By Mrs. Donna Klapakis (SDDC)March 21, 2017
WHEELER ARMY AIRFIELD, Hawaii -- Although other members of the 599th Transportation Brigade have taken a circuitous route to get to their current occupation, as a former Navy helicopter pilot, battle watch captain, director, deputy director, surfboard shaper, and boat builder, Charles Loiselle, the brigade director of administration and human resources is unique for variety.
Loiselle joined the Navy at the recruiting station on Bishop Street in 1991 because he wanted to fly. He was accepted into the aviation officer candidate program in April 1992 and received his wings in 1994 after completing flight school in Pensacola, Florida.
"Flight school was very intense," he said, "Every flight was an evaluation, but you come out of there as a really well-trained pilot."
Navy Cmdr. Alapaki Gomes, speechwriter at U.S. Pacific Fleet Headquarters, worked for Loiselle during his tour with Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron Light 37 at Marine Corps Base Hawaii, Kaneohe Bay, from 2004-2007.
"The first thing I remember was him coming up and saying, 'You have to do it like this and this and this,'" Gomes said. "But then as we got to know and work with him, it started tempering out. He clearly knew his job really well. The more you did things with him, the more you realized he's very laid back, just wants to get it right the first time.
"I would say he is just hard working, almost to a fault," Gomes said. "I cannot say enough how much I admire him and admire his spirit and tenacity.
"He was a great pilot. Flying with him, it was always a good learning experience."
Although Loiselle loved flying, he did less of it later in his Navy career.
"That's just career progression; flying takes a backseat to leadership roles in the officer community," Loiselle said.
He worked at U.S. Pacific Fleet as a battle watch captain.
"As a battle watch captain, we had to maintain situational awareness on all Pacific Fleet units," Loiselle said. "We had to deal with crisis management and send notifications to the admiral and to the Pentagon."
Following his time at Pacific Fleet, Loiselle was in charge of the Navy air traffic control facility for all Hawaiian Islands, Fleet Area Control and Surveillance Facility, on Ford Island at Pearl Harbor.
Loiselle's last military assignment was as the deputy director for Defense Information Systems Agency Pacific Field Command.
"I worked with human resources throughout my career, but during my time at DISA, I worked the plans and services division for a lot of civilians," he said. "I retired in 2015."
After retirement, he was director of human resources for a civilian airline.
"The reason I hired him was that he interviewed very well," said Larry Stephens, 599th deputy to the commander. "Looking at his resume, you could see he was very accomplished, and he had added to his professional toolbox throughout his career. His answers during the interview were very well organized and well thought out. He synthesized the questions quickly and provided thorough answers."
At the 599th, Loiselle maintains a comprehensive outlook on personnel and administration.
"His job is a very difficult onramp, but he charged up it," said Stephens. "He is the supervisor of our HR section, but he doesn't just supervise. He goes into details. He understands what the business rules are and the outputs and requirements."
"Here I've built on a foundation that was in place from the people who went before me," Loiselle said. "We've built up the team with battalion S1s to create a relationship with their CPACs (Civilian Personnel Advisory Centers) and our CPAC here. We want to make sure we are hiring the right people and are taking care of the people that we already have."
The brigade commander appreciates this approach.
"He has been a tremendous asset to the brigade since his arrival," said Col. James Smith, 599th commander. "I am most impressed with his firm grasp of our civilian hiring actions. This ensures we remain on task as we execute Phase One (Get Ready) of the SDDC commanding general's R.E.A.D.Y. campaign."
Loiselle still has his pilot's license and a rating in helicopters. He takes full advantage of the Hawaiian lifestyle and enjoys surfing, spear fishing, and motorcycle riding.
"One thing he always said he wanted to do was make surfboards, and then he went and did it," said Gomes. "He shaped several of my surfboards, and I love them to death. He is very gifted at all types of woodworking."
"I enjoy and try to take advantage of the history of Oahu with respect to the armed forces -- the Utah, Arizona and Missouri memorials, the Pacific Fleet Boathouse," Loiselle said. "We even did a reenlistment ceremony jumping out of a plane over the North Shore. I hope that all Soldiers and Sailors take advantage of all the historic locations on Oahu to make their ceremonies more meaningful."