Navy’s newest leaders graduate from the Australian Defence Force Academy

This article has photo gallery Published on Department of Defence (author), AHC Studios (photographer)

Topic(s): Australian Defence Force Academy

ADFA's graduating class of 2017 throw their hats in the air to symbolise completion of three years military training and academic studies. (photo: AHC Studios)
ADFA's graduating class of 2017 throw their hats in the air to symbolise completion of three years military training and academic studies.

Over 260 Midshipmen and Officer Cadets graduated from the Australian Defence Force Academy in Canberra today, prepared to serve our nation with distinction.

The Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia, His Excellency General the Honourable Sir Peter Cosgrove, AK, MC was joined by the Minister for Defence, Senator the Honourable Marise Payne, the Chief of the Defence Force, Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin, AC, and other distinguished guests and families at the annual Graduation Parade.

The Commandant of the Australian Defence Force Academy, Brigadier Cheryl Pearce, said the dedication and maturity of the 2017 graduating class will ensure they excel as leaders in the Australian Defence Force. 

“This Parade marks the culmination of three years’ hard work across military training and academic study,” Brigadier Pearce said.

“The Australian Defence Force Academy has provided these Midshipmen and Officer Cadets with the skills and knowledge to progress to the next stage of their military careers and put into practice ethical and values-based leadership.

“I am privileged to be part of this unique tri-service military training establishment responsible for the education of the young men and women who are the future of our Defence Force.

“These graduates will make excellent young Navy, Army and Air Force officers and I look forward to seeing where their careers will take them.” 

The Governor-General presented the Academy’s prestigious Commander in Chief Award to Officer Cadet Tom Darzins. The medal and sword were presented for exceptional performance by a graduate in the fields of military and academic achievement. 

In addition, the Minister for Defence presented the Citizenship Award to Midshipman Emma Finucan. Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin presented the Chief of the Defence Force Sword of Honour for Leadership to Officer Cadet Riley Brassil, and Major General Wilkie, Commander Australian Defence College, presented the Returned Services League Sword of Honour for Service to Midshipman Matthew Newman. 

Midshipman Thomas Fathers, Officer Cadet Hugh Connell, and Officer Cadet Andrew Haes were awarded the Chief of Navy, Chief of Army and Chief of Air Force Prizes respectively.

The Midshipmen and Officer Cadets who graduated today will be posted to establishments around Australia to continue their training or commence operational duties.