John Thomas

Director | Trident Advisory . Adelaide . SA


Qualifications: BA, MBA (Advanced)

John has over 40 years’ experience as an operational Police officer within the South Australian Police (SAPOL) attaining the rank of Superintendent.  He possesses a wealth of capability across a multitude of emergency response, risk management and planning capability areas, with significant strategic, operational and tactical experience.  His operational experience includes command of significant incidents, major events and sporting events state-wide.

John spent over 17 years working within the Police Tactical Group, with roles including High Risk Policing, Terrorism Response, Dignitary Protection, Search and Rescue, Public Order Policing, and as a Police Diver.

From 2011 to 2014 John was the Officer in Charge Special Tasks and Rescue (STAR) Group, South Australia’s tactical police capabilities in response to terrorism threats.  The oversight responsibilities included, but were not limited to; Police Tactical Group, Bomb Response, Negotiators and also included broader accountability for helicopter operations, public order policing, mounted policing, water police, and dog operations.

During this time, John also represented SAPOL on national counter-terrorism sub-committees providing advice on capability readiness, training requirements and capability standards.  He contributed to the development of the national Counter Terrorism operational response capability management plans, as well as an ongoing role in validating response practice through national exercise management, and within the training environment.

John also brings to the fore, significant training capability, having held the role of Officer in Charge, Human Resource Development Branch at the South Australian Police Academy, where he was responsible for recruit training, promotional development, detective and intelligence training, and senior officer development.  His organisation-wide training responsibilities included operational safety, firearms training, driver and traffic training, and information and computer training.

John also held policy development positions with particular responsibility towards the development of Critical Infrastructure management, Police Counter Terrorism Command arrangements, High Risk Policing Response, and Public Order Management.

As a longstanding SAPOL representative to the national Command Capability, within the Australia New Zealand Counter Terrorism Committee (ANZCTC) his role included responsibility for development and delivery of Command training at both national and state level, with specific focus on the development of senior officers to undertake the roles of Police Commanders during a terrorism incident.

John holds several Tertiary qualifications and was regarded as one of South Australia’s most experienced Police Officers.  His experience and operational capabilities belie a warm sense of humour and steadfast professionalism.

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