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The Hon Scott Morrison MP
Prime Minister

The Hon Darren Chester MP
Minister for Veterans' Affairs
Minister for Defence Personnel

MEDIA RELEASE

Friday, 15 May 2020

Joint media release — Veterans’ contribution to Australia’s workforce recognised

Nine organisations and individuals who have made exceptional efforts in promoting the unique skills and experience of military veterans have been recognised in the third annual Prime Minister’s Veterans’ Employment Awards.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said the personnel of the Australian Defence Force (ADF) embody the best of the nation.

“The skills our ADF personnel hone during their service are ones that are also needed in every single workplace which is what the Veterans’ Employment Program recognises,” the Prime Minister said.

“We celebrate those businesses who are supporting veterans and their families to fulfil their potential as employees and entrepreneurs.

“While I am disappointed the Awards ceremony could not go ahead this year, I want to recognise the amazing efforts of our veterans, and the employers and individuals around the country who are supporting employment for them and their families.

“Congratulations to all the winners of the 2020 Veterans’ Employment Awards for their exceptional leadership in demonstrating the value and ongoing contribution that our military veterans provide to our country’s workforce.

“I would like to particularly acknowledge the winner of the Outstanding Contribution by an Individual to Veterans’ Employment Award, posthumously awarded to Darren Edwards, the former Managing Director of Boeing Defence Australia.

“Darren set an example as a husband, a father, a former Army officer. Through his leadership he put the company at the forefront of recognising and promoting veterans’ unique skills and experience, offering work placements and mentoring, and partnering with a range of veteran support organisations.”

Minister for Veterans’ Affairs and Minister for Defence Personnel Darren Chester said the Government is committed to putting veterans and their families first, which includes helping former service men and women successfully transitioning into civilian life and to find meaningful employment.

“Each year, around 5,500 military personnel transition from service in the ADF — service that is overwhelmingly positive and good for the individual, good for the community and in the national interest,” Mr Chester said.

“The Award for Outstanding Employer of the Year went to professional consulting services company AeroPM for its commitment to transitioning veterans into civilian employment.

“AeroPM has recognised the incredible value of employing veterans and boasts a workforce comprising more than 90 per cent Australian veterans — congratulations and I look forward to reading about your future achievements.”

The Prime Minister’s Veterans’ Employment Awards celebrate veterans’ world-class training, leadership and entrepreneurial skills, and recognise organisations and individuals across Australia who promote and prioritise the employment of military veterans.

There were a record 129 nominations for the 2020 Awards, the highest in the Awards’ three-year history.  The high standard of nominations demonstrates organisations are recognising the value of hiring veterans.

The Awards are part of the Prime Minister’s Veterans’ Employment Program, which brings together a range of resources for veteran job-seekers and employers. The program includes the Government’s Veterans Employment Commitment, a public declaration that each signatory supports greater employment opportunities for veterans. To date, more than 250 organisations have signed up to the Commitment.

Further information about the Awards and the 2020 winners can be found on the Prime Minister’s Veterans’ Employment Program website (www.veteransemployment.gov.au).

2020 Prime Minister’s Veterans’ Employment Awards winners
CATEGORY WINNER
Outstanding contribution by an individual to Veterans’ Employment Mr Darren Edwards (posthumously awarded)
Outstanding Veterans’ Employer of the Year AeroPM
Veterans Employer of the Year – Large Rheinmetall Defence Australia Pty Ltd
Veterans Employer of the Year – Medium AeroPM
Veterans Employer of the Year – Small Emergency Australia
Veteran Employee of the Year Mr Davor Strbac – Suncorp Group
Veteran Entrepreneur of the Year Mr Jeremy Holder – TacMed Australia
Excellence in Supporting Spouse Employment RSL Queensland
Public Sector Excellence in Supporting Veteran Employment The ACT Public Service
Excellence in Supporting Veterans’ Employment East Coast Apprenticeships

ENDS

Media Contacts

Prime Minister’s Press Office: (02) 6277 7744
Minister Chester’s Office: Cedric Szigeti, 0419 034 302
Department of Veterans’ Affairs media: 02 6289 6466

Open Arms — Veterans and Families Counselling provides support for current and ex-serving ADF personnel and their families. Free and confidential help is available 24/7. Phone 1800 011 046 (international: +61 1800 011 046 or +61 8 8241 4546) or visit www.OpenArms.gov.au