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MASON, the Hon. Brett JohnBiography for MASON, the Hon. Brett John

Senator for Queensland 1998-2015

Liberal Party

Parliamentary Service

Elected to the Senate for Queensland 1998 (term began 1.7.1999), 2004 and 2010. Resigned 15.4.2015.

Ministerial Appointments

Parliamentary Secretary for Health and Ageing from 21.3.07 to 3.12.07.

Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Foreign Affairs from 18.9.13 to 23.12.14.

Committee Service

Senate Standing: Regulations and Ordinances from 1.7.99 to 23.3.07; Scrutiny of Bills from 31.8.99 to 23.3.07; Publications from 13.2.08 to 11.11.13.

Senate Legislative and General Purpose Standing: Community Affairs: Legislation Committee from 1.7.99 to 8.6.00; Legal and Constitutional: Legislation Committee from 1.7.99 to 11.9.06; Finance and Public Administration: Legislation Committee from 17.2.00 (Chair from 17.2.00 to 11.9.06) to 11.9.06; Finance and Public Administration from 11.9.06 to 23.10.06 and from 22.12.06 to 23.3.07; Education and Employment: Legislation Committee from 3.3.15 to 15.4.15.

Senate Select: A Certain Maritime Incident from 11.3.02 to 23.10.02.

Joint Statutory: Native Title and the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Land Fund from 8.2.01 to 1.7.02; Corporations and Financial Services from 15.10.08 to 19.7.10; Australian Crime Commission from 25.10.10 to 25.11.10; Law Enforcement from 25.11.10 to 16.3.12.

Joint Standing: Electoral Matters from 1.7.99 to 26.2.07; Treaties from 1.7.99 to 23.3.07.

Conferences, Delegations and Visits

Member, Parliamentary Delegation to Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia, November 2003.

Parliamentary Adviser, United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), New York, September-December 2006.

Parliamentary Party Positions

Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Education from 6.12.07 to 8.12.09; Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Education and School Curriculum Standards from 8.12.09 to 14.9.10; Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research from 8.12.09 to 14.9.10.

Member, Opposition Shadow Ministry from 14.9.10 to 18.9.13. Shadow Minister for Universities and Research from 14.9.10 to 18.9.13.

Party Positions

Member, Liberal Party State Executive (Qld) 1995-98.

Chair, Brisbane Federal Electorate Council 1995-97.

Vice-Chair, State Standing Committee on Policy (Qld) 1997-98.


Born 5.3.1962, Canberra, ACT.

Qualifications and Occupation before entering Federal Parliament

BA, LLB(Hons) (ANU), MPhil (Cantab), PhD (Griffith).


Lecturer in Criminology, Queensland University of Technology.


Humanitarian Overseas Service Medal 2003.


Privacy without principle: the use and abuse of privacy in Australian law and public policy, Melbourne: Australian Scholarly Publishing, 2006.

Future proofing Australia: the right answers for our future (ed. with D Wood), Melbourne University Press, 2013.