Chief Commercial Officer

Darren Kirkby

Chief Commercial Officer
Darren is the Chief Commercial Officer
Darren joined the Royal Australian Navy in 1986 as part of the first intake at the newly established Australian Defence Force Academy, graduating as an officer in 1988, and received his Bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering with first class honours from the University of New South Wales in 1989.
 
Darren's early career as an engineer in the Navy saw him join the Submarine squadron located at HMAS Platypus in Sydney in 1990, spending time at sea on a number of Oberon Class submarines, with his final sea posting as Weapons Electrical Engineering Officer of HMAS Orion based out of HMAS Stirling from 1992 to 1994.   Following this, Darren spent three years at HMAS Watson in Sydney, including roles in weapons instruction, crew certification, and Collin's Class combat systems integration.    Darren then moved to Melbourne to take up a role as Combat Systems Manager in the newly formed ANZAC Class Logistics Office in early 1998, and acted as the Commonwealth lead in the establishment and first 2.5 years of operation for the first In Service Support contract awarded to CelsiusTech (later to become SAAB).
 
Darren then left the Navy in 2000, and spent four years working outside of Australian defence finishing as General Manager for an engineering and integrated logistics consulting company supporting the Royal Malaysian Navy Offshore Patrol Vessel programme, working between Hamburg and Kuala Lumpur.  Following this, Darren moved back into Australian defence industry taking up a role in Tenix as Alliance Engineering Manager for the Anti Ship Missile Defence (ASMD) project in 2004.  As the project progressed, Darren's role expanded to become the BAE Systems project lead for ASMD, including the delivery of stage 1 capability on the lead ship HMAS Perth in mid 2011, and as the capture manager for securing the follow on contract to upgrade the next 7 ANZAC Class ships with ASMD.
 
Darren was appointed as General Manager Maritime Sustainment for BAE Systems in September 2012, and took up a new role as Director for the Maritime Business Unit in June 2018, covering both the Maritime Sustainment and Henderson lines of business.  Darren has responsibility for delivery of sustainment and capability upgrade services to Navy across 6 classes of ship, ANZAC, FFG, LHD, Hydrographic (2 classes) and DDG, and provides leadership for a geographically distributed team of over 1000 project managers, engineers, technicians, logistics support personnel, and trades.
 
In April 2019, Darren took up the role of Chief Commercial Officer for BAE Systems Australia with functional responsibility for Commercial, Procurement, Project Management and Supply Chain.
 
Darren is married to Paula, and they have three grown up children.  They live in Melbourne, and enjoy time at home with family and friends on weekends.  Darren likes to spend time in the garden, or at the gym, to relax, and is a keen skier.