Commando News Spring17


Major General Michael Clifford, AM, CSC

previous Head of Corps 2004 - 2005

Major General Clifford was born in

Sydney and educated at St Peters

College, Adelaide. He graduated

from the Officer Cadet School, Port -

sea in 1976 and was com missioned

into the Royal Australian Corps of


As a junior officer he served in a

range of regimental, staff and in -

structional appointments including

139 Signal Squadron (6 Brigade), and

the Commando Regiment Signal

Squadron. In 1984-85 he served in

Operations Branch of Headquarters

1st Division as the intelligence and

electronic warfare staff officer.

In 1987 Major General Clifford

was seconded to the United Nations as a Military

Observer with the Truce Supervision Organisation

(UNTSO) in the Middle East. During his time with

UNTSO he served on the Golan Heights and in

Southern Lebanon. On return to Australia he was

posted to 3 Brigade in Townsville, as Officer

Commanding 103 Signal Squadron.

In 1993, while a tactics instructor at the Land War -

fare Centre, Major General Clifford deployed to

Somalia during OPERATION SOLACE as a member of

the team that undertook the operational analysis of

Australia's contribution to the US led OPERATION


He was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel in 1993

and was appointed Director Electronic Warfare and

Special Intelligence in Army Office. In 1996 he was

posted as Commanding Officer of the School of

Signals and in 1998 was appointed as Staff Officer

Operations to the Chief of the Defence Force.

Major General Clifford was promoted to Colonel in

1999 when he was appointed as the Chief of Staff to

the Chief of the Defence Force. He was promoted to

Brigadier in 2002 when appointed

Director General Defence Informa -

tion Environment in the Office of the

Chief Information Officer. In early

2003 he was appointed Director

General Future Land Warfare in Army

Headquarters before taking over as

Director General Preparedness and

Plans - Army, in March 2003. He was

appointed as the Commandant

Australian Command Staff College,

in January 2005 and was promoted

Major General and assumed the

appointment as Head Information

Capability Management Division, in

the Chief Information Officer Group,

in June 2005.

Major General Clifford is a graduate of the

Command and Staff College, Queenscliff (1991), the

Joint Services Staff College (1998) and the Centre for

Defence and Strategic Studies (2001). His tertiary

qualifications include a Bachelor of Arts from

Queensland University, a Graduate Diploma in

Business Administration from Monash University and a

Master of Defence Studies from the University of New

South Wales. He has also undertaken post-graduate

studies in business at Mt Eliza and Harvard Business

Schools. He is currently a Doctoral Candidate in Public

Policy at the Australian National University. Major

General Clifford is also a graduate member of the

Australian Institute of Company Directors.

Major General Clifford was awarded a Conspicuous

Service Cross in the 1998 Australia Day Honours list for

his service as Commanding Officer of the School of

Signals and was appointed as a Member of the Order

of Australia in the 2002 Australia Day Honours list for

his service as Chief of Staff to the Chief of the Defence



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COMMANDO NEWS ~ Edition 11 I September 2017 33

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