Principal Air Chaplain James Cox
Principal Air Chaplain James Cox was born in Melbourne in 1964. He joined the Air Force as a Specialist Reserve Chaplain in 2003 and, in 2014, transferred to the permanent Air Force as a full-time Chaplain.
Prior to joining Air Force, Principal Air Chaplain Cox spent six years in Darwin developing an alternative community expression of faith under the auspices of the Baptist Union of the Northern Territory. Key themes of this ministry included: justice; human dignity; poverty awareness; advocacy; Indigenous welfare; and providing pastoral care to a diverse volunteer base.
Additionally, Principal Air Chaplain Cox enhanced his skills leading an Australian Quarantine and Inspection Service team at an Australian capital city airport. His early career also included service as a Team Leader and Research Data Analyst with the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
Principal Air Chaplain Cox’s early Air Force career was spent primarily supporting aviators and their families in and around the RAAF Williamtown area. He has operational experience in the Middle East; Hawaii and Timor-Leste (the latter with AQIS). He was advanced to Division 3 Chaplain (Senior Coordinating Chaplain) in December 2018. Since that time he has been an active member of the Air Force Chaplaincy Leadership Team.
Principal Air Chaplain Cox has earned six tertiary qualifications relating variously to: Theology, Economics; Pastoral Counselling; Ministry; and Community Development. He has served for five years as a Board Member with Spiritual Care Australia, and this has facilitated a deep understanding of contemporary Chaplaincy practice and the skills that are essential to the profession.
Following his advancement to Division 5 Chaplain on 17 December 2021, Principal Air Chaplain Cox was appointed as Director General Chaplaincy – Air Force on 13 January 2022. He welcomes his new challenge of aligning a vibrant and Air Force Chaplaincy capability to the Air Force Strategy and to the broad cultural reforms that are outlined in Our Air Force Our Culture.
Principal Air Chaplain Cox is married to Mandy, and his interests include reading theology / philosophy, Church and Society dialogue and research, walking, mountain and road bike riding, art, bonsai, reading novels, writing poetry and trying to keep fit.