How cooking fuelled desire to join Defence

How cooking fuelled desire to join Defence

Growing up in Redland Bay while completing her secondary schooling at Our Lady’s College, Annerley, Squadron Leader Lauren Bishop spent most summer holidays on Stradbroke Island with her grandparents, rather than picking strawberries in the local area.

While fishing and swimming at Point Lookout, she had a strong desire to learn how to cook and started her first job as an apprentice chef at a “fine-dining” restaurant in Brisbane.

Her love of cooking led her to join the Australian Defence Force as a cook, with a view to saving enough money to continue her cooking training in Italy.

Twenty years later Squadron Leader Bishop is now the Royal Australian Air Force’s Senior Movements Officer at Headquarters Number 96 Wing, RAAF Base Amberley.

“My team and I are responsible for ensuring safe delivery of the air movements and aviation refuelling capability for Air Force,” Squadron Leader Bishop said.

“Within Number 96 Wing we have a workforce of approximately 330 people who are working hard to prepare cargo for load and unload operations and to refuel aircraft across the globe.

“Like our aircraft I have had the opportunity to travel extensively, with one highlight being a deployment to Antarctica in support of Operation Southern Discovery.

“I worked and lived in Antarctica as the Casey Station Logistics Officer during the 2017-18 summer.”

Squadron Leader Bishop was awarded the Conspicuous Service Cross for her logistics support to the Air Force’s Heron Remotely Piloted Aircraft Operations.

In her spare time she is a keen hiker.

“Last winter my daughter and I completed the Overland Track in Tasmania and we have also done some hiking in the Canary Islands,” Squadron Leader Bishop said.

With people a strong focus of the Air Force Centenary throughout 2020 and 2021, exceptional members who have contributed to the Air Force will be featured on and Squadron Leader Bishop is a fine example of the thousands of people who make up our Air Force.

Planning is underway for the commemoration of the Royal Australian Air Force’s formation in March 1921.For more information, go to

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