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First female Admiral for the Royal Australian Navy
16 December 2011

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Ray Griggs with Rear Admiral Robyn Walker.
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Media release

The Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Ray Griggs, has promoted Commodore Robyn Walker to the rank of Rear Admiral in the Royal Australian Navy.

Admiral Walker is the first female in the Navy to attain the rank of Rear Admiral and to take on the job of Surgeon‑General for the Australian Defence Force. 

“This is an outstanding achievement personally for Admiral Walker,” Vice Admiral Griggs said.

“Her promotion reflects her outstanding service and dedication to Defence health services, the Royal Australian Navy and the Australian Defence Force.”

Admiral Walker’s promotion follows her achievements as Director-General of Health for the Navy with broader responsibilities to the ADF in leading a $270 million revamp of the ADF’s health capability, and her previous roles in supporting the health of operational Defence personnel in Iraq and East Timor.

Admiral Walker said she was honoured and humbled by her promotion.

“Navy and Defence have provided me with every opportunity to learn and develop as an individual; and if you take the opportunities that are provided and work hard, your efforts will be noticed and rewarded,” Admiral Walker said.

“I am looking forward to the challenges that I will face and continuing to make a positive difference in my new role.”

Admiral Walker joined the Royal Australian Navy from Brisbane as a Direct Entry Lieutenant in 1991, and has continued to work in the field of medicine ever since.

She served in HMA Ship Westralia and with the Sea Training Group, and has been involved in the planning of health support for several military operations.

Admiral Walker led the health planning and assembly for Australia’s military medical response to the 2004 Boxing Day Tsunami, and led further developments to the Australian Defence Force’s Mental Health Strategy between 2005 and 2008. In September this year, she was named Telstra ACT Business Woman of the Year for 2011.