Williams Foundation

Williams Foundation Board

The Sir Richard Williams Foundation conducts its operations independently and has no political or industry ties.

The Foundation's activities are directed by its Board. The Board welcomes participation from the broad cross-section of the Australian community. Groups wishing to comment on issues relevant to the Foundation's objectives are encouraged to contact the Board. Individuals are invited to join the Foundation; see the home page.

The Board comprises eminent aerospace leaders and security strategists.  Other service organisations, the RAAF Association, Army Aviation Association and the Fleet Air Arm Association are affiliated with the Foundation.

The Foundation's activities are directed and managed by its Board. The Board comprises up to 12 eminent aerospace leaders, security strategists and an Executive Officer.  Members' business affiliations are listed in their biographies.  Members are required to absent themselves from any discussion which might create a conflict of interest.

Air Marshal Geoff Brown AO (Retd)

Geoff Brown joined the RAAF in February 1980 after completing an Engineering degree.
He graduated from No.111 Pilots' Course in 1981 and was initially posted to 12SQN Amberley to fly Chinooks.  After three years at 12SQN he was posted to 2FTS Pearce and spent 18 months as a Flying Instructor before being posted to Central Flying School (CFS) East Sale in 1986.  While at CFS he was a member of the Roulettes aerobatic display team, from 1987-89.  He led the last Macchi team before they transitioned to the PC-9.

In 1990, he was posted to Williamtown for a Hornet conversion and then completed a short tour at 77SQN.  On promotion to SQNLDR in 1991, he was posted to 75SQN Tindal as a Flight Commander.  In 1993, Geoff was then posted to 77SQN as Executive Officer.  He completed RAAF Staff College in 1995 and was subsequently posted to Headquarters Air Command as Staff Officer Operational Evaluation.

From 1997 to 2000, Geoff Brown commanded No.3 Squadron.  He then completed F-111 conversion and assumed the position of Officer Commanding No.82 Wing in December 2000.  In 2003 he commanded all F/A-18 and C-130 operations in Operation Iraqi Freedom and was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia and a Legion of Merit for his service in the operation. 

He was Officer Commanding Airborne Early Warning and Control Systems Program Office from June 2003 until December 2004 and spent 2005 at the Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies. 
He then commanded Air Combat Group throughout 2006.  From Jan 2007 until Jun 2008 he was Director-General Capability Planning in Air Force Headquarters.  He was the Deputy Chief of Air Force from 30 June 2008 to 3 Jul 2011.

Air Marshal Brown was appointed Chief of Air Force on the 4 July 2011 and served in that role until July 2015. He was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) during his term as Chief of the Air Force.

He is currently Chairman of the Sir Richard Williams Foundation, Chairman of Advisory Board for CAE Asia/Pacific,  Director of Lockheed Martin Australia , Director of Electro-Optic Systems and Principal of GCB Stratos Consulting.

He lives in Canberra with his wife and his two sons.  His main sporting passion is Sailplane racing.

Air Chief Marshal Mark Binskin AC (Ret'd)
Deputy Chair

Air Chief Marshal Binskin (Ret’d) is a highly decorated and respected senior executive and leader in the national security, defence and aerospace sectors, most recently as Chief of the Defence Force of Australia from 2014-2018, and earlier as Vice Chief of the Defence Force (2011-2014) and Chief of Air Force (2008-2011). He is currently Deputy Chair of the Airservices Board, Deputy Chair of the Sir Richard Williams Foundation and on the Board of the Australian International Military Games (Invictus Games Sydney 2018).

As Chief of Defence, Air Chief Marshal Binskin (Ret’d) successfully led the Australian Defence Force, comprising 80,000 permanent and reserve personnel, to significantly improve capabilities and responses to major global events and championed organisational change across areas of national security, culture, diversity and leadership performance. He oversaw the First Principles Review of Defence and delivered the successful implementation of the One Defence approach.

Air Chief Marshal Binskin (Ret’d) has provided specialist advice to the highest levels of governments, industry leaders and international stakeholders and his aerospace knowledge and expertise is extensive. He has over 3,500 hours in single seat fighter aircraft including the A-4G Skyhawk, Mirage 111O, F-16C and F/A-18 Hornet, and continues to be active in general aviation as a commercial and RAAus pilot and warbird owner.

Air Chief Marshal Binskin (Ret’d) has completed the Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program, is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society. 

VADM Tim Barrett AO, CSC (Retd)

Vice Admiral Barrett joined the Royal Australian Navy in 1976 as a Seaman Officer and later specialised in aviation. He assumed command of the Royal Australian Navy on 1 July 2014 and remained in this position until 6 July 2018.

A dual-qualified officer, Vice Admiral Barrett served in Her Majesty's Australian (HMA) Ships Melbourne, Perth and Brisbane and HMS Orkney as a Seaman Officer and then as Flight Commander in HMA Ships Stalwart, Adelaide and Canberra. His staff appointments include Deputy Director Air Warfare Development, Director Naval Officer's Postings and Director General of Defence Force Recruiting.

