Media ReleaseFire & Flood Resilience22 Jan 2021

Royal Australian Navy Admiral joins Minderoo Foundation to boost resilience efforts

An exciting new appointee to Minderoo Foundation’s Fire and Flood Resilience initiative will work with the initiative’s network of partners.

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Rear Admiral Lee Goddard. Photo Credit: Nick Erickson.

Minderoo Foundation’s Fire and Flood Resilience initiative today announced the appointment of Rear Admiral Lee Goddard CSC, RAN.

RADM Goddard, who has recently completed his tenure as Commander Maritime Border Command and Commander Joint Agency Task Force Operation Sovereign Borders, will join Minderoo Foundation after a decorated career serving for over three decades in the Royal Australian Navy.

RADM Goddard’s new role will see him lead Minderoo Foundation’s Fire and Flood Resilience initiative’s network of collaborators. This will involve building strategic relationships with the rapidly growing network of 52 partners here and overseas across emergency services, government, corporates, philanthropies, communities and the research sector to deliver a range of missions. RADM Goddard will also be responsible for ground operations in support of these missions.

In September, Minderoo Foundation launched a national blueprint which outlined the pathway for Australia to become the global leader in fire and flood disaster resilience by 2025. Minderoo Foundation has committed AU$70 million to the program already and is targeting commitments of AU$500 million from local and globally aligned partners.

Minderoo Foundation’s Fire and Flood Resilience initiative CEO Adrian Turner said, “The missions we are undertaking are to detect and extinguish dangerous fires within an hour, lift the resilience of the 50 most vulnerable communities to be on par with the most resilient communities, and halve the hazard exposure in Australia’s 50 most fire and flood prone regions by 2025.

“A key part in delivering on these missions is collaborative leadership, aligning and leveraging relationships at all levels across sectors to get the job done. This is something that senior leaders in the military do well and Lee is no exception. We are honoured to have him join our team as we rapidly scale our work together with partners.

“Rear Admiral Goddard’s extensive experience as a strategic leader in the Navy and in government, as well as his expertise in conducting complex operations across borders and in the region, means he brings the deep expertise and relationships needed to lift resilience around fires and floods and protect communities in the future in collaboration with our partners,” he said.

Minderoo Foundation Chief Executive Officer Andrew Hagger also welcomed the appointment, saying Rear Admiral Goddard represents the perfect alignment of outstanding career achievements and the foundation’s core values.

“We are thrilled that Lee has chosen to join us. His experience and strategic relationships will help greatly in many areas of the foundation’s work, in particular our vitally important Fire and Flood Resilience initiative. Our foundation continues to attract and retain a high calibre of leaders and staff, working collaboratively in pursuing Andrew and Nicola Forrest’s compelling vision,” Mr Hagger said.

Prior to his promotion to Rear Admiral – the second highest rank within the Royal Australian Navy – RADM Goddard was seconded as a Branch Head to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet.

During this secondment RADM Goddard served as International Policy Branch Head and then Head of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (Papua New Guinea) Task Force. In this role he led the whole of government coordination of Australia’s logistics, event and security support to PNG for its hosting of the APEC summit in Port Moresby in 2018.

Throughout his career RADM Goddard has commanded a number of warships and served at sea aboard Australian, Canadian, Malaysian and US Navy ships, and on operations in the Middle East. He was awarded the Conspicuous Service Cross (CSC) in 2007.

RADM Goddard said, “I have enjoyed every moment of my Defence career to date and I will be transitioning from one impressive team to join another.

“I am ready now to change direction to take on the tough, persistent issues of our time with the potential to drive massive change and make maximum impact. This will ensure that we can reduce the likelihood and impact of natural disasters and increase the potential of communities to bounce back faster.

“I am excited, grounded and ready to continue to serve our community through Minderoo Foundation by making positive impact fast,” said RADM Goddard.

Minderoo Foundation has been working with communities in towns and regions across New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia since January 2020 to help the response and recovery efforts following the bushfires. This has involved delivering 256 temporary accommodation pods so people could return to their land, conducting fence repairs for farming communities, creating tool libraries to support local communities, and mental health support services for community members.

RADM Lee Goddard will join Minderoo Foundation this month and continue to serve as part of the Active Navy Reserve.

Minderoo Foundation
by Minderoo Foundation

Established by Andrew and Nicola Forrest in 2001, we are a modern philanthropic organisation seeking to break down barriers, innovate and drive positive, lasting change. Minderoo Foundation is proudly Australian, with eight key initiatives spanning from ocean research and ending slavery, to collaboration in cancer and community projects.

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