Ken Gillespie retired from the Army after a distinguished 43 year career. He became Vice Chief of the Defence Force/Chief of Joint Operations and Chief of Army, having demonstrated high order strategic planning, engagement and implementation skills and excelling in high command appointments.

Lieutenant General Gillespie was advanced to Companion in the Military Division of the Order of Australia after receiving the honour of Officer of the Order of Australia for his service as Commander Australian Contingent, Operation Slipper, and having been a Member of the Order for his service as Commander ASTJIC. He was also awarded the Distinguished Service Cross for his command and leadership in East Timor and the Conspicuous Service Medal for his work in Namibia.

In 2009 Lieutenant General Gillespie was awarded the Legion of Merit (Commander) by the United States of America. In 2010, the Republic of Singapore awarded him the Meritorious Service Medal (Military – Pingat Jasa Gemilang).

Lieutenant General Gillespie is a director of the Boards of Australian Aerospace Limited, Indoor Skydive Australia Group (Chairman), the White Ribbon Australia (Chairman), and the Australian Drugs Foundation.

Most recently appointed a director of Australian Strategic Policy Institute, he also consults to Government Departments, companies on leadership, culture and change management and remains supportive of ex-service organisations. He is an ambassador for national bowel and prostate cancer organisations as well as “Soldier On”, a charity concerned with supporting wounded soldiers.