The Edinburgh Defence Precinct has a new Senior Leader with Air Commodore Philip Gordon handing over command of the Air Warfare Centre (AWC) and Senior Australian Defence Force Officer to Air Commodore Brendan Rogers.

The February 21 ceremony was held in the historic Hangar 592 at RAAF Base Edinburgh, home for the new Aircraft Research and Development Unit’s Pilatus PC-21s.

Defence Force personnel and close family were there to mark the change in command and welcome their new leader.

Air Commodore Brendan ‘Buck’ Rogers has had extensive involvement in RAAF airborne surveillance capabilities, performing acceptance tests and evaluation activities in the United States before leading deployment of successive new capabilities on joint operations.
"I want to congratulate Air Commodore Gordon on his vision and leadership directing the AWC through to a declaration of full operating capability," Air Commodore Rogers said.

"You should all take pride in your incredible achievements and you have built an expectation of continued excellence.

"My commitment is to provide you with the leadership, support and advocacy that will enable you to deliver on our mission to ready the warfighter.

"We don’t get to do what we do on our own and I deeply appreciate the support of my wife and family during my Service career and that they were able to witness this occasion.

"Maximum sustained effort is inclusive of the investment you need to make in your current and future wellbeing and your support networks underpin this. Look after those around you and the rest will follow."

Air Commodore Gordon has taken up the new position of Director General Air Defence and Space in Air Force Headquarters, Canberra.

"Over the past 14 months in command of the Air Warfare Centre we have achieved a lot," Air Commodore Gordon said.

"As well as maturing the delivery of capability across the group and achieving full operating capability on January 31 this year, a particular highlight was the development and implementation of the Advanced Test and Training Environment, enhancing the conduct of high-end testing and training.

"I have thoroughly enjoyed my time as SADFO of a high-performing super base during which time we delivered a very successful airshow and worked with community stakeholders to celebrate 100 years since the epic flight by brothers Sir Ross and Sir Keith Smith from England to Australia in 1919.

"I leave the AWC in very capable hands."

Air Commodore Rogers is from Wandong, about 50km north of Melbourne.

He joined Air Force in 1987 via the Australian Defence Force Academy in Canberra.

He undertook pilot training in Pilatus PC-9A and MB326H Macchi trainers before completing P-3C Orion operational conversion at RAAF Base Edinburgh. He has accrued more than 4800 flying hours across five Orion variants.

He was awarded the Conspicuous Service Cross in 2014 for outstanding achievement in the delivery of airborne Electronic Warfare Capability for Air Force.

His achievements in command during Operation Okra were recognised through the award of a Conspicuous Service Medal in 2018.