Who we are

Defence NSW is part of Investment NSW, a new NSW Government agency reinforcing the State’s position as the economic engine room of the country.

Defence NSW supports defence and industry by:

  • being the contact point for the defence, defence-related Commonwealth departments, defence companies, defence industry bodies, and defence-related research organisations
  • being a dedicated organisation that will identify and drive opportunities to collaborate, partner and support the growth of the NSW defence sector
  • being responsible for defence and industry attraction and expansion in NSW
  • promoting the state’s defence industry and research capabilities
  • supporting access for NSW defence related companies to procurement and supply chain opportunities both locally and internationally
  • being inclusive of key stakeholders in the NSW defence sector.

We cooperate with industry networks in order to promote NSW defence industry. Networks we work with include:


Director of Defence Mike GallagherMike Gallagher was appointed as the Director Defence NSW in March 2021 and leads a dedicated team within Investment NSW to execute the NSW Government Defence and Industry Strategy - Strong, Smart and Connected.

Mike enjoyed a distinguished 22 year career in the Royal Australian Navy (RAN), specialising in Submarines. He undertook a series of appointments in Australia’s Oberon Class submarines before successfully completing the Submarine Command Course and is a graduate of the Royal Navy Staff Course.  Following his exchange with the Royal Navy, during which time he commanded the UK submarine HMS OSIRIS, Mike led the training and development program for the new Collins Class submarines. Concurrently, he was in Command of the second of the class, HMAS FARNCOMB until its delivery in 1997.

Mike has been active in the defence industry for over 22 years.  After retiring from the RAN he has held a number of senior executive roles with Raytheon Australia, L3 Oceania and Northrop Grumman Australia that serve as a foundation to lead the future growth of the NSW defence portfolio.

Defence Advocate

Air Marshall (Ret) John Harvey Defence Advocate

Air Marshal (Ret) John Harvey AM, was appointed as Defence Advocate for NSW in May 2016 and is a retired Air Marshal in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF).

Air Marshal (Ret) Harvey's Australian Defence Force career spanned more than 30 years, with early emphasis on employment as a navigator and weapons officer in Canberra and F-111 aircraft and later in more diverse roles such as technical intelligence, military strategy, visiting Fellow Strategic and Defence Studies Centre at the Australian National University, instructor at the Australian Defence College and Defence Attaché Southern Europe.

He has had extensive experience in the Defence capability development process in his appointments as Air Warfare Adviser within Force Development and Analysis, Director General Aerospace Development, Director General New Air Combat Capability, and Program Manager New Air Combat Capability (NACC) within the then Defence Materiel Organisation. On 26 January 2008 (Australia Day Honours), he was appointed Member of the Order of Australia (Military division) for “exceptional service to the Australian Defence Force and Royal Australian Air Force” in that role.

In October 2010, John was promoted to the rank of Air Marshal and appointed as Chief Capability Development Group (CCDG) with responsibility for requirements development and obtaining government approval for approximately 200 projects with a total value of approximately $200 billion. Roles required in that position included; Chair of the Defence Capability Committee, Chair of the Options Review Committee, and member of the Defence Capability & Investment Committee and the Defence Committee.

Since retiring from the RAAF in 2012, John has completed a PhD in Computer Science at the UNSW (Canberra) and is currently providing aerospace and defence advice to the Department of Defence as a Reserve Officer. He has led a number of Australian industry delegations overseas (including to the US, UK, France, Italy, Singapore, Malaysia and the UAE) and conducted a review of Priority Industry Capabilities for the [then] DMO. John was a member of the Reference Group for the Board of Airservices Australia and has provided consulting support to KPMG, Jacobs, QinetiQ and ICCPM.