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Biography for COHEN, the Hon. Barry

Member for Robertson (NSW) 1969-90

Australian Labor Party

Parliamentary Service

Elected to the House of Representatives for Robertson, New South Wales, 1969, 1972, 1974, 1975, 1977, 1980, 1983, 1984 and 1987.

Retired prior to general elections 1990.

Ministerial Appointments

Minister for Home Affairs and Environment from 11.3.83 to 13.12.84.

Minister for Arts, Heritage and Environment from 13.12.84 to 24.7.87.

Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for the Bicentennial from 13.12.84 to 24.7.87.

Committee Service

House of Representatives Standing: House from 18.7.74 to 11.11.75; Road Safety (formerly Select Committee) from 11.5.72 (Chairman from 2.5.73 to 11.11.75) to 4.10.77; Environment and Conservation from 14.3.78 to 19.9.80.

House of Representatives Select: Tourism from 8.12.76 to 26.10.78.

Joint Standing: Foreign Affairs from 16.4.70 to 2.11.72.

Member, Mr Speaker's Committee on Parliament House Accommodation.

Conferences, Delegations and Visits

Councillor, Spring Meeting IPU, Abidjan, April 1973; Member, 63rd IPU Conference, Madrid, September-October 1976; Councillor, Spring Meeting, Manila, April 1981; Member, 68th IPU Conference, Havana, September 1981.

Member, Parliamentary Delegation to Africa, July-August 1982.

Member, 3rd World Wilderness Congress, Scotland, September-October 1983.

Official visits to USA and UK, September-October 1983; China, Japan and Hong Kong, April 1984; New Zealand, July-August 1985; Israel, Europe and Thailand, May-June 1986; USA and South America, January-February 1987.

Leader, Fact Finding Visit to Canada, November 1989.

Parliamentary Party Positions

Member, Opposition Shadow Ministry from 29.12.77 to 7.11.80. Spokesman on Environment, Sport and Recreation, Tourism and Home Affairs from 29.12.77 to 7.11.80.


Born 3.4.35 at Griffith, NSW.

Qualifications and Occupation before entering Federal Parliament



Executive Member of the Federal Council for Advancement of Aborigines and Torres Strait Islanders 1969.

Military Service

Enlisted in CMF 1953.

National Service Trainee with 12th Battalion 1954.

Served in the CMF with the Scottish Regiment until 1957.


Description: Semi-rural, residential suburban.

Location: North of Sydney; following the 1984 Federal redistribution includes the centres of Empire Bay, Ettalong, Gosford, Kariong, Kincumber, Mangrove, Terrigal and Woy Woy, and parts of Wyoming.

Area: 762 sq km (approx.).

Electors enrolled: 70 823 (at 11.7.87).

Industries: Citrus growing, dairying, mining and tourism.

State electorates: Robertson includes the New South Wales Legislative Assembly electorate of Peats, and parts of Gosford.