Rear Admiral Allan du Toit

Head of Navy Capability (2012)

RADM Allan du Toit

Allan du Toit, was raised and educated in Durban, South Africa. He joined the South African Navy as a Midshipman in 1975 and graduated from the South African Military Academy in 1979. He then served at sea in frigates, submarines and mine warfare vessels and trained as a Principal Warfare Officer specialising in mine warfare. du Toit later served as a member of the directing staff at the South African Naval Staff college. He moved to Australia in early 1987, where he accepted a commission in the Royal Australian Navy (RAN) as a Lieutenant Commander.

He undertook extensive service at sea in the RAN and was Commanding Officer of HMAS Tobruk during Operation BEL ISI in Bougainville during 1998 and the task group commander for the initial RAN Operation SLIPPER deployment to the Arabian Gulf in 2001-02. In recognition of this operational service Allan du Toit was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in the 2004 Australia Day Honors List. During September 2007 to March 2008 he commanded Task Force 158 in the Northern Arabian Gulf, commanding maritime forces from Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom, Singapore and Iraq. In this later deployment he became the first non United States Navy officer to command the multi-national maritime interception force conducting the enforcement of United Nations sanction against Iraq.

In addition to extensive service at sea in the RAN, du Toit also served in a wide range of single-service and joint appointments ashore, including Director General Joint Operations and Plans (2005-06), Director General Military Strategic Commitments (2006-07) and Commander Border Protection Command during May 2008-February 2010. His command appointments also include Head Navy People and Reputation, Head of Navy Capability, Commander Australian Amphibious Task Group and Commander Australian Amphibious and Afloat Support Force Element Group.

He completed study at the Royal Australian Navy Staff College (HMAS Penguin) and the Australian Joint Services Staff College, and has undertaken professional training courses in Australia, the United States, the United Kingdom and South Africa during his naval career. Rear Admiral du Toit retired from the RAN in 2016, but has remained active in maritime history and strategy circles. He holds a Bachelor of Military Science degree from the University of Stellenbosch, a Master of Defence Studies degree from the University of New South Wales and a Graduate Diploma in Strategic Studies.

He is both an accomplished naval historian and avid student of contemporary defence and naval affairs and has written two books on warships and naval history, the first as a 15-year old school boy which was published while he was serving as a Midshipman. He regularly contributes to professional naval conferences and journals in both Australia and overseas.