Nick Kaldas APM is known for his high-profile career with the NSW Police Force. He migrated to Australia when he was 12. Nick has had many international roles requiring cultural awareness and sensitivity to diverse environments.
This is his story.
I was born in Upper (Southern) Egypt, in Asyut, and migrated to Australia when I was 12.
Like so many people new to Australia at the time, my family started our life in Marrickville, in Sydney’s Inner West.
As an Egyptian Australian and a Coptic Orthodox Christian, I found friendship within the Arab and Coptic communities in Sydney. I’ve remained involved in migrant communities my whole life.
In 1981 I joined the NSW Police Force and served for 35 years. For the last decade of my service I was the Deputy Commissioner. My career has primarily been in major and organised crime investigations and operations, including counter terrorism and community policing.
For some 15 years I led the NSW Police Force’s multicultural engagement policies and programs as the organisational spokesperson or sponsor for all related issues.
I have always been passionate about fostering strong links and engagement between police, on the one hand, and the diverse communities we serve on the other. I see myself as a bridge builder. That’s what I’m driven by and I hope to continue to contribute in my role on the Multicultural NSW Advisory Board.
I have also had many roles internationally, all of which required cultural awareness and sensitivity to diverse environments.
In 2004 I was seconded to the Federal Government and deployed to Iraq as the Deputy Chief Police Adviser with Coalition Forces, to help rebuild the Iraqi police force. In 2009-2010, I was appointed Chief of Investigations for the UN Special Tribunal for Lebanon, investigating the assassination of the Lebanese Prime Minister Rafic Hariri and 21 others.
In 2016 I led the UN/OPCW (Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons) investigation into the use of chemical weapons in Syria. I’ve also carried out an independent review of the 2019 Christchurch shooting for the NZ Police Commissioner.
I currently serve on the Board of the Commission for International Justice and Accountability and am Chair of the Royal Commission into Defence and Veterans Suicide.
My experiences have allowed me to understand the migrant experience and have a deep appreciation of the hopes, dreams, fears and aspirations of migrant communities.