2024 Speakers

Major General Karsten Stoye

Major General Karsten Stoye

Head of Civil-Military Cooperation Military Advisor to the Director General EUROCONTROL Civil-Military Cooperation Division Brussels, Belgium

Major General Karsten Stoye assumed his position as Head of Civil-Military Cooperation and Military Advisor to the Director General at Eurocontrol after his previous assignment as Chief of Staff at NATO’s Headquarters Allied Air Command at Ramstein Air Base, on 1 October 2021.

After studying economics and administrative science at the University of the German Federal Armed Forces in Hamburg, General Stoye has served in various operational and staff positions. As a senior operations officer and command pilot in the Tactical Reconnaissance Wing 51 ‘Immelmann’, he contributed from 1995 to 1996 to the United Nations and NATO missions during the conflict in the Former Yugoslavia. In 1998 he graduated from the Command and General Staff Officer Course at the Federal Armed Forces Command and Staff College in Hamburg.

Until 2000, General Stoye served as a Branch Chief at the NATO Combined Air Operations Centre 4 (CAOC 4) in Messstetten, Germany, where he was responsible for training and exercises. In 1999 he contributed to the NATO Operation in Kosovo as Chief Air Task Order Planner at the Balkan CAOC in Vicenza.

From 2000 to the end of 2003, he was Commander of the Flying Group of Fighter Bomber Wing 31 “Boelcke” in Nörvenich. The following year, he was assigned to the German Ministry of Defence as Assistant Branch Chief at the Air Staff, responsible for concepts and requirements for Air Force Operations. After a follow-on assignment at the Air Force Command from 2005 to 2006, he served at the Ministry of Defence as Military Assistant to the Parliamentary State Secretary.

At the end of 2007, he assumed command of the Tactical Reconnaissance Wing 51 “Immelmann” in Schleswig, Northern Germany until 2010. During this time he was appointed as Base Commander at the Operation Wing Mazar-e-Sharif in Afghanistan for operations under NATO International Security Assistance Force from 2008 to 2009. As Base Commander and command pilot, he was responsible for all flying operations of the Reconnaissance Tornados, the Transall C-160 transport aircraft and the CH-53 helicopters as well as for the entire force protection and combat support operations.

Next, General Stoye went through two assignments at the Ministry of Defence, first as Branch Chief responsible for Concepts and Requirements for Air Force Operations (in 2011), and subsequently as Branch Chief, Department of Defence Plans & Policy (in 2012), where he was responsible for the capability management of information, surveillance and reconnaissance affairs of the DEU Armed Forces.

From 2013 until 2015 he was the Deputy Commander at NATO’s Deployable Air Command and Control Centre in Poggio Renatico, Italy.

General Stoye had been the Commander of the NATO E-3A Component in Geilenkirchen, Germany, from 2015 until 2018, where he led an international military and civilian staff, representing 16 NATO nations which provide an airborne early warning, command and control and battle management capability in support of NATO commanders. In 2018 General Stoye began his assignment as the Deputy Chief of Staff Operations at NATO’s Headquarters Allied Air Command and 2019 as Chief of Staff.

General Stoye has flown more than 3,000 flying hours primarily on the TORNADO weapon system, including more than 70 operational missions.

Major Awards and Decorations

  • Gold Cross of Honour of the Bundeswehr
  • Bundeswehr Foreign Duty Medal UNPF
  • Bundeswehr Foreign Duty Medal IFOR
  • Bundeswehr Foreign Duty Medal SFOR
  • Bundeswehr Foreign Duty Medal ISAF
  • NATO Medal for the former Yugoslavia
  • NATO Non-Article 5 Medal for ISAF
  • NATO Meritorious Service Medal
  • Knight of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Italy
  • Spinoza Medal of the German War Graves Commission
Effective dates of Promotion
  1. Second Lieutenant 1986
  2. First Lieutenant 1989
  3. Captain 1992
  4. Major 1996
  5. Lieutenant Colonel 2000
  6. Colonel 2008
  7. Brigadier General 2013
  8. Major General 2019

Saunders Bio

Mr. Pete JW Saunders

Director General NORAD Continental Defence Modernization Office

Mr. Saunders enrolled in the Canadian Forces 23 March 1990. Over the span of his somewhat atypical and discontinuous career, Mr. Saunders enjoyed operational postings flying and instructing on his beloved Sea King Helicopters at 443 (MH) Sqn in Pat Bay, British Columbia; 423 (MH) Sqn, and 12 Wing Operations in Shearwater, Nova Scotia; culminating in Command of 406 (M) OTS. Throughout this period, he has served in HMCS Annapolis, HMCS Iroquois, HMCS Fredericton and HMCS Toronto and has deployed throughout the Middle East.

