Rear Admiral John Rush

John ‘Jack’ Rush was admitted to the Victorian Bar in 1978 and appointed as a Queen's Counsel in 1992. He was a member of the Victorian Bar Council from 1991 to 2003 serving as Chairman during 2002-03 and also a member of the Law Council of Australia from 1999 to 2003.

He was commissioned as a Lieutenant in the Royal Australian Navy Reserve in February 1981 and since that time he has appeared in numerous courts-martial, boards of inquiry and CDF inquiries.  During 2005-06 he served as the Counsel for families and the next of kin at the RAN Board of Inquiry into the 2005 crash of an RAN Sea King helicopter in Indonesia that killed nine Australian Defence Force personnel. He also served as Counsel Assisting the Chief of Defence Force Inquiry into the circumstances of the loss of the pilot and an SAS soldier as a consequence of a Black Hawk helicopter crash on HMAS Kanimbla off Fiji during late 2006, and as Counsel Assisting the Chief of Defence Force Inquiry into the loss of HMAS Sydney (II) in 1941. During 2012-13 he served as head of the Victorian Navy Reserve Legal panel.  He received a Chief of Navy commendation for exceptional service to the Navy in 2013.

In 2011, he was appointed by the Victorian Government to conduct an inquiry into the command, management and function of the senior structure of Victoria Police. In 2013, he was appointed Senior Counsel assisting the Royal Commission established to investigate the consequences of the Black Saturday bushfires, of February 2009, in which 173 people died.  In November 2013, he was appointed as a Justice of the Supreme Court of Victoria, an appointment he held until his resignation from the bench in February 2016.  In his civilian practice he specialised in trial and appellate advocacy in all Australian jurisdictions.

Commodore Rush was appointed as acting Deputy Judge Advocate General – Navy with effect 30 July 2014 (confirmed on 14 May 2015) and upon promotion to Rear Admiral was appointed as the Judge Advocate General on 31 July 2021.

Rear Admiral Rush was appointed as a Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in the 2022 Queens Birthday Honours list 'For exceptional service to the law, notably as an Australian Defence Force senior legal officer, and to the community of Victoria.'