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Peter Cosgrove

Peter Cosgrove was in the Australian Army for forty years, a career that culminated in the top job, Chief of the Defence Force. After retiring from the Defence Force, and before his appointment as Governor-General, Cosgrove developed a portfolio of directorships, which included a previously unrevealed appointment, six years on the Australian board of Leonardo, an Italian multinational and world top 10 arms manufacturer. Leonardo was part of the consortium supplying the ADF with 47 new multi-role helicopters, a project that commenced while Cosgrove was CDF.

Peter Leahy

Lieutenant-General Peter Leahy retired from the Australian army in July 2008 having concluded his 37 year military career with six years as Chief of Army. Within a year he was on the boards of Codan and Electro Optic Systems (EOS). More recently, EOS has been exporting its weapon systems to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates while the Yemen war has raged despite multiple reports of war crimes by these countries and a situation in Yemen which the UN has called the world’s worst humanitarian catastrophe.

Tony Fraser

Tony Fraser was in the Australian Army for 34 years, including a final stint in Defence’s weapons buying arm as Head of Helicopter Systems. From there he exited to industry, leading Finmeccanica’s Australian operation (now Leonardo) then moving to Airbus Australia. Both corporations were in the consortium supplying Defence with $3.5 billion of new helicopters. In November 2018, Fraser moved back into government as the Head of Defence’s weapons buying group.

Jim McDowell

After 37 years in military industry, Jim McDowell moved from BAE Systems Saudi Arabia onto the board of the Australian Nuclear Science Technology Organisation. He was also given $1.5 million in Defence contracts, joined the boards of various military industry companies, and was made Chancellor of UniSA, which has extensive research links with military industry. He is now Chief Executive, Department of the Premier and Cabinet, SA, “The Defence State”.

Mike Kelly

Less than two weeks after quitting parliament for health reasons, Mike Kelly, member of the powerful Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security, accepted a job leading Palantir Technologies Australia. Palantir is a US datamining corporation that has worked for the Pentagon and the CIA.

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Andy Keough

Andy Keough

A former commander of two Collins Class submarines, Andy Keough, has made an influential transition from uniform into corporate life. After 22 years in the Royal Australian Navy, Keough took up a business development role in submarines for global arms giant Thales, next moving on to Australian Submarine Corporation (ASC). In 2015 Keough joined the SA Government’s powerful DefenceSA as Chief Executive before being headhunted in 2017 as MD for Saab Technologies. Internationally, Saab ranks 30th in SIPRI’s Top 100 Arms-Producing and Military Services Companies. Keough’s influence extends onto important boards, including the South Australian education board, the SA Training and Skills Commission, and a defence-related board with Adelaide University, among others.

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