Staff postings to date include two stints in the Career Management shop, the last being a two-year sojourn as DMilC4; responsible for guiding, managing and, at times, cajoling some 300 high-maintenance LCols and overseeing the management of almost 10,000 other members of the RCAF. He also spent three years on a self-imposed educational posting (yes, self-posted) to the Chief of Programme office learning the corporate side of the Department of National Defence and working upon, among other things, analysing financial risk to the Departmental Investment Plan and taking a lead in drafting the next iteration of this document for governmental consideration. For the past six years, Mr. Saunders has ensconced himself in the Air Staff responsible for the management and development of a number of contracted training solutions for the RCAF. In his current role, Mr. Saunders retains oversight of RCAF contracted training programs whilst standing up and leading the RCAF component of NORAD modernization.

Mr. Saunders is a graduate of the Joint Command and Staff Program at the Canadian Forces College and the Senior Course at the NATO Defence College. He holds a bachelor’s degree in science from Acadia University, a Certificate in Adult Education from Dalhousie University, a master’s degree in business administration from Heriot Watt University and a master’s degree in Defence Studies from the Royal Military College of Canada.

Major General Kathryn Toohey (Rtd)

Australian Army

Kathryn Toohey retired from the Australian Army at the rank of major general in late 2022. As a senior Army officer, Kathryn specialised in Defence capability and was appointed the first Head Land Capability within Army Headquarters where she was responsible for the modernisation and sustainment of Army capability; including helicopters, tanks, communication systems and uniforms. In her last role as Head Force Integration, she was responsible to provide test and evaluation advice to the Defence Investment Committee. In 2021, her team released the Defence Test and Evaluation Strategy. Kathryn holds an Executive Master in Business Administration (MBA), a Master of Management in Defence Studies; a Graduate Diploma in Information Technology and a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering (Honours). Since retiring from the Army, Kathryn provides a range of mentoring and advisory services and is a member of several boards, including the Swinburne Defence Advisory Board.

Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld (Rtd)

Royal Australian Air Force

Mel Hupfeld was appointed as a member of the Air Services Australia Board in August 2023 as a non-Executive Director. He also has roles on the Air Force Association Board, the Spitfire Association Advisory Council, the Swinburne Research Institute Advisory Board and is a member of the Public Service Advisory Board to provide strategic advice to Government and Industry clients.

Mel was born in Sydney in 1962 and grew up in Broken Hill, New South Wales until moving to Semaphore, South Australia with his family. He completed his final two years of High School at Le Fevre High in Port Adelaide. He joined the Royal Australian Air Force as an Academy Cadet in January 1980, graduating as a pilot, with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1983.

During his Air Force career, he flew Mirage, Classic Hornet and Super Hornet fighter aircraft in several of the Air Force’s fighter squadrons and achieved over 3,500 flying hours. In 2001 Mel took command of No 75 Squadron (75SQN) and led the Squadron in operations in the Middle East on Operations BASTILLE and FALCONER, as a part of Australia’s contribution to Operation IRAQI FREEDOM in 2003. He completed several staff appointments including in the capability development and force design areas and completed the Royal Air Force Advanced Command and Staff Course, graduating with a Master of Arts in Defence Studies from King’s College in London in 1998.

Mel commanded at every level within Air Force and notably, on promotion to the rank of Air Marshal, was appointed as Chief of Joint Operations in May 2018 and subsequently Chief of Air Force in July 2019. He transitioned to the Air Force Reserve in July 2022, and retired to the South Coast of New South Wales. Since then, he has assisted the Minister for Home Affairs and Cyber Security as a member of the Expert Advisory Board to develop a National Cyber Security Strategy. As part of his transition to civilian life he has ambition to contribute to various Boards and Advisory Councils.

