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April 12, 2012
AFTER more than 30 years in blue
and brass, former Air Commander
Australia (ACAUST) AVM Mark
Skidmore has said goodbye to Air
Well, the permanent Air Force at
AVM Skidmore was sent off with
a dining-out night at RAAF Base
Glenbrook on March 22, attended by
CAF AIRMSHL Geoff Brown.
He has now transferred to the Air
AVM Skidmore joined the RAAF
in 1977 and was appointed ACAUST
in June 2008.
In the intervening years, he flew
F-111s in Australia with 1SQN and in
He was then posted to the Aircraft
Research and Development Unit
(ARDU), RAAF Base Edinburgh,
where he flew F-111, Mirage,
MB-326H, CT-4A and Dakota aircraft.
Other postings included back to
1SQN and 82WG and Headquarters
Air Command before he resigned in
He re-enlisted in 2000.
From 2003 he was Director of
Operational Requirements for the New
Air Combat Capability project.
In 2005, he was appointed Joint
Force Air Component Commander,
and deployed to the MEAO as the
Director Combined Air Operations
AIRMSHL Geoff Brown thanked
AVM Skidmore for his contribution.
"During his time as ACAUST,
AVM Skidmore oversaw planning and
implementation for the withdrawal
of the F-111 and introduction of the
Super Hornet, Wedgetail, Vigilare and
Heron Remotely Piloted Aircraft,"
AIRMSHL Brown said.
"During his tenure as ACAUST,
our Force Element Groups (FEGs)
have been very busy contributing to
operations, disaster relief, and a num-
ber of VIP visits. I thank him for
his leadership of Headquarters Air
Command and our FEGs, and also
acknowledge his 30-year contribution
to Air Force."
AVM Skidmore said that Air
Command had undergone significant
development but that every single
member of the 14,000-strong organisa-
tion had played a central role in ensur-
ing Air Force had the capability for air
operations. "We have certainly learned
a lot," he said.
He includes himself in that.
"When I first started as ACAUST
I felt I was 'flying on the buffet and
about to stall'.
"However, I can now say that the
3½ years has flown by at the speed of
One of his primary duties had been
to ensure Air Force had a trained force
ready to deliver on operational com-
"Such diversity of operations has
demanded a strong cross-section of
skills and experience, and at any one
time, there are about 1000 personnel
deployed around the world," he said.
"If I could have a 'buzzword' term
relevant to my tour I would like it to
be, 'look after your mates -- in the
office, on the flightline and socially'."
Skidmore PARTING GESTURE:
AVM Mark Skidmore
with a farewell gift
at his dining-out
night at RAAF Base
Photo: LAC Chris Hall
AVM Skimore in a
Super Hornet cockpit
in the US in 2009.
Photo: LACW Casey Gaul
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