Royal Australian Air Force welcomes new Chief

The Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) welcomed its new Chief, Air Marshal Mel Hupfeld, AO, DSC during a ceremonial parade and flypast in Canberra today.

Outgoing Chief of Air Force, Air Marshal Leo Davies, AO, CSC said it has been a privilege to lead the RAAF for the last four years.

“I have been fortunate to have spent most of my life in this wonderful institution with its long record of service to our nation,” Air Marshal Davies said. 

“I am grateful for the tireless support of my family throughout my career, and for the dedication and commitment of all the men and women of the RAAF during my time as Chief.”

Air Marshal Hupfeld said it was both an incredible honour and a substantial responsibility to be taking over command of Air Force.

“Our people are the key to our capability, and it is humbling to have been chosen to lead them,” Air Marshal Hupfeld said.

“I am grateful for the enduring legacy of Air Marshal Davies’ leadership, with today’s RAAF on a strong and solid vector for the future.”

Air Marshal Hupfeld has served in the RAAF for almost 40 years. He was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross (DSC) in recognition of his performance as Commanding Officer of Number 75 Squadron on Operation FALCONER, and his Squadron was awarded a Meritorious Unit Citation. 

Air Marshal Hupfeld has commanded Air Combat Group, posted as Air Commander Australia and Head Force Design. He received an appointment as Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) for distinguished service to the Australian Defence Force in senior command and staff appointments. 

Prior to being appointed Chief of Air Force, Air Marshal Hupfeld served as Chief Joint Operations.

More information:

Air Marshal Hupfeld's full biography

Imagery of the parade 

Video: Chief of Air Force Change of Command