The Victorian Government has appointed renowned industry and government defence expert John O’Callaghan as a new Defence Industry Advocate to showcase Victoria’s defence capabilities in Australia and across the globe.

John O’Callaghan will be a strong champion for the defence sector and help showcase Victoria's best defence talent to the world.

Minister for Jobs, Innovation and Trade Martin Pakula welcomed the appointment of Mr O’Callaghan who is taking the reins from Victoria’s first ever Defence Industry Advocate, Greg Combet AM.

Mr O’Callaghan has been a member of the Defence Council Victoria since 2017 and has worked as a senior executive in both government and industry roles in the defence sector.

He has supported Australia’s leading defence companies as the Executive Director of the Australian Industry Group Defence Council, in the Commonwealth Government’s Department of Defence and as a senior adviser to former federal Minister for Defence, Kim Beazley.

“I am delighted to have this opportunity to work with Victoria’s defence industry to promote the state’s leading capabilities here in Australia and internationally to attract investment and projects.” John O'Callaghan

In his role as advocate Mr O’Callaghan will play a leading role in promoting Victoria’s brightest defence talent and best technology to the world, working with contractors, supply chain companies and R&D organisations to ensure our sector grows to create more jobs and more economic benefit for the state.

Victoria’s defence sector contributes up to $8 billion to the state’s economy each year, employing around 18,500 people in 770 businesses that manufacture equipment and provide services for defence activities.