|John Graham Caligari|
21 August 1960|
|Years of service||1979–2015|
Chief Capability Development Group (2014–15)|
3rd Brigade (2006–09)
1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (1999–01)
War in Afghanistan
Officer of the Order of Australia|
Distinguished Service Cross
Lieutenant General John Graham Caligari AO, DSC (born 21 August 1960) is a retired senior officer of the Australian Army. He served as Chief Capability Development Group from October 2014 until his retirement in August 2015.
Caligari was born in Brisbane, Queensland, on 21 August 1960 to Barry John Caligari, an Army officer, and his wife Christine Graham (née Wilkie). He was educated at Marist College Canberra and the International School of Kuala Lumpur, and entered the Royal Military College, Duntroon in 1979 where he undertook training to become an officer in the Australian Army.
Upon graduating from Duntroon in 1982, Caligari was assigned to the Royal Australian Infantry Corps and was posted to the 1st Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment (1 RAR), an infantry unit that his father, Barry Caligari, was commanding at the time.
In 1989, Caligari was in the Middle East as a United Nations observer on the Lebanese/Israeli border with UNTSO, and subsequently at UNTSO Headquarters in Jerusalem (Operation Paladin). He took his wife, Narelle, a nurse, and his twin sons, then aged nine months, with him to Israel. From late 1990, he was a rifle company commander in the 1st Battalion. In 1993 he was an operations officer of the 1st Battalion Group deployed to Somalia as part of Operation Solace, for which he was awarded a Chief of the Defence Force Commendation. In June 2000, he deployed as Commander of the 1st Battalion Ready Group on HMAS Manoora for the evacuation of Australians from the Solomon Islands (Operation Plumbob).
He was deployed to East Timor after it achieved independence in 1999. "The highlight of his career" was commanding the 1st Battalion Group on operations along the Timor Leste-Indonesian border with the United Nations Transitional Administration in East Timor (UNTAET), as part of Operation Tanager. For his command and leadership on this operation he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross.
In 2007–08 Caligari commanded the Townsville-based 3rd Brigade, as a brigadier. In January 2009 he was appointed Deputy Commander, Joint Task Force 633 – Afghanistan, as part of Operation Slipper, a position he filled for six months.
He was promoted to major general in mid-2009, and appointed Head Modernisation and Strategic Plans – Army (HMSP-A). In 2012 Caligari was appointed Head Capability Systems (HCS), heading up one of Capability Development Group's two divisions. For his "distinguished service" in both of these roles, Caligari was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in the 2014 Queen's Birthday Honours.
Promoted to lieutenant general in October 2014, Caligari was appointed Chief Capability Development Group (CCDG) in succession to Vice Admiral Peter Jones. In this role he was responsible for the Department of Defence's Capability Development Group; the branch tasked to develop and gain government approval for future defence capabilities. After ten months in this role, Caligari retired in August 2015 as part of a Defence restructure that necessitated cuts to senior management. His position of CCDG was identified as redundant at 'three-star' rank level, and has been scaled down.
His father, Barry, retired as Commanding Officer of the 1st Battalion in 1983. Caligari and his father hold the distinction of being the only father-son duo in the Australian Army to have commanded the same battalion. Caligari's father was his son's commanding officer for two months when he graduated from Duntroon in 1982.
Caligari married Narelle, a nurse, on 3 January 1987 and they have three children; twin sons and a daughter. Caligari's twin sons Ben and David are currently serving officers in the Australian Army. His daughter Anne has graduated university with a Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Laws (Honours) and is currently in the Graduate Program at the Department of Defence.
