Lieutenant General Stephen Kelsey began his career in 1985 as a soldier in the Canadian Scottish Regiment. Commissioning into the 8th Canadian Hussars (Princess Louise's) in 1988, he first served under the NATO flag in Lahr, West Germany before the 'Wall' came down. He later joined his beloved Regiment Lord Strathcona's Horse (Royal Canadians) in 2000.
A proud tanker, his formative years were in command positions in the 80s and 90s with armoured reconnaissance and Leopard tank units in 4thand 1st Canadian Mechanized Brigade Groups.
Between 2010 and 2012 he commanded Western Area Training Centre before appointment as Deputy Commander Canadian Manoeuvre Training Centre. He was Director Armour 2013-2016.
Operational deployments include Croatia under the United Nations and twice in Afghanistan (2004 under ISAF; 2009 as part of the NATO Training Mission – Afghanistan). In 2015, he commanded Canadian Force Base Kingston before deploying to Iraq as Chief of Staff Combined Joint Force Land Component Command HQ. Between 2017 and 2020 was the Canadian Army Director General Land Capability Development and Chief of Staff Strategy. In 2020, he was appointed the Canadian Armed Forces' future force design agent as Chief Force Development.
Lieutenant General Kelsey is currently the Royal Canadian Armoured Corps' Senior Serving. He is a graduate of the National Security Program, holds a Masters in Conflict Analysis, has completed the Senior Executives in National and International Security program at Harvard, and is an alumni of the Baltic Defence College. He is a recipient of the US Legion of Merit, the French National Defence Medal Gold Echelon, and the Honorific Joint Decoration of the Defense Staff of Italy.
Lieutenant General Kelsey was appointed Allied Joint Force Command Naples, Deputy Commander on 3 June 2022.