Current senior Australian Defence Organisation personnel

The Australian Defence Organisation (ADO) is composed of the armed forces of the Commonwealth of Australia, the Australian Defence Force (ADF), and the Australian Public Service government department, the Department of Defence which is composed of a range of civilian support organisations.

The Chief of the Defence Force (CDF) leads the Australian Defence Force and the Secretary of Defence leads the Department of Defence though both jointly manage the Australian Defence Organisation under a diarchy, and both report directly to the Minister for Defence.

The highest active rank in the Australian Defence Force is reserved for the Chief of the Defence Force. This is a four-star rank and the CDF is the only Australian military officer at that level. As a result of the diarchy, the Secretary of the Department of Defence is of the equivalent civilian four-star level in the Senior Executive Service of the Australian Public Service.

Command and Control

The Commander-in-Chief of the Australian Defence Force is set out under Section 68 of the Constitution of Australia, stating "the command in chief of the naval and military forces of the Commonwealth is vested in the Governor-General as the Queen's representative".

In practice, the Governor-General is the ceremonial head of the Australian Defence Force and command and control power is delegated to the Prime Minister and the Minister for Defence. The National Security Committee of Cabinet also plays an important role in the strategic direction of the Australian Defence Organisation including directing overseas deployments and going to war.

Five-star level

Currently the five-star level is not an active serving rank in the Australian Defence Force. Australia has only had one active serving five-star rank officer within the armed forces of the Commonwealth of Australia. This was Sir Thomas Blamey who was appointed Field Marshal in the Australian Army in 1950 and presented his field marshal's baton by the then Governor-General William McKell. Blamey was seriously ill at the time and died three months later.

Currently, His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh maintains the ranks of Field Marshal, Admiral of the Fleet, and Marshal of the Royal Australian Air Force. He was appointed to each rank in 2 April 1954.

His Majesty George VI was also appointed Marshal of the Royal Australian Air Force, maintaining the rank from the 2 June 1939 until his death in 6 February 1952.

Four-star level

In the Australian Defence Force, guided by the Defence Force Regulations 1952, the level of four-star rank is that of commissioned officer O-10 in the Australian Defence Force ranks code. This means the Australian Army rank of general, the Royal Australian Navy rank of admiral, and the Royal Australian Air Force rank of air chief marshal.

In the Australian Public Service, guided by the Public Service Act 1999, the level of four-star rank is the equivalent civilian level of Senior Executive Service Band 4, which is styled as secretary with the leadership of a department.

Three-star level

In the Australian Defence Force, guided by the Defence Force Regulations 1952, the level of three-star rank is that of commissioned officer O-9 in the Australian Defence Force ranks code. This means the Australian Army rank of lieutenant general, the Royal Australian Navy rank of vice admiral, and the Royal Australian Air Force rank of air marshal.

In the Australian Public Service, guided by the Public Service Act 1999, the level of three-star rank is the equivalent civilian level of Senior Executive Service Band 3, which is styled as associate secretary or deputy secretary (DEPSEC) or a chief portfolio officer, with the leadership of a group or agency.

Australian Defence Force

Department of Defence

Two-star level

In the Australian Defence Force, guided by the Defence Force Regulations 1952, the level of two-star rank is that of commissioned officer O-8 in the Australian Defence Force ranks code. This means the Australian Army rank of Major General, the Royal Australian Navy rank of rear admiral, and the Royal Australian Air Force rank of Air Vice Marshal.

In the Australian Public Service, guided by the Public Service Act 1999, the level of two-star rank is the equivalent civilian level of Senior Executive Service Band 2 which is styled as First Assistant Secretary (FAS), General Manager, Chief or Head with the leadership of a Division or Agency.

