Captain Heath Robertson

CAPT Heath Robertson

Captain Heath Robertson joined the Navy in 1987. After several sea postings as an Officer of the Watch, he specialised as a Principal Warfare Officer (Navigation). He served as Navigating Officer in four ships, before concluding this phase of his career in 1998 as Operations Officer in the Guided Missile Destroyer, HMAS Hobart.

In 2000, Captain Robertson was the inaugural appointee under the Junior Command Program, taking command of HMAS Cessnock while still a Lieutenant. In 2002, he was posted as Staff Officer - Current Operations to the Commander Northern Command where he was responsible for coordinating the tactical employment of military assets in the support of Australia’s border protection policy. In 2003, he returned to his specialisation, serving as Officer-in-Charge Navigation.

Captain Robertson attended the Joint Command and Staff College in 2004 before being selected as Decommissioning Executive Officer and Commissioning Executive Officer of HMA Ships Westralia and Sirius respectively. In 2007 he was appointed Master Attendant - responsible for Port Services, Fleet Support and Naval Pilotage nationally. A highlight of this time was piloting USS Kitty Hawk into Sydney Harbour during her final visit to Australia.

Captain Robertson subsequently enjoyed the privilege of sea command for an extended period - commanding HMAS Perth from late 2008 and HMAS Parramatta from late 2009. Among many highlights was Parramatta’s operational deployment to the Middle East in 2010, which included successful anti-piracy and counter-terrorism missions; and for which he was subsequently awarded a Chief of Joint Operations Commendation (Gold). Promoted to Captain in October 2011, he served as Captain Sea Training for three years. In this role he was responsible for directing all individual and collective training conducted at sea, and assessing unit and mission readiness. He was later awarded a Conspicuous Service Cross for his achievements in this role.

Further inshore, Captain Robertson served as the Deputy Commandant at the Australian Command and Staff College then Director of Navy International Engagement at Navy Headquarters. From October 2017 until January 2020 he had the good fortune to serve overseas as the inaugural Chief of Defence Force Liaison Officer to US Indo-Pacific Command. In this role, he reported to the Chief of Defence Force on matters of mutual strategic interest and to the Chief of Joint Operations on matters of mutual operational interest.

Captain Robertson, who holds two Masters degrees, now has the honour and privilege of Command of HMAS Watson. In this position he is dual-hatted as Director Training Authority - Maritime Warfare, where he is responsible for the delivery of Navy’s Maritime Warfare training nationally.