Rear Admiral Trevor Barmby Ruting

Trevor Barmby Ruting was born on 14 January 1952 in Sydney, NSW. He entered the RAN College as a junior entry Cadet Midshipman in January 1968, undertaking engineering studies at the College and the University of NSW. Ruting was promoted Sub Lieutenant in 1972, completing his engineering studies at the end of 1973 and awarded a Bachelor of Engineering. He joined his first ship, the destroyer tender HMAS Stalwart, under training in January 1974.

Sub Lieutenant Ruting also served, under training, in the aircraft carrier HMAS Melbourne during August 1974-August 1975 before he proceeded to Britain to undertake the Royal Navy Marine Engineer Application Course. After successfully completing this course he served in the frigate HMS Torquay. Ruting was promoted Lieutenant in 1975 with seniority backdated to September 1974.

Upon returning to Australia he served in the aircraft carrier Melbourne (October 1976-June 1978) and took part in Exercise RIMPAC 77 off Hawaii (March 1977) and the Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee cruise to the United Kingdom (May-September 1977) before the carrier undertook a major refit in 1978. Lieutenant Ruting returned to Britain in October 1978 to undertake the Naval Constructors Course, to qualify in warship building techniques and practices. On completion of the course he was awarded a MSc in Naval Architecture from the University of London.

Ruting returned to Australia and joined the destroyer HMAS Brisbane, in October 1980, as the marine engineer and was promoted Lieutenant Commander on 30 June 1981. During his time on board, Brisbane deployed to the North West Indian Ocean (April -July 1981) as part of the Australian commitment to strengthening western naval forces in that region following the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan. He served again in Melbourne briefly during September 1981-January 1982 before being appointed to the Directorate of Naval Ship Design in Navy Office, Canberra putting his naval constructor skills to better use.

After two years ashore he returned to sea, in January 1984, as the marine engineer in the destroyer HMAS Perth. He joined the ship while it was in refit and when this finished, in July 1984, the destroyer conducted the normal round of trials and workups before operating in Australian and Southeast Asian waters on various exercises. Trevor Ruting was promoted Commander in December 1985 and soon after returned to Navy Office to work in the Directorate of Forward Design (Ship Projects). In January 1988 he was posted to HMAS Waterhen, in Sydney, as Principal Engineer Officer for the Commander Australian Mine Warfare and Patrol Boat Force. He completed the Joint Service Staff Course during January-June 1989.

During July 1989-June 1990 he was a staff officer in Canberra assisting the RAN Officers Career Study (ROCS) before being appointed at Deputy Director of Naval Policy Coordination in the Directorate of Naval Policy Development. This position also undertook significant work coordinating the RAN's two ocean basing policy as more RAN ships operated from HMAS Stirling and plans were formulated to have the future Collins Class submarines based in Western Australia. He was subsequently awarded the Conspicuous Service Cross (CSC) in January 1993 for conspicuous service as the Deputy Director of Naval Policy (Planning) and as the Two Ocean Basing Co-ordination Officer.

In June 1992 Trevor Ruting was promoted Captain and appointed as the Manager Codification and Cataloguing and Allowances. Despite its name, this agency was a vital cog in the RAN's ability to fight and win at sea. It enabled the in-depth analysis of what spare parts were required to maintain all the RANs equipment, both at sea and ashore, how many needed to be purchased, usage rates and identified those that were mission critical.

After 18 months in this appointment Captain Ruting joined the staff at Maritime Headquarters in Sydney in early 1994, as the Chief Staff Officer (Engineering) responsible to the Maritime Commander for the engineering seaworthiness of the fleet. This was an exceptionally busy period for the Navy as it worked hard to meet operational commitments and keep its aging fleet of guided missile destroyers, River Class destroyer escorts, Oberon Class submarines in service. The purchase of two 20 year old ex-USN Landing Ships Tank (LST) in 1994, to address a gap in amphibious capability, added additional pressure. The upkeep requirements for these older ships was extensive and this had a flow on effect to the onboard maintenance regimes and engineering personnel responsible for managing them.

In January 1996 Trevor Ruting returned to Navy Headquarters in Canberra as the Director of the Offshore Patrol Combatant Project (a joint venture between Australia and Malaysia) in which Australia would replace its aging Fremantle Class patrol boats. The project was to build offshore patrol vessels in Australia, for both the RAN and the Royal Malaysian Navy, but it was cancelled when Malaysia decided to procure vessels from another source. In March 1997 he undertook a review into Naval Aviation Force Management.

Ruting was promoted Commodore in December 1997 and appointed as the Director General Surface Warfare Systems. This was followed by a posting to Support Command - Australia as the Commodore Logistics - Navy in early 2000. The following year he became the Director General Maritime Support within the Defence Materiel Organisation (DMO). Commodore Ruting was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in June 2001 for exceptional service to the Royal Australian Navy as Offshore Patrol Boat Project Director, as Director General Surface Warfare Systems, and as Commodore Logistics - Navy.

In February 2002 he was appointed as the Director General Major Surface Combatants within the DMO. In August 2003 he became the Acting Head Maritime Systems within the DMO and was confirmed in that position when he was promoted Rear Admiral on 18 February 2004. During his tenure he oversaw the introduction into service of several Armidale Class patrol boats, the last of the Anzac Class frigates, the acquisition of the tanker HMAS Sirius and the upgrade of the FFGs.

Rear Admiral Trevor Ruting retired from the RAN in August 2007. Since then he has been active as a member of the Defence Seaworthiness Board panel and the Defence South Australia Advisory Board.