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ALSTON, the Hon. Richard Kenneth RobertBiography for ALSTON, the Hon. Richard Kenneth Robert

Senator for Victoria

Liberal Party of Australia



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 Occupations 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.