Vice Chief of the Defence Force Group

  • Head of Force Design
  • Head of Centenary of ANZAC
  • Head of Joint Capability Management and Integration
  • Head of Military Strategic Commitments
  • Head of Reserve and Youth and Commander of the Australian Defence Force Cadets
  • Executive Director of the Australian Civil-Military Centre

Joint Capabilities Group

Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group

  • Head of Joint Systems
  • Head of Maritime Systems
  • General Manager for Submarines
  • Head of Future Submarine Program
  • General Manager for Ships
  • Head of Land Systems
  • Head of Helicopter Systems
  • Head of Aerospace Systems
  • Head of Joint Strike Fighter Program
  • General Counsel and First Assistant Secretary for Commercial
  • First Assistant Secretary for Program Performance
  • Group Business Manager
  • Chief Finance Officer

Strategic Policy and Intelligence Group

Australian Army

Joint Operations Command

Royal Australian Navy

Royal Australian Air Force

Defence Science and Technology Group

  • Chief of Science Strategy and Program
  • Chief of Science Partnerships and Engagement
  • Chief of Research Services
  • Chief of Maritime
  • Chief of Land
  • Chief of Aerospace
  • Chief of Joint and Operations Analysis
  • Chief of National Security and Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance
  • Chief of Cyber and Electronic Warfare
  • Chief of Weapons and Combat Systems

Chief Information Officer Group

  • Chief Technology Officer
  • Head of ICT Operations
  • First Assistant Secretary for ICT Delivery

Defence People Group

  • First Assistant Secretary for People Capability
  • First Assistant Secretary for People Policy and Culture
  • First Assistant Secretary for People Services

Defence Estate and Infrastructure Group

  • First Assistant Secretary for Service Delivery
  • First Assistant Secretary for Infrastructure

Chief Finance Officer Group

  • First Assistant Secretary for Financial Services
  • First Assistant Secretary for Resource and Assurance

Associate Secretary Group

  • First Assistant Secretary for Ministerial and Executive Coordination and Communication
  • First Assistant Secretary for Governance and Reform
  • First Assistant Secretary for Audit and Fraud Control
  • First Assistant Secretary for Security and Vetting Service
  • Inspector General
  • Judge Advocate General (JAG)
  • Chief Judge Advocate
  • Head of Defence Legal

See also

External links

Chief of Joint Operations (Australia)

The Chief of Joint Operations (CJOPS) is a three-star role within the Australian Defence Force (ADF), responsible the Joint Operations Command and joint operational deployments, such as United Nations peacekeeping and joint task groups. Until 2007, the Vice Chief of the Defence Force (VCDF) was double hatted, additionally exercising the responsibilities of CJOPS. However, in September 2007 the Minister of Defence, Brendan Nelson announced the formation of a separate CJOPS position based at the Headquarters Joint Operations Command (HQJOC) at Bungendore, New South Wales.

Department of Defence (Australia)

The Department of Defence is a department of the Government of Australia charged with the responsibility to defend Australia and its national interests. Along with the Australian Defence Force (ADF), it forms part of the Australian Defence Organisation (ADO) and is accountable to the Commonwealth Parliament, on behalf of the Australian people, for the efficiency and effectiveness with which it carries out the Government's defence policy.

The head of the Department, who leads it on a daily basis, is the Secretary of the Department of Defence (SECDEF), currently Greg Moriarty. The Secretary reports to the Minister of Defence, currently The Hon. Linda Reynolds MP, following appointment by Prime Minister Scott Morrison in May 2019.

Senior Australian Defence Organisation Positions

The Australian Defence Organisation (ADO) is composed of the armed forces of the Commonwealth of Australia, the Australian Defence Force (ADF), and the Australian Public Service government department, the Department of Defence which is composed of a range of civilian support organisations.

The Chief of the Defence Force (CDF) leads the Australian Defence Force and the Secretary of Defence leads the Department of Defence though both jointly manage the Australian Defence Organisation under a diarchy, and both report directly to the Minister for Defence.

The highest active rank in the Australian Defence Force is reserved for the Chief of the Defence Force. This is a four-star rank and the CDF is the only Australian military officer at that level. As a result of the diarchy, the Secretary of the Department of Defence is of the equivalent civilian four-starlevel in the Senior Executive Service of the Australian Public Service.

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