Director Corporate Staff Services



Brigadier General M.M. Visser


Rank:                                                   Brigadier General

Full Names:                                         Martha Magaritha Visser

Current Position/Post:                          Director Corporate Staff Services

Gender:                                                Female

Race:                                                    White

Nationality:                                           South African

Marital Status:                                      Married

Languages:                                          English & Afrikaans

Drivers License:                                   Codes 02 and 08

Sport:                                                   Squash, Badminton, Softball & Gym

Hobbiesl and lnterests:                        Hiking (Backpacking)

Tropical Fish

Bird Watching


Outdoor Life


Academic Qualifications
BA Political Science                                                                    Political Science & Communication (UNISA)
Professional Certificate in Government Communication & Marketing      Honors-level (Wits Business School & GCIS)
Executive National Security Programme (ENSP)                                Honors-level (SA NationalDefence College)
Public Relations Practice                                                              Public Relations Institute of South Africa (PRISA)
Public Relations Management                                                        Public Relations Institute of South Africa (PRISA)
Military Management Certificate                                                    UNISA

Short Co

Strategic Planning & Change Management

Exhibitions - A Public Relations Tool

Culture, Consciousness & Reality

Strategic Communication Management

Dynamic Communication

Business Writing Skills

Crisis Communication

European Foundation Quality Management (EFQM)

Government Communication and Corporate Communication Strategy

Full Range Leadership Programme (LCAMPS)

Creativity Seminar (Dr Kobus Neethling)

"Face the Media" Workshop

Women in Management

Strategic Internal Communication

Reputation Risk Management (Mr Deon Binneman)

Northern-Sotho (Level 1)

Thinking Skills Seminar (Dr Richard Broome)


Current Employer                                               Department of Defence (DoD)
                                                            From 21 Jan 74 to date
                                                            (38 years continuous military service)

Previous Employment                                        None (scholar)

Current Appointment                                         Director Corporate Staff Services
Air Force Office
SA Air Force Headquarters

Past Four Appointments                                    Director Transformation Management
                                                           Air Force Office SA Air Force Headquarters
                                                           Director Defence Corporate
                                                           Communication (Defence Headquarters)

                                                           Deputy Director (Senior Staff Officer)
                                                           Strategy, Policy & Planning
                                                           Defence Corporate Communication

                                                           Division (Defence Headquarters)
                                                           Deputy Director (Senior Staff Officer)
                                                           Corporate Communication, SA Air Force Headquarters


South African Air Force Association - member of Pretoria Branch.

National Press Club (Pretoria) - member.


DoD communication policies and strategies - alignment and integration with Government communication policies - including attendance of the Government

Communicators' Forums and Cluster meetings.

Communication planning and strategy - co-ordinate and compile 000 communication strategies in alignment with DOD  Corporate Strategy (Defence Strategy) and plans.

Co-ordination and implementation of communication policies and strategies in consultation with various Services and Divisions in DoD.

Working knowledge of National Treasury and Public Finance Management Act(PFMA).

Co-ordinate communication inputs in compliance with DoD strategic framework e.g. inputs for annual 000 Environmental Analysis, Budget and Planning Guidelines, DoD Strategic Business Plan and 000 Annual Report.

Budget planning for communication division, aligned with corporate business plans and strategies.

Representing Director and / or Head of Communication at senior DoD planning forums - have a good understanding of strategic planning at departmental level.

Training and Development of all corporate communication functionaries in DoD pertaining to unique skill, e.g. communication support for peace support operations and workshops on government communication and marketing.

Media relations and media liaison at all levels in the department.

Events management and all related functions such as high profile visits, sponsorships, protocol, exhibitions, catering and compilation of guest lists.

Foreign Relations - liaison with foreign military attaches re exchange programmes in training, visit by defence chiefs and co-operation in other military fields, e.g. military foreign policy, military protocol, accompanying officer for high profile visits.

Shows & Exhibitions - five years' experience in planning and co-ordination of prestige functions including those for Minister of Defence, Secretary for Defence and Chief of SA National Defence Force) - national and international level. Exposed to national and global trends in corporate promotions and marketing, branding and related compilation of audio-visual productions (promotional videos).

Internal Communication - experience in strategic planning on "employee communication". This includes compilation of information bulletins, speeches, coordination of inputs for annual reports and articles for publications such as SA Soldier.

Working knowledge of website management and web content management and layout and design of communication products such as the DoD Annual Report.

National/Departmental Communication Task TeamslWork Groups:

o Africa Aerospace & Defence (MD) Marketing and Promotions Committee served on MD forums (between 2000 and 2012)- gained valuable experience in co-ordinating press and promotions issues, which included planning and co-ordination between Ministry of Defence and Military Veterans, Defence Headquarters, SA Air Force, Defence Industry, foreign visitors and Civil Aviation Authority of South Africa (CAASA).

o Ten Years of Freedom Celebrations Task Team - representing Department of Defence on the Presidential Communication Task Team for co-ordination of Ten Years of Freedom Celebrations in 2004. (Subsequently compiled an implementation strategy and plan for the DoD and a progress report at the end of this campaign).


Semi-official visit to the Republic of China (Taiwan) as guest of Taiwanese Air Force during Oct 89.

Privileged to have met President Nelson Mandela in person during 1995 Freedom Day celebrations in Polokwane.

Member of SA National Defence Force delegation participating in LIMA 97 Defence Exhibition in Malaysia, with the purpose of promoting military training facilities in South Africa - Nov 97.

Appointment as Aide de Camp (PA) for President Thabo Mbeki during SANDF Parade and National Freedom Day celebrations in Bloemfontein - 27 April 2000.

Runner-up for annual Communicator of the Year Award (BUA Category), for contribution to government communication during Ten Years of Democracy campaign and celebrations. Minister in the President's Office, Mr Essop Pahad, presented the award - 03 December 2004.

Represented the 000 at the International Military Film Festival in Italy - 2004.

Nominated "Top Student" on completion of Government Communication & Marketing Course. The award included a study tour to London with an official itinerary that included, amongst others, a visit to Scotland Yard, Unilever Head Office and Reuters News Studios - 2005.

Study tour to Kenya and Tanzania as a member of the Executive National Security Programme (ENSP) - November 2006.

Privileged to have met President Jacob Zuma in person during the 2011 Women's Day Parade at Thaba Tshwane Sports Club.


Career and goal orientated, also attempting to strike a good balance between organisational needs and the needs of employees.

I believe that strong leadership and good teamwork is key to the successful completion of any task.

Monitoring international trends (including matters influencing the military, e.g. the Geneva Convention, Code of Conduct etc).

Human/interpersonal relations skills and experience in conflict management.

Ability to maintain a sound balance between people- and task orientation (balance between interests of the employee and the attainment of organisational goals and objectives).

Utilizes every possible opportunity to improve communication and people skills.

Has a keen interest in the history of countries and cultures.

Actively strives to empower junior colleagues through training and skills development.

An all-encompassing goal in my career has been to add value to all set objectives in my work environment, furthering the image and reputation of the SA Air Force, the SA National Defence Force and the broader 000, always striving to promote my organisation's support to Government imperatives in improving the lives of all South Africans.



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