Chief of the Defence Force (Australia)

The Chief of the Defence Force (CDF) is the professional head of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) and the most senior uniformed military adviser to the Minister for Defence. The current Chief of the Defence Force is General Angus Campbell, who took office on 6 July 2018.

Chief of the Defence Force
Chief of ADF flag
Lt General Angus Campbell in 2017
Incumbent
Angus Campbell

since 6 July 2018
StyleAdmiral
General
Air Chief Marshal
AbbreviationCDF
Member ofAustralian Defence Force
Reports toMinister for Defence
Term lengthFour years[1]
Formation23 March 1958
First holderLieutenant General
Sir Henry Wells
WebsiteOfficial website

Responsibilities

The CDF commands the ADF under the direction of the Minister for Defence and provides advice on matters that relate to military activity, including military operations.[2] In a diarchy, the CDF serves as co-chairman of the Defence Committee, conjointly with the Secretary of Defence, in the command and control of the Australian Defence Organisation.[3]

The CDF is the Australian equivalent position of what in NATO and the European Union is known as the Chief of Defence, in the United Kingdom is known as the Chief of the Defence Staff, and in the United States is known as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, although with the latter prohibited by law from having operational command authority over the US Armed Forces.[4]

Constitutionally, the Governor-General of Australia, is the de jure Commander-in-Chief of the Australian Defence Force. However, in practice, the Australian Government de facto exercises executive power via the Federal Executive Council.[5] The CDF is appointed by the Governor-General on the advice of his/her ministers. The appointment is politically neutral, as are all military positions, and not affected by a change of government.

Since 4 July 2014, the CDF is appointed for a fixed four-year term under the Defence Act (1903). Prior to this date, the appointment was for three years.[1] The position of CDF is notionally rotated between the Royal Australian Navy, the Australian Army and the Royal Australian Air Force. However, in practice this has not been the case; of eighteen appointees, nine have been from the Army, five from the Navy and four from the Air Force.[6] The current Chief of the Defence Force is General Angus Campbell.

During peacetime, the Chief of the Defence Force is the only four-star officer in the ADF (admiral, general, or air chief marshal). The CDF is assisted by the Vice Chief of the Defence Force (VCDF) and serves as the Chairman of the Chiefs of Service Committee, composed of the service chiefs: the Chief of Navy (CN), Chief of Army (CA), and Chief of Air Force (CAF), all of whom are three-star officers (vice admiral, lieutenant general, and air marshal), as is the VCDF.

History

Prior to 1958 there was no CDF or equivalent; a Chiefs of Staff Committee (COSC) existed but no separate position was established as its senior officer. Instead, the senior service chief served as Chairman of the Chiefs of Staff Committee.[7] In March 1958, Lieutenant General Sir Henry Wells was appointed Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee, a role independent of and notionally senior to the Army, Navy and Air Force chiefs. However, Wells and his successors did not command the Australian armed forces in any legal sense; the chairman had only an advisory role in the running of the separate services. In February 1976, COSC was dissolved and the new position of Chief of Defence Force Staff (CDFS) was created with command authority over the ADF. In October 1984 the position was renamed Chief of the Defence Force to more clearly reflect the role and its authority.[8]

Appointments

The following list chronologically records those who have held the post of Chief of the Defence Force or its preceding positions. The official title of the position at that period of time is listed immediately before the officers who held the role. The honours are as at the completion of the individual's term.