Vice Admiral Michael Noonan (Rtd)

Royal Australian Navy

Vice Admiral Mike Noonan retired from the Royal Australian Navy in mid 2022 after over 38 years service. In his last role, as Chief of Navy Australia, he was entrusted by government to be its principal naval advisor, and to raise, train and sustain Australia’s naval forces. His Command of the Royal Australian Navy spanned a critical period where Australia’s strategic environment underwent rapid and unanticipated deterioration, described as the most consequential strategic realignment since WWII – with the Indo-Pacific at its centre. His tenure was characterised by a focus on, and genuine respect and care for, the people he led, and he determinedly worked to expand the Navy and secured the government’s commitment to grow to 21,000 by 2035. He oversaw the introduction into service of a number of new naval capabilities, and personally led a small team that transformed the idea of nuclear powered submarines for Australia to an attainable capability outcome.

When not tending to his small herd of cattle in south-east Queensland, Admiral Noonan now supports industry and academia on a broad range of defence and maritime issues, and sits on a number of related boards. He holds Masters degrees in Maritime Policy, Business Administration, Marketing Communication, and International Relation. He has also completed the Advanced Management Program at the Harvard Business School, and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. In 2022, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Laws by the University of Wollongong for his contribution to the maritime security of Australia and the Indo-Pacific region.

Maj Carignan

Maj Cody “Pinky” Carignan

Royal Canadian Air Force

Maj Carignan is an RCAF Air Battle Manager with over 1,500 combat hours supporting coalition operations in the Middle East. He has served as the Squadron Weapons and Tactics Officer for the Canadian Air Defence Sector (CADS), as the Chief of Training and Chief of Standards and Evaluations for the 729th Air Control Squadron, and has executed the duties of the CENTCOM Regional Air Defence Commander in his role as a Mission Commander with the 727th Expeditionary Air Control Squadron. Maj Carignan is a graduate of the RCAF Fighter Weapons Instructor Course (FWIC) and a USAF CAF Mission Commander. He is currently assigned to the NORAD-Continental Defence Modernization Office as the Deputy Project Director for the RCAF’s Future Combined Air Operations Centre Capability (FCC) Project.


Lieutenant-Colonel Jean Leymarie

RCAF Aerospace Warefare Center Concept Development


  • Operation “Pamir” – Kandahar, Afghanistan 2008
  • Exercise “Green Flag” – Barksdale AFB, USA 2010
  • Exercise “Tactical Leadership Program” – Albacete AFB, Spain 2011
  • Operation “Harmatan” – Souda AFB, Greece 2011
  • Operation “Chammal” – BAP H5, Jordan 2016


  • Knight of the Légion d’Honneur
  • Officer of the Ordre National du Mérite
  • Cross for military valor with one silver gilt, one silver and two bronze stars
  • Commendation, Strategic Air Forces, Bronze
  • Combatant’s cross
  • Overseas medal with “Middle east” clasp
  • National defence medal gold grade with “French Air Force” and “Overseas Operations” clasps
  • Medal of the nation’s gratitude with “Overseas Operations” clasp
  • French commemorative medal with “Libya” and “Afghanistan” clasps
  • Medal for the military protection of the territory with Jupiter clasp;
  • NATO non-article 5 medal with “OUP Libya” clasp
  • NATO non-article 5 medal with “ISAF Afghanistan”

