of being swept off Porthcawl Pier in adverse weather conditions. He also received Bronze and Silver Citizenship awards from the Borough Council for his voluntary work. Ian’s service continues today as the Porthcawl RNLI Water Safety Officer on the RNLI Operations Committee, and as a Watchkeeper with the National Coastwatch Institution and Chairman of the Porthcawl Coastguard Association.

Commenting on his award and achievements, Ian said:

I feel hugely honoured to receive this recognition, and it has only been achieved by having wonderful people around me. It is those who I have worked with over the years that have made things possible both in DECA and within my community and it goes without saying the support of my family has been unstinting.

My Investiture was a fabulous day, and the Princess Royal was most interested and knowledgeable in the work that we are currently undertaking in DECA in support of defence.

Geraint Spearing added:

I am immensely proud that Ian is part of the DECA family, he has worked tirelessly for defence and the community with compassion and dedication and I couldn’t be more pleased that his work has been recognised in this way.

/Public Release. This material from the originating organization/author(s) may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. The views and opinions expressed are those of the author(s).View in full here.