The Chief of the Defence Force, General David Hurley, has announced Rear Admiral David Johnston, will succeed Lieutenant General Ash Power as the Chief of Joint Operations Command.
Rear Admiral Johnston will be promoted to Vice Admiral on 4 April and will commence his appointment on 20 May 2014.
"I am very pleased to appoint Rear Admiral Johnston as the Chief of Joint Operations. He has extensive operational and command experience across the tri-service, coalition and whole-of-government environment which makes him the standout choice for this role," General Hurley said.
Currently posted to Navy Headquarters, Rear Admiral Johnston deployed to Operation Slipper in 2010 as the Deputy Commander Joint Task Force 633. On his return to Australia, Rear Admiral Johnston was appointed Deputy Commander Exercise Talisman Sabre 2011 followed by postings as Deputy Commander Joint Operations and Commander Border Protection Command.
"Rear Admiral Johnston is a highly capable commander who is widely respected across the organisation. I am confident the Australian Defence Force will benefit from the strong practical understanding he will bring to his new role."
General Hurley congratulated Rear Admiral Johnston on his appointment and thanked outgoing Chief of Joint Operations, Lieutenant General Ash Power.
"Lieutenant General Power has done an outstanding job commanding all ADF operations over the past three years. He has overseen the end of Australian operations in Timor-Leste and the Solomon Islands, and most notably, the transition to Afghan National Security Forces in Uruzgan followed by the withdrawal of ADF personnel and equipment from the province,” he said.
During Lieutenant General Power's tenure the ADF also deployed humanitarian and disaster relief on Operation Yasi Assist, Queensland Flood Assist I and II, Christchurch Assist and Philippines Assist. Most recently, Lieutenant General Power has overseen Operation Southern Indian Ocean, the ADF's contribution to the search for the missing Malaysian Airlines aircraft.
"After almost 40 years service in the Australian Army, Lieutenant General Power has served this country with distinction and I wish him well for the future," General Hurley said.