Professor Gary Hogan AM, CSC


Gary is a former Head of Military Intelligence and Director-General of Scientific and Technical Analysis in the Australian Defence Department. He is a graduate of the Chinese National Defence University and taught China Studies on faculty at the US National Defense University, Washington DC. He was Australia’s first Defence Attaché to the Socialist Republic of Vietnam and the first foreigner to graduate from Indonesia’s National College of Governance. He served three years as Defence Head at the Australian Embassy in Jakarta. He speaks Mandarin, Vietnamese, and Bahasa Indonesia. Gary is a member of the Order of Australia and was awarded the Conspicuous Service Cross while on operational service in the Middle East with US Special Operations Command. His foreign decorations include the US Legion of Merit and the Grand Meritorious Military Order of Indonesia. Following a distinguished military career, Gary served seven years on the Council of Australia’s largest tertiary institution, the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology. He worked as Senior Adviser for Defence and National Security at professional services firm KPMG, before joining the staff of Victoria’s then Defence Advocate, Greg Combet. He was appointed Enterprise Professor for Industry Engagement at the University of Melbourne, where he ran Australia’s only national PhD internship program, placing more than 400 PhD candidates from 32 universities into internships with over 120 government and industry partners. As a member of Melbourne-based consultancy CIS, Gary was Interim CEO of a CRC proposal in the “Care Economy”, helping to build a consortium across six universities and 80 industry partners, attracting over $100M in cash and in-kind funding. As manager of the Health Centre of Excellence at the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade), he led the areas of MedTech, Digital Health and Military Medicine, assisting Australian companies seeking offshore markets and overseas companies seeking Australian partners. He has served on the Northern Territory Government’s Defence and National Security Advisory Group and as an adviser at market intelligence house, DefenceConnect. He is currently Professor of Business Analytics at the University of Newcastle and Managing Director of space exploration company “Lunaria.One”. Gary’s superpower is utilising his linguistic experience to translate between the cryptically unintelligible languages of government, the private sector and Higher Education.

Lieutenant-Colonel David Dunwoody

Deputy Director for Data & Analytics Enablement, Royal Canadian Air Force

Lieutenant-Colonel David Dunwoody joined the Royal Canadian Air Force in 1991 as a reservist and Aircraft Instrument Electrician with 402 Squadron. In 1998, he transferred into the regular force as an Air Navigator. Upon earning his wings in 2002, he was posted to 14 Wing Greenwood, Nova Scotia to serve on the CP-140 Aurora as an acoustic sensor operator. In 2007, he attended the Aerospace Systems Course at the Canadian Forces School of Aerospace Studies (CFSAS) at 17 Wing Winnipeg and authored a technical paper on a Human Centred Approach to Uninhabited Aerial Vehicle Operations. In 2008, LCol Dunwoody was posted to 14 Software Engineering Squadron as the Senior Operational and Liaison Acceptance Officer supporting the maintenance of the CP-140 mission software. 2012 saw him posted to 1 Canadian Forces Flying Training School (1 CFFTS) at 17 Wing Winnipeg. In 2013, he was promoted to major and served as the school’s Operational and Technical Support Flight Commander. In 2016, LCol Dunwoody was posted to the Canadian Forces School of Aerospace Studies as the chair for the Department of Aerospace Capability Development and the Deputy Commandant. 2020 he was posted to the Chief of Force Development coordinating the defence capability board and the future force for joint targeting. In 2022, LCol Dunwoody was assigned as the Senior Aide-de-Camp to the Governor General of Canada. 2023, he was promoted to his current rank and posted to the Digital Transformation Office as the Deputy Director for Data & Analytics Enablement. LCol Dunwoody has deployed twice to Afghanistan for Operation ATHENA and once to Kuwait for Operation IMPACT. During his second tour with Op ATHENA, LCol Dunwoody operated the CU-170 Heron flying over 450 hours of in theatre operations. LCol Dunwoody has a master in Information Systems from Athabasca University and is beginning his PhD studies at the University of Toronto with an aim to research AI Trust in human-machine systems.

Siegfried USAL

VP, Digital Innovation, Thales North America General Manager and General Manager of Thales Digital Solutions

n 2017, Siegfried Usal co-founded cortAIx in Canada, Thales’ operational centre for research and technology in intelligent and expert agents. Today, he is CEO and founder of Thales Digital Solutions, an industrial laboratory responsible for designing and developing human-centric AI in the defence and aerospace sectors. In this capacity, he guides and directs the technology development strategy towards applications specific to collaborative combat and autonomous systems for ethical and responsible use of defence and aerospace assets.

A graduate of the French Air Force Academy and the Canadian Forces College, Siegfried holds a degree in Aeronautical Engineering, a Master’s degree in Aeromechanics and a Master’s degree in Defence Studies. A fighter pilot in France and Canada, Siegfried has over 2,500 hours of flying time on Mirage 2000 and CF-18 aircraft and has flown 75 war missions. A former colonel in the French Air Force, he has held several senior positions in the presidential cabinet of the French Republic and at the French Embassy in Canada.

Siegfried Usal is a Knight of the Legion of Honour, Officer of the National Order of Merit, Croix de Guerre in the order of the Air Division, holder of the General Service Medal (Canada) and the General Campaign Star (Canada).