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12 - 15 September 2023

Excel - London

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Nick Washer

Rear Admiral Nick Washer

Director of Operations, Defence Digital, Ministry of Defence

Rear Admiral Nick Washer joined Defence Digital on promotion as Director Operations in Mar 21, where he is responsible across Defence for customer engagement, operational planning, operational service management, defensive cyber operations, the management of Defence’s electro-magnetic spectrum and high grade messaging services.

He joined the Royal Navy as a Warfare Officer in 1990, having graduated in Physics with Mathematics at Reading University. His early career was at sea in Frigates and Destroyers, as an Officer of the Watch, Signal Communications Officer and Fighter Controller. In 1998, he specialised in Communications and Electronic Warfare (Principal Warfare Officer (CEW)) and then stood by HMS OCEAN in build, serving as the PWO and subsequently the Operations Officer for her first operational deployment. Thereafter, he joined HMS ILLUSTRIOUS in February 2000, as the Fleet Flagship’s Group Warfare Officer responsible for communications and deployed to the Gulf and Sierra Leone, and latterly in support of post 9/11 Coalition operations East of Suez, Operation ORACLE.

Command roles have included HMS ATHERSTONE(Jul 02-Jun 04), a Mine Counter Measures Vessel; ‘The Commander’ of HMS ALBION(Sep10-Mar12), the Fleet’s High Readiness Flagship, where he deployed to the Mediterranean in the wake of the ‘Arab Spring’ and prepared the ship for extended readiness and regeneration. At formation level, he assumed the role of Deputy United Kingdom Maritime Component Commander in Bahrain (Oct 15-Jul 16) responsible for commanding the Headquarters and planning and delivering UK maritime operations East of Suez alongside US Naval forces, on behalf of UK Chief of Joint Operations.

Ashore, staff appointments have been varied including: Advanced Command and Staff Course, both as a student and directing staff; a role responsible for Surface Flotilla, and NATO and Australian/Canadian/US/UK doctrine development; a tour on the staff of the Senior British Military Advisor in US Central Command (Oct 07), with the lead for the Horn of Africa, the Levant and all things Maritime; and a capability development role in the Information Superiority Division in Navy Command responsible for future Communications and IT. Ministry of Defence assignments have been in Security, Policy and Operations, both with pan Whitehall and International responsibility; he was also non-resident Defence Attaché for Portugal and Cape Verde in his ‘spare’ time (Mar 12 – Sep 13). Prior to assuming his current role, he was ACOS J6 and Chief Information Officer at PJHQ; responsible for planning, delivery and the assurance of the Communication, Information services and Defensive Cyber to enable Chief of Joint Operations command of deployed global operations.


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