Educational and professional qualifications
- 1982 – Bachelor of Arts, University of New South Wales, Royal Military College, Duntroon
- 1998 – Master of Defence Studies, University of New South Wales, Australian Defence Force Academy
- 1999 – Chief of Army’s Visiting Fellow at the Strategic and Defence Studies Centre, Australian National University
- 2004 – Master of Arts (Strategic Studies), Deakin University
- Graduate, US Army Command and General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth
- Graduate, CDSS (Centre for Defence and Strategic Studies, Australian Defence College, Canberra)
- Graduate, Joint/Combined Land Component Commanders Course, US Army War College, Carlisle
- Graduate, Australian Institute of Company Directors, having served as Chairman of the Army Credit Union and a member of the Board of Frontline Defence Services
- 2006 – Completed the Harvard Australia Leadership Program
Honours and awards
|Officer of the Order of Australia (AO)||9 June 2014 "For distinguished service as Head Modernisation and Strategic Planning-Army and Head Systems Capability Development Group."|
|Member of the Order of Australia (AM)||26 January 2007 "For exceptional performance of duties in command and senior Army staff appointments."|
|Distinguished Service Cross (DSC)||26 January 2002, CO 1 RAR Battalion Group on Operation TANAGER, East Timor, 2000–2001.|
|Australian Active Service Medal|||
|Australian Service Medal|||
|Defence Force Service Medal with four clasps|||
|Australian Defence Medal|||
|United Nations medal for Truce Supervision Organization||(United Nations)|
|United Nations medal for Transitional Administration in East Timor||(United Nations)|
|NATO Medal for ISAF||(Northern Atlantic Treaty Organisation)|
- Chief of Defence Force Commendation – December 1993 – Operations Officer, 1 RAR on Operation SOLACE, Somalia 1993
- "Lieutenant General John Graham Caligari". Who's Who in Australia Online. ConnectWeb. Retrieved 11 October 2015.
- Banham, Cynthia, Model of a modern digger, 15 March 2008, Sydney Morning Herald
- Biography Archived 15 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine., 6 August 2009, www.eurekacouncil.com.au
- Johnston, Jessica, Salute to a military man – 3rd Brigade boss Brigadier John Caligari says goodbye to Townsville, 22 November 2008, Townsville Bulletin
- "Major General J.G (John) Caligari, DSC, AM, Head Capability Systems (HCS)" (PDF). Department of Defence website. Canberra, Australia: Commonwealth of Australia. 24 September 2012. Retrieved 6 November 2013.
- "Officer (AO) in the Military Division of the Order of Australia" (PDF). Queen's Birthday 2014 Honours List. Australian Honours Secretariat. Retrieved 9 June 2014.
- "New Chief of Capability Development Group announced". Defence News and Media. Department of Defence. 28 July 2014. Archived from the original on 9 August 2014. Retrieved 28 July 2014.
- "Defence secretary asks for SES, EL2 voluntary redundancies". The Mandarin. 10 September 2015. Retrieved 11 October 2015.
- National Medal, CALIGARI, Barry John, 14 July 1977, www.itsanhonour.gov.au
- National Medal – 1st Clasp, CALIGARI, Barry John, 3 September 1985, www.itsanhonour.gov.au
- Australia Day Honours, 2007 Archived 4 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine., www.govhouse.qld.gov.au
- Member of the Order of Australia (AM), 26 January 2007
- Distinguished Service Cross (Australian), (DSC), 26 January 2002, www.itsanhonour.gov.au
- Presentation, by MAJGEN John Caligari DSC AM, to the Defence Reserves Association (DRA) Conference, 22 August 2009, www.dra.org.au
- Highlighting Strategic Plans To Modernise The Australian Army’s Fleet And Its Capabilities, Armoured Vehicles Australia Conference, 5–6 November 2009, Hyatt Hotel, Canberra, ACT
- Army – The Soldiers' Newspaper, Edition 1229, 18 Feb 2010, Pg 18: How well do you know your generals?
- Photo of Brigadier John Caligari by Andrew Taylor, 14 March 2008, Sydney Morning Herald.
Vice Admiral Peter Jones
| Chief Capability Development Group
Air Vice Marshal Mel Hupfeld