Born into an Army family, Sir Peter Cosgrove attended Waverley College in Sydney before graduating from the Royal Military College Duntroon in 1968. His first deployment was in Malaysia with the 1st Battalion RAR and later in Vietnam he commanded an infantry platoon. He served as Commander of INTERFET in East Timor in 1999 overseeing that country’s transition to independence. Then promoted to Chief of Army and later Chief of the Australian Defence Force. He retired from the ADF in 2005 serving on several boards before becoming a Knight in the Order of Australia when sworn in as Governor-General in 2014 and serving until June 2019. Sir Peter was appointed a Commander of the Royal Victorian Order by Her Majesty the Queen in August 2019.
In retirement, he remains involved with defence, health and other charitable organisations. In January 2020 Sir Peter accepted the voluntary role as chairman of the Business Council of Australia’s Community Rebuilding Initiative in response to the 2019/20 bushfires, leading a group of eminent business and community leaders to work with government and the community in the rebuilding process.
Sir Peter is also an avid sports fan with a particular interest in Rugby and Cricket. Married to Lynne since 1976, they have three sons and delight in their three young grandchildren.
Additional information about some of Sir Peter’s awards and honours:-
- The Military Cross (MC) for his performance and leadership in Vietnam during an assault on enemy positions (1971)
- Member in the Military Division of the Order of Australia (AM) for service in command 1983-84.
- Promoted to Companion of Order of Australia (AC) for leadership of INTERFET
- Australian of the Year in 2001
- Knight in the Order of Australia in 2014
- Commander of the Royal Victorian Order, appointed by Her Majesty the Queen in August 2019.