In early March 2000, The Honourable Arthur E. Eggleton, Minister of National Defence, announced the appointment of Colonel Paul F. Hughes, CD as Honorary Lieutenant Colonel of The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada.
Following short engagements in the RCAF (Auxiliary) and the RCNR, Colonel Hughes joined the 3rd Battalion of The Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada in Toronto as a Rifleman in 1962. He was commissioned a year later and served with the 3rd Battalion for 15 years as Adjutant, Company Commander and Deputy Commanding Officer until 1977 when his civilian job took him to Calgary.
In Calgary, Colonel Hughes served with the Southern Alberta Militia District and Western Militia Area until 1982 when he was appointed Commanding Officer of the Calgary Highlanders. On termination of that appointment he assumed command of Southern Alberta Militia District until his transfer to the Supplementary Reserve in 1987.
Colonel Hughes continued to maintain a strong interest in the Militia with active involvement with the Alberta Army Cadet League, The Queen’s Own Rifles Association in Calgary, and the Regimental Trust Fund.
A graduate of Queen’s University with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Political Science, Colonel Hughes worked for a brief time at Bell Canada as a management trainee before joining Xerox Canada Limited as a marketing representative. He remained with Xerox for 30 years holding a variety of management positions in Toronto and Calgary until his retirement in 1991.
After “retirement” Colonel Hughes became Vice President of Mark Staffing Solutions, Inc., a company founded by his wife Beverley and now jointly owned by them. Under their creative leadership, Mark Staffing Solutions grew to a multi-million dollar operation employing 20 people and one of the largest suppliers of staffing in Calgary.
Colonel Hughes stepped down as Honorary Colonel on November 29, 2012 when he was succeeded by Honorary Colonel Lawrence Stevenson.
In 2020 he was awarded the Regimental Lifetime Achievement Award by the Regimental Senate.
He died in Calgary, Alberta on 8 January 2022.