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Part 2 - The Forty-second Parliament - The Governor-General

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The Governor-General

The Governor-General is appointed by the Queen, upon the advice of the Australian Prime Minister, to be her representative in Australia, with powers as specified in the Constitution, and 'such powers and functions of the Queen as Her Majesty may be pleased to assign to him'.

The Governor-General exercises the following powers with respect to the Parliament: the appointment of times for parliamentary sessions, the prorogation or dissolution of Parliament, the appointment of the Ministry, and the declaration of Royal Assent to legislation passed by Parliament.

Her Excellency Ms Quentin Bryce, AC

Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia

BA, LLB (Qld), Hon. LLD (Macq), Hon. DLitt (Charles Sturt), Hon. DUniv (Griffith).

Hon. DU (QUT), Hon. LLD (Qld).

Quentin Bryce was born in Brisbane in 1942 and spent her early years in Central Western Queensland. In 1965, she graduated in law from the University of Queensland and was admitted to the Queensland Bar. Ms Bryce's former roles-some, among firsts for women in this country-include: Lecturer and Tutor in Law, The University of Queensland; Convenor, National Women's Advisory Council; Inaugural Director, Queensland Women's Information Service; Member of the Australian Delegation to the conferences overseeing the UN Conventions on the Elimination of Discrimination Against Women and the Rights of the Child; Director, Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, Queensland; Federal Sex Discrimination Commissioner, Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission; founding Chair and CEO, National Childcare Accreditation Council; Principal and CEO, The Women's College, University of Sydney, and Governor of Queensland.

Ms Bryce's contribution to advancing human rights and equality, the rights of women and children, and the welfare of the family was recognised in her appointment as an Officer of the Order of Australia in 1988 and a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2003.

On 5 September 2008, she was sworn in as the twenty-fifth Governor-General, also the first female Governor-General, of the Commonwealth of Australia.