Vice Admiral Barrett has served as Commanding Officer 817 Squadron, Commanding Officer HMAS Albatross, Commander Australian Navy Aviation Group, Commander Border Protection Command and as Commander Australian Fleet.

Vice Admiral Barrett was awarded a Conspicuous Service Cross in 2006 for outstanding performance as Commanding Officer HMAS Albatross and as Chief of Staff Navy Aviation Force Element Group Headquarters. Vice Admiral Barrett was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia in 2009 and subsequently promoted to Officer of the Order of Australia in 2014 for his leadership of Border Protection Command and the Australian Fleet.

Vice Admiral Barrett holds a Bachelor of Arts in Politics and History and a Masters of Defence Studies, both from the University of New South Wales, and has completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School. He recently published ‘The Navy and the Nation: Australia's Maritime Power in the 21st Century’ in which he outlines the extensive opportunities for Navy and Australia as steps are taken to implement the planned investment in naval capability outlined in the Defence White Paper 2016 and the National Shipbuilding Plan over the coming decades.

Vice Admiral Barrett and his wife, Jenny, have two daughters.

Mr John Conway

John is the Managing Partner of Felix, a Not-for-profit company providing specialist decision support services to the Australian Defence community. He is the Publisher of the Australian Defence Business Review (ADBR), an independent platform established to enable communication across Defence, industry, academia, and Government. He was previously a business development and strategy executive with Raytheon Australia specialising in air combat integration, electronic warfare, advanced weapons systems, test and training ranges, and integrated air and missile defence.

John retired from the Royal Air Force as a Group Captain in 2010 having served 24 years in a number flying, staff and senior command roles. His operational experience on F4 Phantom and Tornado F3 aircraft included Cold War Europe, the South Atlantic, the Balkans, and the Middle East. He commanded the United Kingdom’s largest Permanent Joint Operating Base at RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus between 2005 and 2008 enabling the airbridge into Iraq and Afghanistan, and supporting strategic ISR operations in the eastern Mediterranean. He attended the United States Marine Corps Weapons and Tactics Instructor Course and the Australian Advanced Command and Staff Course.

Ms Amanda Holt

 Amanda holds tertiary qualifications in Aerospace Engineering and Business,   complemented by post-graduate studies in Remote Sensing, Systems and   Software Engineering. Commencing her career in Military Systems Engineering   developing interoperable Combat, Communications and Simulation Systems for   the Royal Australian Navy, Amanda further developed her understanding of the   integration of military systems upon joining SYPAQ Systems in 2007, working   with capabilities as broad as Naval Aviation, Army Aviation, Aerospace Weapons Systems, Aerospace Training Systems, Land Surveillance Systems, Joint ISR Systems, UAV Capabilities, Simulation based tools and ICT intensive Joint Intelligence Capabilities. Ten years on, Amanda is now the CEO of SYPAQ Systems, employing almost 200 engineering and technical personnel across Australia, delivering specialist services in the fields of trusted autonomous systems, software intensive systems, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance and cyber capabilities.

Amanda is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers, a Board Member of the Centre for Defence Industry Capability, a member of Defence Council of Victoria, and for the past two years served as a Director of the Sir Richard Williams Foundation.

Air Marshal Errol J. McCormack AO (Retd)

Errol McCormack retired from the Royal Australian Air Force in June 2001 as Chief of Air Force. Since his retirement from the RAAF he has established a company providing consultancy services for companies working with the Australian Department of Defence.

He is the Non-executive Chairman of Chemring Australia Pty Ltd, a countermeasures and pyrotechnic manufacturing company based in Victoria. He consults for both Quickstep Holdings Limited, a manufacturer of carbon composite materials based in New South Wales and Victoria and General Electric Aviation of the USA. His pro-bono work includes Deputy Chair of the Board of the Sir Richard Williams Foundation, a think tank supporting development of Australian military aviation policy.

Major General Fergus "Gus" McLachlan AO (Retd)


Group Captain David Millar


David (Doc) Millar is a Reserve Officer employed in Information Warfare Division, and also employed at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI). He retired from the RAAF in 2017 as a Group Captain after 35 years’ service. Prior to his retirement, he held positions as Director of Military Strategic Futures in Strategic Policy Division, Director of Targeting, and Director of Operations AFHQ. He has also served on the Air Staff in the Australian Embassy in Washington. In 2008 he deployed to Headquarters Multi National Forces Iraq. His flying career included C-130E, Learjet, and all variants of the F-111.

He is originally from Melbourne and graduated from La Trobe University with a Bachelor of Science (Hons) in 1980 before joining the Air Force in 1982.

Doc’s interests include Scuba, photography, skiing, aviation and antiquarian literature. He is a member of the Old Melburnians, the United Service Club, and the Cave Diving Association of Australia.

