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Former Senator Richard Alston

Former Senator Richard Alston

Former Senator

Party
Liberal Party of Australia
Chamber
Senate

Biography

Parliamentary service
  • Chosen by the Parliament of Victoria on 7.5.1986 under section 15 of the Constitution to represent that State in the Senate, vice A Missen (deceased). Elected to the Senate for Victoria, 1987. Re-elected 1990 and 1996 and 2001. Resigned 10.2.2004.
Ministerial appointments
  • Minister for Communications and the Arts from 11.3.1996 to 9.10.1997.
  • Cabinet Minister from 11.3.1996 to 7.10.2003.
  • Minister for Communications, the Information Economy and the Arts from 9.10.1997 to 21.10.1998.
  • Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts from 21.10.1998 to 7.10.2003.
Committee service
  • Senate Select: Superannuation from 20.6.1991 to 30.6.1993; Subscription Television Broadcasting Services from 26.6.1992 to 16.9.1992; Functions, Powers and Operation of the Australian Loan Council from 5.11.1992 to 18.8.1993; Matters Arising from Pay Television Tendering Processes from 27.5.1993 to 16.12.1993; Certain Aspects of Foreign Ownership Decisions in relation to the Print Media from 14.12.1993 to 30.3.1995 (Chair from 15.12.1993 to 30.3.1995); Australian Broadcasting Corporation Management and Operations from 22.9.1994 to 30.3.1995 (Chair from 13.10.1994 to 30.3.1995).
  • Senate Legislative and General Purpose Standing: Legal and Constitutional Affairs from 3.6.1986 to 5.6.1987; Legal and Constitutional Affairs from 24.9.1987 to 24.8.1990; Finance and Public Administration from 24.9.1987 to 17.9.1990.
  • Senate Estimates: A from 21.8.1986 to 6.9.1989; C from 21.2.1991 to 20.8.1992.
  • Joint Statutory: Law Enforcement (formerly National Crime Authority from 15.6.1984 to 1.1.2003 and Australian Crime Commission from 1.1.2003 to 24.11.2010) from 9.10.1987 to 19.2.1990; Broadcasting of Parliamentary Proceedings (formerly Broadcasting) from 27.10.1989 to 19.2.1990.
  • Joint Select: Corporations Legislation from 20.10.1988 to 13.4.1989.
Conferences, delegations and visits
  • Member, Parliamentary Delegation to India and Sri Lanka, November 1986.
  • Member, 77th IPU Conference, Managua, Nicaragua, April-May 1987.
  • Official visits to New Zealand, June-July 1996.
  • Official visits to USA and Canada, July-August 1996.
  • Official visits to India, October-November 1996.
  • Official visits to UK and USA, January 1997.
  • Official visits to Japan, USA, UK, Ireland and Malaysia, July-August 1997.
  • Official visits to Indonesia and Republic of Korea, November-December 1997.
  • Official visits to USA, February 1998.
  • Official visits to Singapore and Malaysia, May-June 1998.
  • Official visits to South Africa, UK, Switzerland and Italy, January-February 1999.
  • Official visits to Hong Kong, March 1999.
  • Official visits to USA, May-June 1999.
  • Official visits to South Africa, June 1999.
  • Official visits to Israel, Russia, Finland, Sweden and Germany, July 1999.
  • Official visits to USA and UK, November 1999.
  • Official visits to Argentina, Uruguay, Chile, Brazil and Mexico, May 2000.
  • Official visits to Israel and UK, November 2000.
  • Official visits to India and China, December 2000.
  • Official visits to United Arab Emirates, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Egypt, April-May 2001.
  • Official visits to USA and Canada, January 2002.
  • Official visits to Republic of Korea, China and Japan, May-June 2002.
  • Official visits to UK, France, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland and USA, September-October 2002.
  • Official visits to Belgium, Germany and Hungary, March 2003.
Parliamentary party positions
  • Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate from 11.3.1996 to 7.10.2003.
  • Shadow Minister for Communications from 12.5.1989 to 11.4.1990.
  • Shadow Minister for Social Security, Child Care and Retirement Incomes from 11.4.1990 to 28.4.1992.
  • Shadow Minister Assisting the Leader of the Opposition on Social Policy from 11.4.1990 to 28.4.1992.
  • Shadow Minister for Social Security, Child Care and Superannuation from 28.4.1992 to 23.5.1992.
  • Shadow Minister for Superannuation and Child Care from 23.5.1992 to 7.4.1993.
  • Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate from 23.3.1993 to 11.3.1996.
  • Shadow Minister for Communications from 7.4.1993 to 26.5.1994.
  • Shadow Minister for Communications and the Arts from 26.5.1994 to 11.3.1996.
Party positions
  • Member of the Liberal Speakers Group from 1972.
  • Chair of the Liberal Party Constitutional Committee from 1977 to 1979.
  • Member of the Liberal Party State Executive (Vic.) from 1977 to 1980.
  • President of the Liberal Party (Vic.) from 1979 to 1982.
  • Member of the Liberal Party Federal Executive from 1979 to 1982.
  • Chair of the Liberal Party State Finance Committee from 1979 to 1982.
  • Member of the Liberal Party Administrative Committee from 1980 to 1985.
  • Member of the Liberal Party Policy Assembly from 1982.
  • Chair of the Liberal Party Constitutional Committee from 1982 to 1987.
Personal
  • Born 19.12.1941, Perth, Australia
  • Married
Qualifications and occupation before entering Federal Parliament
  • BCom (University of Melbourne).
  • MBA (Monash University).
  • LLB (University of Melbourne).
  • BA (University of Melbourne).
  • LLM (Monash University).
  • Barrister.
  • President, United Nations Association of Australia from 1977 to 1979.
  • Chair, Australian Council for Overseas Aid from 1978 to 1983.
  • National Chair, International Disaster Emergencies Committee from 1978 to 1980.
  • Executive Committee Member of the International Council of Voluntary Agencies from 1983 to 1984.
  • Chair and Director of the Australian Institute of Political Science (Vic.) from 1983 to 1988.
  • Chair of the Afghan-Australia Council from 1987 to 1990.
Publications
  • More to life then politics?, Connor Court Publishing, Redland Bay, Qld, 2020.
  • Australia, the United States and China in a post-Covid world, The Centre for Independent Studies, Sydney, 2020.