Name Took office Left office Time in office Defence branch
Chairman, Chiefs of Staff Committee
1
Sir Henry Wells KBE, CB, DSO
Lieutenant General
Sir Henry Wells KBE, CB, DSO
(1898–1973)
23 March 195822 March 1959364 days Army
2
Sir Roy Dowling KBE, CB, DSO, RAN
Vice Admiral
Sir Roy Dowling KBE, CB, DSO, RAN
(1901–1969)
23 March 195927 May 19612 years, 65 days Navy
3
Sir Frederick Scherger KBE, CB, DSO, AFC
Air Chief Marshal
Sir Frederick Scherger KBE, CB, DSO, AFC
(1904–1984)
28 May 196118 May 19664 years, 355 days Air force
4
Sir John Wilton KBE, CB, DSO
General
Sir John Wilton KBE, CB, DSO
(1910–1981)
19 May 196622 November 19704 years, 187 daysArmy
5
Sir Victor Smith AC, KBE, CB, DSC, RAN
Admiral
Sir Victor Smith AC, KBE, CB, DSC, RAN
(1913–1998)
23 November 197023 November 19755 years, 0 daysNavy
6
Frank Hassett AC, CB, CBE, DSO, LVO
General
Frank Hassett AC, CB, CBE, DSO, LVO
(1918–2008)
24 November 19758 February 197676 daysArmy
Chief of Defence Force Staff
6
Sir Frank Hassett AC, KBE, CB, DSO, LVO
General
Sir Frank Hassett AC, KBE, CB, DSO, LVO
(1918–2008)
9 February 197620 April 19771 year, 70 daysArmy
7
Sir Arthur MacDonald KBE, CB
General
Sir Arthur MacDonald KBE, CB
(1919–1995)
21 April 197720 April 19791 year, 364 daysArmy
8
Sir Anthony Synnot KBE, AO, RAN
Admiral
Sir Anthony Synnot KBE, AO, RAN
(1922–2001)
21 April 197920 April 19822 years, 364 daysNavy
9
Sir Neville McNamara KBE, AO, AFC, AE
Air Chief Marshal
Sir Neville McNamara KBE, AO, AFC, AE
(1923–2014)
21 April 198212 April 19841 year, 357 daysAir force
10
Sir Phillip Bennett AC, KBE, DSO
General
Sir Phillip Bennett AC, KBE, DSO
(born 1928)
13 April 198425 October 1984195 daysArmy
Chief of the Defence Force
10
Sir Phillip Bennett AC, KBE, DSO
General
Sir Phillip Bennett AC, KBE, DSO
(born 1928)
26 October 198412 April 19872 years, 168 daysArmy
11
Peter Gration AC, OBE
General
Peter Gration AC, OBE
(born 1932)
13 April 198716 April 19936 years, 3 daysArmy
12
Alan Beaumont AC, RAN
Admiral
Alan Beaumont AC, RAN
(1934–2004)
17 April 19936 July 19952 years, 80 daysNavy
13
John Baker AC, DSM
General
John Baker AC, DSM
(1936–2007)
7 July 19953 July 19982 years, 361 daysArmy
14
Chris Barrie AC, RAN
Admiral
Chris Barrie AC, RAN
(born 1945)
4 July 19983 July 20023 years, 364 daysNavy
15
Peter Cosgrove AC, MC
General
Peter Cosgrove AC, MC
(born 1947)
4 July 20023 July 20052 years, 364 daysArmy
16
Angus Houston AC, AFC
Air Chief Marshal
Angus Houston AC, AFC
(born 1947)
4 July 20053 July 20115 years, 364 daysAir force
17
David Hurley AC, DSC
General
David Hurley AC, DSC
(born 1953)
4 July 201130 June 20142 years, 361 daysArmy
18
Mark Binskin AC
Air Chief Marshal
Mark Binskin AC
(born 1960)
30 June 20146 July 20184 years, 6 daysAir force
19
Angus Campbell AO, DSC
General
Angus Campbell AO, DSC
6 July 2018Incumbent1 year, 43 daysArmy

Living current and former Chiefs of the Defence Force

The honours listed below are updated as the former/current living chief receives them.

Rank Name Born
General Sir Philip Bennett AC, KBE, DSO 27 December 1928 (age 90)
General Peter Gration AC, OBE, FTSE 6 January 1932 (age 87)
Admiral Chris Barrie AC, RAN 29 May 1945 (age 74)
General The Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove AK, CVO, MC 28 July 1947 (age 72)
Air Chief Marshal Sir Angus Houston AK, AFC 9 June 1947 (age 72)
General The Honourable David Hurley AC, DSC, FTSE 26 August 1953 (age 65)
Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin AC 20 March 1960 (age 59)
General Angus Campbell AO, DSC

Timeline

References

  1. ^ a b "New Australian Defence Force Command Team" (Press release). Office of the Prime Minister of Australia. 4 April 2014. Retrieved 30 June 2014.
  2. ^ "Chief of the Defence Force – Roles and Responsibilities". Department of Defence. Retrieved 8 January 2016.
  3. ^ "The Secretary and Chief of the Defence Force – "the Diarchy"". Department of Defence. Retrieved 8 January 2016.
  4. ^ [1] 10 USC 152. Chairman: appointment; grade and rank
  5. ^ "Federal Executive Council Handbook". Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet. Commonwealth of Australia. September 2009. ISBN 0-9752387-2-8. Archived from the original on 27 April 2015. Retrieved 7 January 2015.
  6. ^ "Chief of the Defence Force: Previous Chiefs". Department of Defence. Archived from the original on 30 January 2009. Retrieved 29 March 2008.
  7. ^ Rowell, Full Circle, p. 178
  8. ^ Horner, David (2002). "The Evolution of Australian Higher Command Arrangements". Command Papers. Canberra: Centre for Defence Leadership Studies, Australian Defence College. Archived from the original on 16 July 2012.