Mr Ken Moore


 Ken retired from the Australian Public Service in 2005 after a 38-year   career in the Department of Defence. His last appointment was as the   Defence Chief Finance Officer. Prior to the CFO position, Ken held a   number of other senior management appointments in Defence including   Head of National Operations Division (HNOD) in Defence Corporate   Support and was responsible for the management and delivery of a range   of services to all Defence bases across Australia.

    In the period 2005 to 2012, Ken worked with the ACT Government as the Chief Executive Officer of Rhodium Asset Solutions (the Government’s vehicle leasing company) and Executive Director Shared Services ICT.
      • Independent Chair, Audit and Risk Committee, Department of Veterans Affairs.
      • Independent Chair, Audit Committee, Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions.
      • Independent Member, Audit Committee, Transport Canberra and City Services, ACT Government.
      • Independent Member, Chemring Australia Advisory Board,

      In addition to the Williams Foundation, Ken holds a number of other appointments:

      Ken has tertiary qualifications in economics and accounting. He is a Fellow of CPA Australia and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Ken is also a graduate of the Advanced Management Program at the INSEAD Business School in France and the Senior Defence Resource Management Program at the US Navy Postgraduate School in California.

      Ms Nicole Quinn


       Nicole Quinn is the Director of Government Relations at Parker &   Partners and heads up the Canberra operations of Ogilvy Public   Relations. Nicole has more than 20 years’ experience advising in   executive management, advocacy and stakeholder relations at the   Federal Government level.

       Immediately prior to joining Parker & Partners, Nicole was the   General Manager of the regional security think tank the Institute For Regioanl Security.  Nicole has also held a non-partisan Ministerial appointment working directly to senior Federal Ministers of the Defence personnel portfolio.

      Firstly in Sydney and then Canberra, Nicole has held senior roles in marketing, communication, sponsorship and stakeholder relations in the corporate sector, with peak industry bodies and with Federal Government Agencies.

      At Parker and Partners Nicole is working with clients including Australian Tax Office, Tresillian, Department of Industry (NSW), Mars Wrigley Australia, American Express, AbbVie, Roche and Sydney Invictus Games. Nicole offers her clients the insights and understanding of the political landscape, bureaucracy and key influencers at the most senior Federal level that ensures highly successful engagement and communication campaigns.

      Nicole is currently also a board member of the Institute For Regional Security.

      Air Vice-Marshal Brian Weston (Retd)


      Brian Weston underwent flying training in the UK on the Jet Provost and the Hawker Hunter. He flew with Nos 3, 76 and 77 Squadrons, is a graduate of the fighter combat instructor course, commanded No 75 Squadron, commanded Base Squadron RAAF Base Richmond and was Commander, Tactical Fighter Group, having flown tours on the Avon Sabre, Mirage 111O and F/A-18.

      A graduate of the USAF, Air Warfare College and the Royal College of Defence Studies, he conducted the Post Implementation Review of the Defence Regional Support arrangements of the Australian Defence Force in 1993. In July 1997, on completion of his appointment as Assistant Chief of Defence Force for Operations, he transferred to the RAAF Reserve.

      Following the Black Hawk mid-air collision, he and John Faulkner - Deputy Chair of Air Services Australia - conducted an Independent Review of ADF Airworthiness.

      Subsequently his appointments have included: Executive Director Defence Industries of Australian Business Limited; Executive Director of the Association of Australian Aerospace Industries; inaugural ‘Industry Chair’ of the Defence Capability Advisory Forum; and a member of the Defence and Industry Advisory Council.

      He has worked with Northrop Grumman, Lockheed Martin, P&O Services and with Allied Technology Group; and was a non-executive director of National Air Support, operating the Coastwatch fleet of aircraft. He chaired the SAI Global Certification Board from 2002 to 2014.

      He has published a range of commentaries including for the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, the RAAF Aerospace Centre, the Sir Richard Williams Foundation and the RAAF Air Power Development Centre. He was a visiting fellow at the Aerospace, Mechanical and Civil Engineering School at UNSW@ADFA from 2005 to 2012. His interests include racing historic sports cars.

      Ms Katherine Ziesing

       Managing Editor, Australian Defence Magazine

       Katherine Ziesing joined the ADM team in 2006 as a staff writer and was   appointed editor in Canberra at the beginning of 2008. While she has a   background in business journalism and economics, she has completed a Masters   of Strategy and Policy at the University of New South Wales at the Australian   Defence Force Academy. She was a member of the Defence Industry Study   Course (DISC) in 2017.

      Katherine became Managing Editor of Yaffa Media’s ADM Group on January 1, 2018.

      Katherine is also a committee member of the Submarine Institute of Australia (SIA), Australia’s leading body on submarine matters. She also acts as the Treasurer and web master for the Defence and Security Media Association, a group of Australia’s leading Defence and Security journalists. She is a regular contributor to The Australian newspaper’s Defence Supplements, and the Australian Strategic Policy Institute’s (ASPI) The Strategist blog.

      The Williams Foundation, PO Box 5214, KINGSTON ACT 2604

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