Lieutenant, Royal New Zealand Navy

Chief of Defence Commandation
Lieutenant Julie FITZELL deployed to Afghanistan in 2005 as the NZPRT Logistics Liaison Officer to the US Brigade Headquarters in Regional Command East. Her primary role was to address logistics issues on behalf of the NZPRT, dealing directly with supporting agencies in Bagram and civilian contractors in Kabul. Lieutenant FITZELL secondary role saw her employed within the RC East Civil Military Operations Cell, tasked with establishing and maintaining relationships with Afghan government agencies and a multitude of civil contractors and coalition supporting agencies.  She routinely planned and executed the procurement and distribution of Humanitarian Assistance products and police equipment valued in the millions of dollars for all of eastern Afghanistan. This involved conducting negotiations for vehicles, HA kits and equipment, inspecting these items for quality and receipting them in bulk as well as organising teams of local labour and soldiers from RC East Support Platoons to break down the bulk items and then freight forward via local transport to ten of RC East’s Forward Operating Bases.  She drafted HA standard procedures to all units that provided critical guidance on how to request HQ support. She personally organised the assembly of several emergency HA shipments with less than 24 hours notice (one with only one hour notice) and ensured that these critically needed supplies were shipped immediately. She also prepared and shipped several emergency flood relief supply packages during the spring floods, and devised and coordinated a distribution plan for more than 200 pallets of police equipment to RC East PRTs. Throughout her tour, Lieutenant FITZELL maintained a positive attitude, constantly using her initiative to achieve practical solutions to complex problems and ensuring that her higher headquarters was kept appraised of all plans and actions.


Chief of Defence Commandation