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Vice Chief of the Defence Force

Force Design Division

Force Design Division

Force Design Division's role is to test the force in being, provide preparedness assurance, design and guide the development of a balanced and affordable future force, in order to provide the Government of Australia a capable, agile and potent Joint Force.

Force Design Division (FDD) achieves this by providing an enduring force design cycle that ensures a joint force by design. FDD manages joint concepts and preparedness to enable the joint force in achieving Defence objectives. Further, FDD develops and tests force options in order to deliver a balanced and affordable Future Force that protects Australia and its national interests. .


Head Force Design

Air Vice-Marshal Steve Roberton, DSC, AM

HFD AVM-Roberton
AVM Steve Roberton

AVM ‘Zed' Roberton is a Category A Fighter Pilot who joined as a direct entry pilot trainee after completing a Bachelor of Science at Queensland University. AVM Roberton flew fighter tours at Number 3 Squadron RAAF Williamtown and an exchange flying F/A-18s with the United States Marine Corps.

He completed joint staff tours and Command and Staff College before deploying for Operations Slipper and Falconer; for which he was awarded a Chief of Air Force Commendation.

AVM Roberton commanded Number 75 Squadron before leading the transition to F/A-18F Super Hornet. He commanded Number 82 Wing at RAAF Amberley and completed the UK's Higher Command and Staff College in 2012. He returned on promotion as Director General Aerospace Development.

AVM Roberton was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in 2012 and commanded the inaugural Air Task Group 630 on Operation OKRA, for which he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross. He took command of Air Combat Group in 2015 and went on to assume the Air Commander Australia role in May 2017. Following completion of his time as Air Commander in June 2019, AVM Roberton has assumed the role of Head Force Design in VCDF Executive.

AVM Roberton is married to Libby, and together they focus on ballet, rugby and surfing with their three children: Isabella, Corey and Ben.