Defence Reserves Association (DRA)

The Defence Reserves Association (DRA) is a tri-service organisation supporting the Australian Defence Force (ADF), promoting the interests, and safeguarding the concerns of the Defence Reserve component of the ADF

The Origin of Our Name

The Defence Reserves Association was founded in 1969 as the Citizen Military Forces Association by Major General Paul Cullen AC CBE DSO ED following his period as CMF Member of the Military Board. The name was changed in 1987 to the Army Reserve Association. When the association became Tri-Service in 1992, the name was changed to its current form of: Defence Reserves Association (DRA)


The Defence Reserves Association operates under the set of rules defined in our constitution. The constitution was amended in August 2009 to reflect decisions made at the 2008 and 2009 Annual General Meetings. A copy of the constitution is available for download here.

The Aims of the DRA Association are:

  • to foster and assist the Australian Defence Force with particular emphasis on the Reserves.
  • to make and receive gifts and donations.
  • to publicise the Defence Reserves by public relations facilities and activities.
  • to be involved actively in the welfare and betterment of serving and former Defence Force members with specific attention to those of the Defence Reserves.
  • to encourage loyalty to the Commonwealth of Australia and observance of its laws and statutes.
  • to consider and where appropriate seek changes to the conditions of service, amenities and equipments relating to Defence Reserves.
  • to aid recruiting for the Defence Reserves and assist in the promotion of their units and squadrons.
  • to represent the standpoint of the Defence Reserves in the promotion of an effective tri-service Defence Force.

What is the DRA structure?

DRA branches are established in each state. The federal executive co-ordinates national policy and carries out liaison on defence matters directly with both Government and Opposition members of Parliament and members of the Senior Defence executive.

How does the DRA operate at National level?

Meetings are held frequently with senior uniformed and civilian officers within the Department of Defence to discuss a wide range of issues particularly those affecting Reserves. Meetings on policy matters are often held between State committees and federal parliamentarians to present the DRA perspective on defence planning intentions and to discuss likely implications for Defence Reservists.