Military personnel honoured in Queen’s Birthday Honours List

  • Personnel have been granted state honours for their work in the Armed Forces.
  • Serving personnel have been recognised for their contributions throughout the pandemic and engaging with the wider armed forces communities.

Military personnel from across the three services have been recognised for their dedication and commendable service in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List, published today.

All recipients have gone above and beyond while on duty, displaying outstanding fortitude and dedication to their roles, with many recipients recognised for their exceptional contribution to the Armed Forces over long-established careers.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said:

A huge congratulations to the Service men and women who have been recognised in The Queen’s Birthday Honours List. The awards highlight the talent, commitment and dedication of our incredible Armed Forces.

Our Service personnel continue to be a great source of pride and inspiration for our country. They are the best of us, and it is fantastic to see so many recognised for their hard work.

Listed below are examples of some of the servicemen and women who have been listed in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours List.

Captain Harpreet Kaur Chandi, awarded an MBE

Captain Chandi stepped onto the ice of Antarctica on 24 November 2021. In just 40 days she covered 700 miles, making history to become the first woman of colour to complete a solo and unsupported trek to the South Pole. Under the name ‘Polar Preet’, detailed planning and training for the expedition took a remarkably short period of just two years. This expedition exemplifies the opportunities for adventure and personal development that are open to all soldiers, no matter their background, gender or race. She is now the third fastest woman to trek across the continent.

Captain Harpreet Kaur Chandi said:

It feels incredible. I didn’t think someone like me could get this. I’m honoured.

I wanted to do something that not only pushed my boundaries but also inspired others to do the same.

Brigadier Karl Harris, awarded a CBE

Brigadier Harris’ exemplary and selfless leadership of the Army Multicultural Network has been the central factor in building and sustaining trust between the Army chain of command and its officers and soldiers. He commissioned from Sandhurst in 1994 and since then, he has built, mentored, and led an informal network of multicultural soldiers. He set up the Network in 2015 and in 2020, within the first weeks of the national lockdown, he assembled a remote working group to understand and provide solutions to mitigate the disproportionate impact of COVID19 on minority ethnic soldiers, their families and their units.

Brigadier Harris said:

My father came to the UK amidst the Windrush Generation and served a distinguished 22-year Army career. It is his legacy and those of thousands of others that first inspired me to volunteer to create the Army Multicultural Network. This award is humbling and feels quite extraordinary – a testament to our forebears and their legacy.

I have a feeling of immense gratitude to work with a cohort of phenomenal people who have committed huge amounts of time, effort and emotion to improving opportunities for all to thrive in their military careers. They’ve often shared quite challenging personal testimonies to make a better future for soldiers and their loved ones.

Air Vice Marshal (The Venerable) John Raymond ELLIS QHC, awarded a Promotion to the Military Division of the Most Honourable order of the Bath as a Companion

As Chaplain-in-Chief of the RAF, his drive and determination will leave a legacy based upon leadership and strong transformational instincts. He has been at the forefront of the Royal Air Force’s modernisation of professional career fields, resetting the chaplaincy structure, training and career pathways, at the same time re-energising chaplaincy recruiting. He also oversaw the chaplaincy during a particularly challenging period where he weathered the pandemic and turned it to advantage with an array of novel virtual worship methods and models that have been widely deployed and copied.

Air Vice Marshal John Ellis said:

As my time as a chaplain in the Royal Air Force comes to a close, I reflect on the immense privilege I have had sharing in the hopes and journeys of so many incredible people. As chaplains, we often just quietly get on with that which we feel called to do and as such, I find myself absolutely delighted, but completely humbled to be honoured with such an award.

Commodore Melanie Robinson, awarded a CBE

Commodore Robinson has made an exceptional contribution to Defence from being the first female commanding officer of a Royal Navy warship to being the senior Maritime Reservist and the first woman to command a fighting arm supporting the Fleet. With a comprehensive long-term vision of how the Maritime Reserves should be configured, she has led a generational change in its direction and management. The architect of the transformation of the Maritime Reserves at every level, her leadership has formed a Reserve force that is a credible, relevant, effective, and agile fighting arm of the Royal Navy delivering critical Defence tasks alongside Regular colleagues.

Commodore Melanie Robinson said:

I am truly humbled. Thank you to the Royal Naval Reservists and Royal Marines Reservists for embracing my appetite for generational change. The award spotlights the credibility of the Maritime Reserves as a fighting arm; we exist to deliver our people capabilities.

I trust I epitomise what can be achieved with the support of a loving family and a Service that is totally committed to adapting its ways of working to unlock people’s potential for the betterment of our fantastic organisation and for Defence.

Wing Commander Nina Rose, awarded an RRC

Wing Commander Rose is a true ambassador for the Princess Mary’s Royal Air Force Nursing Service and Defence Medical Services. Her empathic and authentic leadership combined with an operational and academic mindset have particularly shone in the last 2 years; Wing Commander Rose relentlessly and determinedly dealt with all that the COVID-19 crisis presented. Her role modelling behaviour and visible leadership saw her forward presence in the clinical areas inspiring the workforce and where, through her innovation, she managed workforce deficiencies and re-purposed the wards to deliver the required surge capacity.

Wing Commander Nina Rose said:

I am honoured and truly humbled to have been awarded the Royal Red Cross. Having nursed for 33 years, I have had the privilege of serving within the Princess Mary’s Royal Air Force Nursing Service for most of my career, leading teams of exceptionally dedicated nurses, prepared to care for our Service personnel throughout the patient care pathway.

Lieutenant Commander Nathaniel Geddes, awarded an MBE

Lieutenant Commander Geddes led HMS Defender Marine Engineering Department in providing the highest level of material availability in support of operations. In the face of considerable operational constraints, and under an acute political spotlight, he played a key role in ensuring that the ship was able to continue in her critical role in support of the strategically important United Kingdom Carrier Strike Group deployment. His efforts were particularly evident in the successful outmanoeuvre of hostile forces in the Black Sea.

Lieutenant Commander Nathaniel Geddes said:

I feel overwhelmed to be recognised like this and I am absolutely thrilled; to receive this honour during the Jubilee year makes it extra special. My family and friends will be so proud. They have sacrificed so much.

I left home at 16 to join the Royal Navy as an Artificer Apprentice and it’s been an amazing adventure. The support of my family, wife Nicole and son throughout has been unbelievable and I feel extremely lucky to have them.

Wing Commander Manjeet Ghataora, awarded an OBE

Wing Commander Ghataora has been an inspiring advocate and role model delivering outstanding outreach work to unrepresented communities. In particular he has been exceptional at promoting STEM and engineering careers to diverse groups of young people. He has also used his influence as the most senior Sikh in the Armed Forces to selflessly engage with young people and communities across the UK.

Wing Commander Manjeet Ghataora said:

This has been such a shock, but I am utterly humbled to be recognised in this Platinum Jubilee year. Having also served in the RAF, I want to dedicate this award to my late father, who instilled in me the virtues of humility, selfless service, and the importance of equality.

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