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NZDF Personnel Named in The Queen's Birthday Honours List 2016

6 June 2016

Five current and former New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) personnel have been named in the Queen’s Birthday 2016 Honours List today.

The recipients are as follows:

Appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM):

  • Air Vice-Marshal Michael Yardley DSD RNZAF (Rtd)
    For services to the New Zealand Defence Force, lately as Chief of Air Force.

Appointed a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM):

  • Dr Ralph Marrett
    For services to the Defence Technology Agency.

The New Zealand Order of Merit recognises those who, in any field of endeavour, have rendered meritorious service to the Crown and the nation or who have become distinguished by their eminence, talents, contributions or other merits.

Three recipients are to receive the New Zealand Distinguished Service Decoration (DSD).  Two of these are for service in Iraq and their names cannot be made public.  The recipients are:

  • Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Clinton Childs RNZIR
    For services with the headquarters of the Multi-National Force and Observers and as commander of the New Zealand Contingent in the Sinai.
  • “Serviceman J” and “Serviceman C”, both of whom demonstrated distinguished service while on deployment in Iraq in 2015, making significant contributions towards the success of multi-national operations.

The New Zealand Distinguished Service Decoration (DSD) recognises distinguished military service by regular, territorial and reserve members of the New Zealand Defence Force, including command and leadership and service in an operational environment, or in support of operations.

CITATIONS

Appointed an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM)

Air Vice-Marshal Michael Edward (Mike) YARDLEY DSD RNZAF (Rtd)

For services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Air Vice-Marshal Mike Yardley completed his term as Chief of Air Force in early 2016, having been appointed to the role in May 2014.

As Chief of Air Force, Air Vice-Marshal Yardley has led the successful introduction into service of enhanced military air capabilities for the New Zealand Defence Force, including the Seasprite, A109 and NH90 helicopters and upgrades to the Orion and Hercules fleets. He also led the significant improvement in the safety of Defence Force air operations, and was recently instrumental in ensuring the early deployment of Orion aircraft to the Middle East in support of New Zealand’s interests in the region. He has held a number of roles and risen through the ranks of the Royal New Zealand Air Force since his enlistment in 1981 as a General Duties Navigator. In the 2000s he was the Project Manager for the P-3 Orion Systems Upgrade Project, for which he was recognised with the award of the Distinguished Service Decoration in 2007. Prior to his appointment as Chief of Air Force Air Vice-Marshal Yardley held the role of Chief of Staff, Headquarters New Zealand Defence Force, and assumed the role of Air Component Commander in 2013.

To be made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM)

Dr Ralph Marrett

For services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Dr Ralph Marrett has held a range of appointments at all levels within the Defence Technology Agency (DTA), beginning in 1968 as a scientist at the Naval Research Laboratory. 

Dr Marrett has played a key role in representing New Zealand in multi-lateral defence science relationships and served for several years as the New Zealand Principal in the Technical Cooperation programme (TTCP), which involves more than 1200 scientists across five nations. As Executive Chair of the TTCP Maritime Division he established award-winning research and development in the area of net-centric warfare studies and experimentation. He has received awards for leadership and his work on anti-submarine warfare, as well as a distinguished service award for his outstanding lifetime contribution to international defence science. During the period 1985 to 2008 when aspects of New Zealand’s defence relationship with the United States were struggling he played a significant role in ensuring defence science managed to continue relatively unimpaired. In particular, when the United States was unwilling to release information that was vital to protection of the Exclusive Economic Zone, he played a central role in gaining access to that information. Dr Marrett’s foresight ensured DTA and NZDF were well placed to take advantage of positive changes in diplomatic and military relationships with the United States.

To receive the New Zealand Distinguished Service Decoration (DSD)

Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Clinton Childs

For services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Lieutenant Colonel Anthony Childs has been commander of the New Zealand contingent at the headquarters of the Multi-National Force and Observers (MFO) in the Sinai Peninsula.

The environment Lieutenant Colonel Childs has had to manage as the Senior National Officer and Head of Plans in the Operations Branch has been drastically different from what was expected pre-deployment, particularly the changing threat levels, and he has been adaptive in his leadership to enhance the operational skills of New Zealand personnel in theatre to keep pace with and mitigate the heightened security situation. He implemented training and force protection measures for the New Zealand contingent,  which have been extended throughout the MFO, ensuring that the MFO as a whole was better able to respond appropriately to the changing situation in the Sinai. He has been a key planner in formulating options for the future shape of the MFO in response to the new operating environment. All of this has been undertaken while maintaining relationships with, and the support of eleven other national contingents and a large civilian staff. Senior staff at MFO have expressed that Lieutenant Colonel Childs has made an invaluable contribution during a period of intense activity and dramatic change as one of the highest performing staff officers within the MFO headquarters.

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Serviceman J

For services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Public citation
Serviceman J demonstrated distinguished service while on deployment in Iraq in 2015, making significant contributions towards the success of multi-national operations. Serviceman J's distinguished service was in keeping with the finest traditions of New Zealand's military record.

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Serviceman C

For services to the New Zealand Defence Force

Public citation
Serviceman C demonstrated distinguished service while on deployment in Iraq in 2015, making significant contributions towards the success of multi-national operations. Serviceman C's distinguished service was in keeping with the finest traditions of New Zealand's military record.

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