David Fawcett

David Julian Fawcett (born 23 October 1963) is an Australian Liberal Party politician serving as Senator for South Australia since 2011. Fawcett served in the Morrison Government as Assistant Minister for Defence from 2018 to 2019.

David Fawcett
Senator the Hon. David J Fawcett
Assistant Minister for Defence
In office
26 August 2018 (2018-08-26)  26 May 2019
Prime MinisterScott Morrison
Preceded byMichael McCormack (2016)
Succeeded byAlex Hawke
Senator for South Australia
Assumed office
1 July 2011
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Wakefield
In office
9 October 2004  24 November 2007
Preceded byNeil Andrew
Succeeded byNick Champion
Personal details
Born (1963-10-23) 23 October 1963
Narrabri, New South Wales, Australia
Political party Liberal Party of Australia
ResidenceAdelaide, South Australia, Australia
Alma materUniversity of New South Wales
OccupationPilot & Army Officer
Awards Australian Defence Medal
Defence Long Service Medal (with clasp)
Military service
Allegiance Commonwealth of Australia
Branch/service Australian Army
Years of service1982–2004
Rank Lieutenant Colonel
UnitAustralian Army Aviation

Fawcett was previously elected to federal parliament, serving for one term as member for the House of Representatives seat of Wakefield in South Australia, elected at the 2004 election.

Early life

Fawcett spent part of his childhood in Thailand where his father worked as an agricultural scientist.

Fawcett was an officer with the Australian Army from 1982 to 2004. He was educated at Royal Military College, Duntroon and the University of New South Wales, where he graduated in science.

He trained as a pilot and became a helicopter pilot for 1st Aviation Regiment. He was involved in operations across Australia and Papua New Guinea.

The next phase of his career was as a flying instructor, learning this role at the RAF Central Flying School in England. He served at the Australian School of Army Aviation and became Senior Flying Instructor for Utility and Reconnaissance Helicopters.

In 1993 he returned to the UK, studying at the Empire Test Pilots' School to become a test pilot. He was posted to Royal Australian Air Force Aircraft Research and Development Unit (ARDU) at Edinburgh, South Australia as an Army helicopter test pilot. He held a number of positions in ARDU and the Defence Acquisition Organisation, culminating in his final appointment as Commanding Officer,[1] responsible for flight test programs for all of the Australian Defence Force aircraft. He reached the rank of Lieutenant Colonel before leaving the ADF to enter politics.[2]


Prior to the 2004 election, the seat of Wakefield had been dramatically altered in a redistribution. The seat had long been a safe rural Liberal seat stretching from the Yorke Peninsula through to the Riverland and the state's border, but upon the abolition of the safe metropolitan Labor seat of Bonython, Wakefield was moved to take in the outer northern Adelaide suburb of Elizabeth and part of Salisbury, spanning through to the rural mid-north town of Clare—roughly a fifth the size of its former incarnation. The Liberals held the old Wakefield with a comfortably safe two-party margin of 14.6 percent, but the new Wakefield was notionally a marginal Labor seat with a two-party margin of just 1.3 percent.

The previous Liberal member, Neil Andrew, believed this made Wakefield unwinnable and opted not to recontest the seat in 2004. However, Fawcett narrowly defeated the Labor candidate, ex-Bonython MP Martyn Evans, on a swing of 2.2 percent, taking the seat on Family First preferences. Despite an extensive campaign at the 2007 election, Fawcett was defeated by Labor's Nick Champion, suffering a large swing of 7.2 percent. However, Fawcett was elected as a Liberal Senator in South Australia at the 2010 election and assumed his seat on 1 July 2011.[3][4]

Personal life

Fawcett is married with two children. His family roots are in Kapunda, South Australia and completed high school at Prince Alfred College[5] in Adelaide before joining the army. He has been involved in leadership positions at Clovercrest Baptist Church in Modbury North, Adelaide and Tyndale Christian School in Salisbury East, Adelaide. He has been a contributing member of the Society of Experimental Test Pilots and the Australian Flight Test Society.


  1. "Senator David Fawcett". Senators and Members. Parliament of Australia. Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  2. "Profile – Senator David Fawcett". Pro Aviation. Retrieved 23 August 2018.
  3. "Senate Results - South Australia - 2010 Federal Election". Retrieved 15 September 2010.
  4. "Family First misses out on Senate seat in South Australia". AAP. 15 September 2010. Retrieved 15 September 2010.
  5. "Prince Alfred College Chronicle", 1975 (Annual, Prince Alfred College, Kent Town)


Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Neil Andrew
Member for Wakefield
Succeeded by
Nick Champion
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