Description: Air Vice Marshal Sir R Paterson - Air Officer Scotland Formail Portrait. *For more Information Contact Photographic Section, RAF Lossiemouth, IV31 6SD. Tel: 01343 817191 Crown Copyright: This image may be used for current news purposes only. It may not be used, reproduced or transmitted for any other purpose without first obtaining a copyright license available from the MoD, Crown Copyright Unit. This photograph has been digitally enhanced.

Air Vice-Marshal Paterson was commissioned in 1983 and spent his initial years in the RAF in a variety of engineering and officer training appointments across the Service, including RAF Cosford, RAF College Cranwell and RAF Marham.

Subsequently responsible for RAF ground training policy as a wing commander, he secured significant in-house training efficiencies and also created a marketing partnership for RAF training that continues to realise major benefits. He moved to RAF Leuchars as OC Administrative Wing in 1998 where he also served as a full member of its Mountain Rescue Team, involved in numerous operational callouts.  Promoted to serve in the Ministry of Defence Central Staffs undertaking HR policy duties, he moved to RAF Brampton/Wyton/Henlow as Station Commander in 2003.  There he was responsible for the support of some 6000 military and civilian personnel at 4 separate sites, including 2 active airfields, with a round trip of 150 miles between them all. He then returned to Whitehall and, following promotion to air rank, provided the Defence lead for all personnel remuneration policy, including the introduction of a new Pension Scheme across the 3 Services. 

In 2009 he was invited to join the Prime Minister’s Strategy Unit in the Cabinet Office, advising on strategic leadership, before moving to HQ Air Command as Assistant Chief of Staff Personnel Policy (RAF).  As well as specialist HR services, this post provided key RAF policy input to the 2010 Strategic Defence Review, work that has since been adopted as core defence policy. He then moved, on promotion to air vice-marshal in 2011, as Chief Executive of the Service Personnel & Veterans Agency.  This unique role, across 5 UK sites, oversaw the handling of £15Bn pa of personnel costs and compensation via a worldwide self-service HR system (the largest of its type in Europe), UK Veterans welfare, the award of 150K medals pa, and all compassionate handling for the UK forces worldwide, including all operational casualties. On retirement in 2015, he became Air Officer Scotland as a Reservist.

He was appointed as an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire in 2001 and then as a Companion of the Most Honourable Order of the Bath in 2014. He was subsequently appointed as an ADC to Her Majesty the Queen in 2016 and is also a Deputy Lieutenant for Fife.

Air Vice-Marshal Paterson is married to Helen (a civilian Doctor) and has 2 sons, both now working as junior doctors. With a family home in Fife, his interests include his small-holding, rural life, hill walking and training a working dog (not a doctor) for the first time.