Coming from the North Queensland town of Ingham, surrounded by agriculture, aquaculture and, of course sugar cane, it is not surprising Warrant Officer Scott Atkinson had a passion for cooking at school, given his access to some of the nation's best raw produce, a passion he has developed into his career.
Warrant Officer Atkinson's father served in the Citizen’s Military Forces (CMF), his grandfather as a sapper in the Army in World War II, so an interest in an ADF career was a natural progression and sparked his desire to join Air Force.
"I had been in the Air Training Corps and my passion for cooking had me decide to combine both into one career in the Air Force," Warrant Officer Atkinson said.
"I trained at RAAF Base Wagga and since then have served across Australia and overseas on domestic and international operations.
"Wherever our people are, the catering team is there to ensure they are fed and that the food they eat is healthy and nutritious.
"I was fortunate to support the recovery team who extracted a RAAF Caribou in New Guinea, was there to feed the recovery team when we lost the Navy helicopter at Nias after an Indonesian tsunami.
"These are particularly draining activities for our troops and keeping them well-nourished is critical to their ability to continue performing at the highest level under difficult circumstances."
Today, Warrant Officer Atkinson is the Warrant Officer, Catering, at No. 13 Squadron at RAAF Base Darwin.
"Catering has changed significantly since I commenced my career, with real innovation, particularly in the Deployed Catering Capability space," Warrant Officer Atkinson said.
"Every day we look to consistently improve systems, get better integration and improve the design of the capability for every exercise or deployment.
"Catering to deployed troops is critical to the performance of our future force.
"As we commemorate the formation of the Royal Australian Air Force 100 years ago, I am excited to be a part of the Centenary with the introduction of new aircraft platforms, new technology and the direction of the Air Force."
With people a strong focus of the Air Force Centenary, throughout 2020 and 2021 exceptional members who have contributed to the Air Force will be featured on www.airforce.gov.au/100 and Warrant Officer Atkinson is a fine example of the thousands of people who make up our Air Force.
Planning is underway for the commemoration of the Royal Australian Air Force’s formation in March 1921 and further information may be obtained at www.airforce.gov.au/100
You can watch Warrant Officer Atkinson's story here.