Major-General Steve Gower attended the Royal Military College, Duntroon, and graduated with the Sword of Honour and the Queen’s Medal. He completed his engineering degree at the University of Adelaide and then a Master’s degree by research. Service in South Vietnam as a forward observer followed. Steve Gower left the Army in early 1996 on appointment as the Director of the Australian War Memorial.
In this role for sixteen years his tenure was marked by major developments of the buildings, exhibitions and grounds, and the reactivation of the official war art scheme. Each year he welcomed Year 7 PAC boys to the War Memorial.
Steve Gower was active in the broader community through the board of ACT Tourism, chair of the Canberra Convention Bureau and patron of ACT Cricket. He is believed to be the only Australian to have been made an Officer of the Order of Australia in both the civil and military divisions of the Order.