Hon Ron Mark
Minister of Defence
21 August 2018 Media Statement
New Chiefs of Navy, Army and Air Force
Defence Minister Ron Mark has today announced the appointment of new Service Chiefs for the Navy, Army and Air Force
after the completion of a recruitment process led by the State Services Commission.
“I’m delighted to announce that following approval by Cabinet, Commodore David Proctor, Brigadier John Boswell and Air
Commodore Andrew Clark have been appointed by the Governor-General to lead their respective Services,” says Ron Mark.
Commodore David Proctor has been appointed to the position of Chief of Navy, for a term of three years from 1 December
2018 to 30 November 2021, and will be promoted to the rank of Rear Admiral.
Brigadier John Boswell DSD has been appointed to the position of Chief of Army, for a term of three years from 10
September 2018 to 9 September 2021, and will be promoted to the rank of Major General.
Air Commodore Andrew Clark has been appointed to the position of Chief of Air Force, for a term of three years from 10
September 2018 to 9 September 2021, and will be promoted to the rank of Air Vice-Marshal.
“It takes decades of hard work to become a Service Chief. All three are excellent officers and I’m certain they will do
an outstanding job.
“In particular this is a watershed day for the Navy, with Commodore Proctor becoming the first logistics officer to be
appointed as the Chief of Navy.
“I’d like to thank the outgoing Chiefs of Navy and Army; Rear Admiral John Martin and Major General Peter Kelly, for
their outstanding service to New Zealand. You’ve been a credit to our Defence Force and I wish you well in the next step
in your careers.
“I’d also like to congratulate the outgoing Chief of Air Force, Air Vice-Marshal Tony Davies, whose appointment to the
role of Vice Chief of Defence Force was announced earlier in the year.
“In a wider sense, the appointment of three new Service Chiefs at the same time will lead to a refresh of Defence Force
leadership at all levels. This is an exciting prospect, with a lot of impressive leaders coming up through the ranks.
“In particular, I will be watching for a lift in leadership opportunities for women throughout the organisation,
increasing the chance that in the not too distant future the Government has the opportunity to appoint the first ever
female Service Chief,” says Ron Mark.
The State Services Commission will be proactively releasing the Cabinet paper relating to the appointment here:
Commodore David Proctor
Commodore Proctor has 32 years of service in the Navy. During this time he has held a variety of roles, particularly in
the areas of logistics and supply, earlier in his career as Supply Officer of HMNZS TUI, HMNZS ENDEAVOUR and HMNZS TE
MANA, and moving through roles such as Supply Chain Commander and Captain Fleet Support.
Commodore Proctor was also the Senior National Officer/United Nations Chief of Logistics – United Nations Mission in
Support of East Timor. More recently he was the Deputy Assistant Chief Capability/Director Capability Portfolio
Planning, Commander Logistics (2015 to 2017) and Chief of Defence Strategy and Governance (2017 to February 2018). He
was posted to the Deputy Commander Joint Forces New Zealand role in March 2018, and is currently the acting Vice Chief
of Defence Force.
Brigadier John Boswell
Brigadier Boswell enlisted into the Army in 1984 and has extensive international service. He has deployed on operations
with the United Nations in Angola, East Timor and the Middle East and, in April 2010, he deployed to Afghanistan, as the
Senior National Officer and Commanding Officer of the New Zealand Provincial Reconstruction Team, Bamyan. Brigadier
Boswell was awarded the Distinguished Service Decoration in recognition of his service there.
More recently, Brigadier Boswell was the Head of Strategy Management (Army, from 2010 to 2012), Acting Deputy Chief of
Army (March to June 2012), Chief Plans Officer Joint Force Headquarters (2012 to 2014), and Assistant Chief Strategic
Commitments and Engagement (2016 to February 2018, following attendance at the National Defence College of India). He is
currently the Land Component Commander, a role he was appointed to in March 2018.
Air Commodore Andrew Clark
Air Commodore Clark joined the RNZAF in 1986 as a navigator and, through his early career, served operationally on Orion
aircraft, instructed aircrew in Australia and New Zealand, provided support to the Chief of Air Staff, and had the role
of Operations Flight Commander, No 5 Squadron. He was later a Staff Officer, HQJFNZ at Trentham, Project Manager (P-3K2
Orion Introduction Into Service), and Commanding Officer, No 5 Squadron. He served operationally in the Middle East.
In his more recent career, Air Commodore Clark has held a variety of operational and strategic positions, including as
Assistant Chief of Air Force – Strategy from 2009 to 2011, Director of Strategic Commitments from 2012 to 2013, Director
of Defence Intelligence from 2014 to 2015 and, prior to his current role, as Assistant Chief – Capability from 2016 to
2018. He is currently the Air Component Commander, a role he was appointed to in March 2018.