Leading Aircraftman Trung Phan’s commitment to give back to Australia is motived by the welcome he and his family received when they migrated to the country after the Vietnam War.

He was aged 12 at the time.

Joining Air Force as an aircraft structural technician for the F-A18/A/B Hornet and No.36 Squadron’s C-17A Globemaster provided Leading Aircraftman Phan with the opportunity he was seeking to show his gratitude to Australia.

“I am still thankful every day for this opportunity, and I bring this energy to work daily,” he said. 

“The work we do may be small, but together, we help protect our country, our freedom and most of all, our beloved family.

“We are lucky to have peace in our country, and people often forgot their work is helping to maintain it that way.

“We live on the same soil, and that soil offers us all the same freedom, opportunity and equality - Australia gives us a sense of belonging by giving us a place to live and prosper.”

The Air Force workforce must reflect the diverse community it serves. By fostering workforce inclusiveness, Air Force attracts the best and brightest personnel critical for success.

Leading Aircraftman Phan said a diverse workforce brought new ideas and solutions, and that was important as Air Force evolved.

“We often value a fresh set of eyes because they can see things that others have become used to,” Leading Aircraftman Phan said.

“We upgrade our equipment because of evolving threats, so we should consider that we should also upgrade our workforce by diversifying to reflect the general Australian population.

“This diversified workforce will become the norm, and one day, it will no longer be a ‘diverse’ workforce but the Australian workforce.”

Air Force is proud to be part of this week's Harmony Week.