SMI Mills joined the Army Cadets in 2007 as an instructor with Ardersier Detachment where is was later appointed as the Detachment’s Commander, in 2010 Eric transferred to Nairn Detachment as an instructor. SMI Mills is a key member of the Battalion’s Shooting Team, training cadets of both Moray Company and the Battalion in preparation for the various shooting competitions the cadets can take part in, which has also seen Eric take cadets down for the Inter-Service Cadet Rifle Meet held at Bisley Ranges in Surrey which sees cadets compete against cadets from across the UK – as well as international teams from Canada and Hong Kong. SMI Mills’ leadership and management abilities of the cadets and fellow adults was recognised in 2017 with his appointment has the Battalion’s Regimental Sergeant Major, a position he held until 2019.
SMI McDonald, who is the Nairn Detachment Commander, has been part of the Battalion in some capacity since the 80’s, started his career as a young cadet. After taking some time out away from the cadets when he aged out as a cadet he re-joined as an Adult Instructor for Nairn in 1988, where is has been ever since. SMI McDonald was appointed as the Detachment Commander for the detachment back in 2000. Jonathan’s dedication to the young people of the Highlands was recognised in the 2015 Queen’s Birthday Honours where he received the British Empire Medal.
The Cadet Force Warrant was created in August 2020 after consent from the Defence Minister and is designed to recognise the value placed by the Ministry of Defence on the Senior Non-Commissioned Adults within the UK’s Cadet Forces. The new warrant will be presented to all adult volunteers on promotion to Sergeant Major Instructor in the Army Cadets and their equivalent within the other Cadet Services, this includes those who have already achieved and holds the rank of SMI, to highlight the effort, achievement and the commitment required to reach this rank.
Both Jonathan and Eric were presented with their warrants on Wednesday 13 October, by the Battalion’s Commandant Colonel Mike MacDonald, at the Nairn Detachment Cadet Centre on John Street.