David Irvine, a spy boss and 'giant of the public service' who steered many PMs, dies at age 75

Sarah Basford Canales
Harley Dennett
By Sarah Basford Canales, and Harley Dennett
Updated March 31 2022 - 8:02am, first published 2:05am
David Irvine has passed away after an exceptional public service career Canberra's security world learned on Thursday. Picture: David Ellery.

David Irvine, one of Australia's most senior diplomats and former head of ASIO and ASIS, has passed away at the age of 75.

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Sarah Basford Canales

Sarah Basford Canales

Canberra Times journalist

I'm a federal politics and public sector reporter with an interest in national security, integrity and regulation. Contact me with general tips and thoughts at sarah.basfordcanales@canberratimes.com.au or confidential tips to sbasfordcanales@protonmail.com.

Harley Dennett

Harley Dennett

Senior Political Reporter

I'm the federal politics bureau chief for the Canberra Times, via a career that's taken me from rural Victoria to Washington DC. Telling the stories of my local LGBTI community brought me to journalism, where I've covered seven federal budgets, four national elections, Defence, public service and international governance.