Chief of Air Force

Air Marshal Robert Chipman, AO, CSC

The Chief of Air Force oversees Air Force activities that raise, train and sustain assigned Air Force capabilities.

Air Marshal Robert Chipman joined the Royal Australian Air Force in 1989 as an Officer Cadet at the Australian Defence Force Academy, graduating from Sydney University with an Honours degree in Aeronautical Engineering in 1992.

He completed the Pilots Course in 1994, F/A-18 Operational Conversion in 1995 and Fighter Combat Instructor Course in 1999. Following various operational and instructor assignments, he commanded No 75 Squadron from 2006-2009 and No 81 Wing from 2013-2014. In 2008, No 75 Squadron was awarded the Duke of Gloucester Cup for the most proficient flying squadron and the Kittyhawk Trophy in 2009 for the most proficient fighter squadron.

Air Marshal Chipman has staff experience in capability development roles within Capability Development Group and Air Force Headquarters. He has completed a tour as Director of the Australian Air and Space Operations Centre within Headquarters Joint Operations Command. In 2015, he was an inaugural Director of Plan Jericho, an Air Force transformation program intended to deliver joint, integrated air and space capability for the Australian Defence Force.

On promotion to Air Vice-Marshal in 2019 Air Marshal Chipman served as Australia’s Military Representative to NATO and the European Union. He was the Head of Military Strategic Commitments, responsible for the strategic level management and situational awareness of current and potential Australian Defence Force commitments from January 2021, until his selection as Chief of Air Force and promotion to Air Marshal in July 2022.

Air Marshal Chipman deployed on Operation SLIPPER in 2012 as a Battlecab Director in the United States Air Force 609th Air and Space Operations Centre. He deployed on Operation OKRA in 2014 as inaugural Commander Air Task Unit 630.1, for which he was awarded a Conspicuous Service Cross in 2015. He was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in 2019 for his exceptional service to the Australian Defence Force in coalition air operations, air combat capability preparedness, and strategic capability development and sustainment.

Air Marshal Chipman has completed a Masters in Business Administration and graduated as a fellow of the Defence and Strategic Studies Course in 2016. He is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and Oxford Advanced Management and Leadership Programme. He is also an alumni of the Cranlana Institute and has completed the United Nations Senior Mission Leaders Course.

Air Marshal Chipman is married to Alyce and has four sons, Thomas, Oliver, Darcy and Charlie. He enjoys keeping fit and reading.