Army’s youngest corps turns 30

The Australian Army Public Relations Service (AAPRS) celebrated its 30th anniversary on March 31.

CAPTIONAustralian Army Public Relations Service’s Corporal Andrew Sleeman and Head of Corps Colonel Jason Logue cut the birthday cake at 1st Joint Public Affairs Unit, Canberra, in celebration of the corps’ 30th birthday. Story by Major Lily Mulholland. Photo by Corporal Lisa Sherman.

Built on a proud history of war correspondence and image collection through two world wars, Korea, Malaya and Vietnam, Army public affairs cameramen and officers originally formed part of the Army Education Corps, known as Royal Australian Army Educational Corps.

Since the corps’ formal establishment on March 31, 1994, AAPRS members have served on every major operation, covered every mission rehearsal exercise, and documented countless ceremonial and diplomatic activities in Australian and overseas. They generate content for the Service newspapers you read today and they contribute to the defence and protection of Australia’s national interests.

At the 30th anniversary celebrations in Canberra, newly appointed AAPRS Head of Corps Colonel Jason Logue took a moment to reflect on the important work the corps has done for Defence and will continue to do into the future.

“Look around you – the people gathered here today represent the best of Army’s public affairs capability. Between us we have deployed on dozens of operations and exercises, conducted training for coalition and partner forces, and developed doctrine and public affairs training to fully integrate the capability with how the ADF employs military power,” he said.

“We have come a long way since those exciting days in the 1990s and we are well placed to handle the challenges of the complex information environment we operate in today.”

AAPRS Colonel Commandant, Colonel (retd) Andrew Reynolds, remarked on the corps’ proud history.

“As your first Director-General Public Information, and now as your Colonel Commandant, I stand in awe of what we have achieved over the past 30 years. I am proud of our achievements and you should be too.”

First Head of Corps, Colonel (retd) Bob Crawshaw, noted how dramatically Army and ADF communications have changed.

“Different personalities, new doctrines, better training and state-of-the-art equipment; this has happened while advances in technology have revolutionised public relations, advertising and the media, and reshaped how organisations, large and small, engage the Australian community,” he said.

“Amidst these changes, AAPRS’s mission has not wavered: to inform Australians about what their servicemen and women do and to build trust and understanding with the public.

“I hail the corps for 30 good years of bridging divides, forging connections and showcasing the remarkable spirit of the Australian fighting man and woman. I anticipate three more decades of success and achievement.”

Celebrations were also held in Sydney and Brisbane, bringing together current and former members.

Warrant Officer Class 2 Jake Sims said having soldiers and officers from vastly different backgrounds made Army’s capability strong.

“We have a deep understanding of and commitment to Army, and we use our military knowledge to shape the way we use imagery and words to tell Army’s story to the Australian community,” he said.

“I’m proud of the way our imagery specialists, military reporters and public affairs officers work together to tell that story and I look forward to seeing what the corps achieves over the next 30 years.”


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