Boeing Defence Australia has recruited an Australian Army veteran and Victoria Cross recipient to take on the role of strategic defence adviser.
After nearly 15 years in the military, Mark Donaldson will use his knowledge and experience to support aerospace specialist Boeing's growth in the joint and land domain.
Boeing Defence Australia currently provides solutions for the Australian Army including LAND 2072 Phase 2B Project Currawong, CH-47 delivery and operational maintenance support, army aviation training and training support, and the helicopter aircrew training system.
Vice president and managing director of Boeing Defence Australia Darren Edwards said Donaldson was a strong addition to the company’s growing veteran workforce.
"Donaldson’s strategic counsel will be invaluable as we continue to find solutions that meet the current and future needs of the Australian Army and its role in an integrated fifth generation defence force," Edwards said.
Donaldson said he was excited to take up a new challenge in an industry close to his heart.
"Boeing Defence Australia has given me the opportunity to continue to serve my country, ensuring the men and women that defend our nation have the best platforms, tools and services they need to get the job done," said Donaldson.
After initial training with the Australian Army in 2002, Donaldson was allocated to the Royal Australian Infantry Corps and posted to the 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, before successfully completing the Special Air Service selection course in February 2004.
On 2 September 2008, during the conduct of a fighting patrol, (then) Trooper Donaldson was travelling in a combined Afghan, US and Australian vehicle convoy engaged by a numerically superior, entrenched and co-ordinated enemy ambush. For his actions on this day, Trooper Donaldson was subsequently awarded the Victoria Cross for Australia. Trooper Donaldson’s citation reads:
"For most conspicuous acts of gallantry in action in a circumstance of great peril in Afghanistan as part of the Special Operations Task Group during Operation SLIPPER, Uruzgan province, Afghanistan."
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On 16 January 2009, Donaldson, who was a Trooper at the time, was invested with the Victoria Cross for Australia by the Governor-General, becoming the first Australian to receive the award since the Vietnam War.
On 25 January 2010, Corporal Donaldson was recognised for his outstanding example to Australia’s youth and announced as the Young Australian of the Year by the Prime Minister in a public ceremony on the lawns of Parliament House in Canberra.