Maritime Component Commander (MCC)
Commodore James (Jim) Gilmour, RNZN
The Maritime Component Commander commands the fleet of Navy ships that regularly deploys overseas and around New Zealand to protect and support New Zealand’s interests.
Commodore Gilmour is an officer in the Royal New Zealand Navy (RNZN) whose 31 year career has included: ship navigation, helicopter aviation, senior staff appointments, major fleet unit command, Deputy Maritime Component Commander, senior staff training, and most recently; directorship of New Zealand Defence Force capability delivery. He was Commander Combined Task Force 151 between July and October 2011. This Task Force is responsible for counter piracy operations in the South Red Sea, Gulf of Aden and the Somali Basin.
Joining the RNZN in 1985 Commodore Gilmour spent the next five years conducting operational training including bridge watch keeping, helicopter approach control officer and navigational training. In 1989 he was appointed as the Navigating Officer of Her Majesty’s New Zealand Ship WAIKATO (FFH55).
Commodore Gilmour was selected for pilot training in 1990 and spent the next 14 years engaged in aviation related roles including; exchange with Royal New Zealand Air force’s No. 3 Squadron, Flight Commander of HMNZ Ships WAIKATO and WELLINGTON (FFH69) where he completed a tour within the Arabian Gulf in support of Operation Desert Shield in 1995. His career in aviation included a posting to the Royal Australian Navy’s 723 Squadron as a Helicopter Flying Instructor before returning to New Zealand and assuming command of the RNZN’s helicopter support squadron (formerly Naval Support Flight, now known as No. 6 Squadron RNZAF). During his term he oversaw the introduction to service of the SH2G(NZ) Super Seasprite helicopter.
After his time in command of the Naval Support Squadron, Commodore Gilmour was posted to Naval Headquarters where he assumed the duties of: Director of Naval Capability Requirements and Director Naval Aviation. During this period he was heavily involved with Project Protector which ultimately saw the introduction to service of seven new ships in the RNZN including the Multi-Role Vessel HMNZS CANTERBURY.
Commodore Gilmour was posted to secondments to Task Group and Task Force staff appointments including: SO1 N5 (lead long term planner) to the Maritime Component Commander for Exercise Suman Protector in Penang Malaysia and as Chief of Staff to the Commander Task Force for the Royal Australian Navy’s annual Fleet Concentration Period.
He completed the Royal Navy’s Maritime Warfare Course in 2008 which concentrated on development of maritime operational and tactical planning.
Commodore Gilmour commanded HMNZS CANTERBURY (L421) for two and a half years where he oversaw the introduction to service of the ship’s amphibious and aviation capabilities. This period included numerous periods where the ship was deployed for exercises and operations where he assumed the duties of Commander Amphibious Task Force. CANTERBURY, under his command was involved in several HADR operations including; the Samoan Tsunami Relief and the response operation to the Canterbury (Christchurch) earthquake.
Commodore Gilmour was posted as the Captain Fleet Operational Support for the RNZN (a role that includes deputising for the Maritime Component Commander) in 2011 and was responsible for operational standards and was the RNZN deployable tactical commander.
He completed tertiary studies at the Australian Defence Force Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies which is associated with Deakin University in 2014 and took up the role of Director of Programme Delivery in 2015 and was responsible for, amongst other things, the introduction into service of new Defence Force capabilities.
Commodore Jim Gilmour - Biography [PDF]