Son of an Old Scholar, the late Murray Horner, David Horner attended Prince Alfred College from 1961 to 1965. Interestingly, the seeds of David Horner's future career as a military historian were clearly sown during his time at school, when he wrote a history of the PAC Cadet Unit in 1964, his first publication, when he was in Year 11.
After school, David entered the Australian regular Army, graduating from the Royal Military College, Duntroon, in Canberra, in 1969. He saw active service in Vietnam and spent 25 years in the Army before pursuing a career as an academic. As a Colonel in the Army Reserve, he was the first Head of the Australian Army's Land Warfare Studies Centre.
David has a Master’s Degree from the University of New South Wales and was awarded the Churchill Fellowship, for military history study overseas. He received the Crawford Prize for excellence for his Doctorate in History and Strategic Studies, at the Australian National University. He is the author or editor of 34 books and numerous articles on military history, strategy and defence.
His first volume of the history of the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation, ASIO, called The Spy Catchers, won the 2015 UK Intelligence Book of the Year Prize and was joint winner of the Australian Prime Minister's Prize for History. He was General Editor of the Australian Army's military history series, has written four prestigious American history publications and has been an historical consultant for television programs on military history.
Emeritus Professor David Horner, is one of Australia's leading historians and is based at the Australian National University, a leading university in this country which is also ranked highly internationally. He was Professor of Australian Defence History at the University for 15 years and is considered Australia's premier military historian, with a significant international reputation for military history and strategic analysis.
David is currently completing the six-volume official history of Australian peacekeeping, humanitarian and post-Cold War operations. He is a Member of the Order of Australia for services to higher education in the area of Australian military history and heritage, as a researcher, author and academic. He is also a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia.
David has pursued his career and interests with passion and determination taking him to the very top of his profession. David is another proud Princes Man and it is most fitting and appropriate that we recognise him with the highest distinction for our Old Collegians.