External links

Anzac Day

Anzac Day () is a national day of remembrance in Australia and New Zealand that broadly commemorates all Australians and New Zealanders "who served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations" and "the contribution and suffering of all those who have served". Observed on 25 April each year, Anzac Day was originally devised to honour the members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) who served in the Gallipoli Campaign, their first engagement in the First World War (1914–1918).

Arthur MacDonald

General Sir Arthur Leslie MacDonald, (30 January 1919 – 20 January 1995) was a senior officer in the Australian Army, who served in the positions of Chief of the General Staff from 1975 to 1977, then Chief of the Defence Force Staff from 1977 to 1979; the professional head of the Australian Army and Australian Defence Force respectively.

CDFA (disambiguation)

CDFA is the California Department of Food and Agriculture.

CDFA may also refer to:

Community Development Finance Association

CDFA, an entertainment distribution subsidiary of Shock Records

CDFA, Faoileann Records catalogue numbers for Shaskeen

Chief of the Defence Force

Chief of the Defence Force may refer to:

Chief of the Defence Force (Australia)

Chief of the Defence Staff (Canada)

Chief of Defence Forces (Kenya)

Chief of Defence Forces (Malaysia)

Chief of Defence Force (Maldives)

Chief of the Defence Force (Namibia)

Chief of Defence Force (New Zealand)

Chief of Defence Force (Singapore)

Chief of Defence Forces (Thailand)

Chief of Defence Forces (Uganda)

Chief of the Defence Staff (Canada)

The Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS; French: chef d'état-major de la Défense) is the second most senior member of the Canadian Armed Forces (after the commander-in-chief) and heads the Armed Forces Council, having primary responsibility for command, control, and administration of the forces, as well as military strategy, plans, and requirements. The position is held by a senior member of one of the three main branches of the Canadian Armed Forces. The current CDS, since 17 July 2015, is Jonathan Vance.

Jon Stanhope

Jonathan Donald Stanhope (born 29 April 1951) is a former Australian politician who was Labor Chief Minister of the Australian Capital Territory from 2001 to 2011. Stanhope represented the Ginninderra electorate in the ACT Legislative Assembly from 1998 until 2011. He is the only ACT Chief Minister to have governed with a majority in the ACT Assembly. From 2012 to 2014 Stanhope was Administrator of the Australian Indian Ocean Territories, which consists of Christmas Island and Cocos (Keeling) Islands.

Lieutenant general (Australia)

Lieutenant general (abbreviated LTGEN and pronounced 'lef-tenant general') is the second-highest active rank of the Australian Army. It was created as a direct equivalent of the British military rank of lieutenant general, and is considered a three-star rank.

The rank of lieutenant general is held by the Chief of Army. The rank is also held when an army officer is the Vice Chief of the Defence Force, the Chief of Joint Operations, or the Chief of Joint Capabilities. The Chief of Capability Development Group, disestablished in 2016, also carried three-star rank.

Lieutenant general is a higher rank than major general, but lower than general. Lieutenant general is the equivalent of vice admiral in the Royal Australian Navy and air marshal in the Royal Australian Air Force. The insignia for a lieutenant general is the Crown of St Edward above a crossed sword and baton.

National Defence College (India)

The National Defence College, located in New Delhi, is the highest seat of strategic learning for officers of the Indian Armed Forces and the Civil Services of India. This is a very prestigious course attended only by a few hand-picked defence officers of One-Star rank and civil servants of the rank of Joint secretary to the Government of India. Each year, approximately 25 officers from friendly foreign countries like the USA, UK, Canada, France, Germany, Australia, Vietnam, Sri Lanka, Nepal, UAE and others attend the course.This college provides strategic leadership to the Government of India in national and international security matters and also acts as a think tank on defence matters and holds a very important position in shaping up the Indian defence outlook.

Vice-Chief of the Defence Staff

Vice Chief of the Defence Staff (VCDS) is a post in many militaries. It may refer to:

Vice Chief of the Defence Force (Australia)

Vice Chief of the Defence Staff (Canada)

Vice Chief of Defence Force (New Zealand)

Vice-Chief of the Defence Staff (United Kingdom)

Vice Chief of the Defence Force (Australia)

The Vice Chief of the Defence Force (VCDF) is the military deputy to the Chief of the Defence Force (CDF) of Australia, and acts as the CDF in his absence under standing acting arrangements. Vice Admiral David Johnston, the incumbent VCDF, has held the position since 5 July 2018.

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