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Change of command for Christchurch Reserve division

Portrait of new Commanding Officer of HMNZS PEGASUS Lieutenant Commander Christopher Stevens
The new Commanding Officer of HMNZS PEGASUS, Lieutenant Commander Christopher Stevens  (MC10-0299-034).

10 September 2010

A ceremony to mark the official change of Commanding Officer of the Christchurch Naval Reserve Personnel Division, HMNZS PEGASUS, will take place at 7.45pm on Monday 13 September 2010.

The Change of Command Ceremony is traditionally formal and impressive – designed to strengthen that respect for authority, which is vital to any military organisation. Deputy Chief of Navy, Commodore Bruce Pepperell, will review the ceremony.

The ceremony will be held at HMNZS PEGASUS Headquarters, 419 Montreal Street, Christchurch.
During the ceremony, Lieutenant Commander Tim Elley will relinquish command of HMNZS PEGASUS and Lieutenant Commander Christopher Stevens will assume command.

The heart of the ceremony is the passing of command upon utterance of the words “you have the Ship” by the outgoing officer followed by “I have the Ship” by the incoming officer.  At that time a new Commissioning Pennant – a symbol of command responsibility – will be handed to the incoming Commanding Officer, who will have it hoisted in his new Command.

Biography - Lieutenant Commander C.A. Stevens, RNZNVR

Lieutenant Commander Stevens was born and raised in Christchurch, New Zealand. He was a sea cadet at TS Steadfast from the age of 12, and joined the Royal New Zealand Naval Volunteer Reserve at HMNZS Pegasus on 22 April 1982 as an Ordinary Supply and Secretariat Assistant. Transferring to the Marine Engineering branch, in line with his civilian apprenticeship, Chris completed his trade and military training and commenced his career in the RNZNVR.

He has served in Seaward Defence Motor Launches Kuparu, Mako and Koura, Inshore Patrol craft Kiwi, Wakakura and Moa, Lake Class Patrol Craft Pukaki and Leander class Frigate Waikato. During this time Chris completed an NZCE mechanical and reached the rank of Chief Petty Officer Diesel Fitter.

Commissioned from the ranks in 2002, as a Lieutenant, Chris has served in Pegasus as the Recruiting Officer, Training Officer and Operations Officer while continuing to play a role at sea across the Reserve IPC Fleet. In 2007 Chris was promoted to Lieutenant Commander and appointed as the Executive Officer, HMNZS Pegasus.

Although he has served on many ships in the RNZN, Chris will tell you he holds a special place in his heart for HMNZS Kiwi, serving in her commissioning crew and having the privilege of being presented with her final Ensign by the Chief of Navy, Rear Admiral Ledson, at the ship’s decommissioning in 2008.

In 2009 Lt Cdr Stevens was one of two Reserve Force officers from New Zealand selected for overseas staff training. Completing his studies in 2010, he is a graduate of the Canadian Forces Command and Staff College in Toronto, Canada.

In his civilian career, Chris works for the Intercontinental Hotels Group as a hotel engineer.

Lieutenant Commander Stevens is married to Katrina and they have one son, Nicholas. They currently reside in Halswell, Christchurch.


The Naval Reserves Mission: To contribute to the Navy mission by providing competent Reserve personnel fit for service.  

For further information please contact Commander Rex Edwards, Regional Naval Officer on 03 353 4050.

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