Anna Bligh

Anna Bligh

Infobox Premier | name =Hon. Anna Bligh

caption =Anna Bligh at Labour Day 2007
order =37th Premier of Queensland
term_start =13 September 2007
term_end =
deputy =Paul Lucas
predecessor =Peter Beattie
successor =
birth_date =birth date and age|1960|7|14|df=y
birth_place =Warwick, Queensland
death_date =
death_place =
constituency =South Brisbane
party =Australian Labor Party
nationality =Australian
spouse =Greg Withers
religion =

footnotes =|

Anna Maria Bligh (born 14 July 1960) is an Australian politician and the current Premier of Queensland. She has been an Australian Labor Party member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly since 1995, representing the electorate of South Brisbane.

She is Queensland's first and Australia's third female State premier, and the sixth female head of government of any Australian State or Territory. She is currently the only female State premier in Australia.


Bligh is married to Greg Withers, a senior public servant, with whom she has two sons. [cite web|url=|title=Premier Anna Bligh - Biography|date=2008-08-26|publisher=Queensland Government|accessdate=2008-09-08]

In November 2006 the "Gold Coast Bulletin" used genealogical websites to establish that Anna Bligh is the great-great-great-great-granddaughter of William Bligh, who was the fourth Governor of the colony of New South Wales (which at the time included the area that was to become Queensland). William Bligh is best known internationally as the captain of the Bounty when it was overthrown by mutineers in 1789. When presented with the "Bulletin"'s evidence, she said that she was "pleasantly surprised". Additionally the investigation revealed that her great-great-great-grandfather, Richard Bligh, was a barrister who served in the House of Lords.cite news
first = Murray
last = Hubbard
title = Bligh's spirit Anna's bounty - Deputy Premier revealed to be the captain's direct descendant
publisher = Gold Coast Bulletin
page = 12
date = 2006-11-11

Before Parliament

Bligh grew up on the Gold Coast. Her parents separated when she was 13 after her father Bill took to drink and gambling. She attended Catholic schools until Year 9 and strongly considered becoming a nun. One of her aunts became a nun and another had entered a convent. However the church's attitude to divorces (for example, her mother was no longer permitted to take Communion) estranged her and her mother from the church.cite news|title=out of left field|date=2006-06-03|publisher=QWeekend Magazine|author=Jamie Walker|page=13]

Studying at the University of Queensland from 1978, Bligh gained a Bachelor of Arts in social sciences. Bligh traces her politicisation to her first year at University, observing a right-to-march rally in King George Square where people were being hit over the head by the police. Bligh's first involvement in activism was student protests against the Vice-Chancellor Brian Wilson's controversial administrative restructuring within the university. She then went on to be involved in the Women's Rights Collective which campaigned against the pro-life policies of the Bjelke-Petersen government. She also protested for respect for women and against "Playboy" magazine. Bligh's next role was as Women's Vice-President of the Student Union. She then ran an election ticket called EAT (Education Action Team) in an unsuccessful bid to oust the faction in charge, headed by the future Goss government identity David Barbagallo. Law student Paul Lucas, Bligh's future Deputy Premier, was a part of Barbagallo's team. Her 1982 team included the current Minister for Education and the Arts Rod Welford. Anne Warner, who was a future Minister in the Goss Government, was an office holder at the time in the Union. Warner soon become one of Bligh's key political mentors.

She subsequently worked in a number of community organisations, including child care services, neighbourhood centres, women's refuges and trade unions as well as in the Queensland Public Service as a Senior Policy Officer for the Department of Employment, Vocational Education, Training and Industrial Relations.

Bligh was the secretary of the Labor Party's Fairfield branch in 1987.

Early parliamentary career (1995-2005)

Anna Bligh was first elected to parliament at the 1995 election to the safe Labor seat of South Brisbane. She was promoted to the ministry following the election of the Beattie government in 1998 as Minister for Families, Youth and Community Care and Disability Services. In 2001, Bligh became Queensland's first female Education Minister. She assumed additional responsibility for the Arts portfolio in 2004.

Deputy Premier (2005-2007)

In July 2005, the retirement of the Deputy Premier and Treasurer Terry Mackenroth and the resignation of the Speaker Ray Hollis forced a cabinet reshuffle, which saw Bligh promoted to the office of Deputy Premier and Minister for Finance, State Development, Trade and Innovation. Bligh's appointment as Deputy Premier coincided with her election to parliament ten years earlier. In early February 2006, Bligh also gained the Treasury portfolio after Beattie relinquished the responsibility in order to focus on fixing the state's troubled health system.


Bligh had long been touted as a likely successor to the long-running Premier Peter Beattie, and he publicly endorsed her as his replacement when he announced his imminent retirement from politics on 10 September 2007. She was subsequently nominated unopposed by the Labor caucus, in a deal that saw Paul Lucas from the Right faction succeed her as Deputy Premier. She became the leader of the Labor Party on 12 September. After Beattie formally resigned on Thursday 13 September 2007, Bligh was sworn in by the Governor Quentin Bryce.


External links

* [ Official Website]
* [ Premier's Biography]
* [ Parliamentary Biography]

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  • Anna Bligh — (* 14. Juli 1960 in Warwick, Queensland) ist eine australische Politikerin und seit dem 13. September 2007 die 37. Premierministerin von Queensland. Sie ist die erste Frau auf diesem Posten und gehört der Labor Party an …   Deutsch Wikipedia

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  • Bligh — may refer to:* William Bligh, a Vice Admiral in the British Royal Navy famous for being Captain of HMS Bounty during a mutiny and Governor of New South Wales during the first military coup in Australia ** HMS Bligh (K 467) a Buckley class… …   Wikipedia

  • Bligh — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Anna Bligh (* 1960), australische Politikerin und seit 2007 Premierministerin von Queensland William Bligh (1754–1817), britischer Seeoffizier und Gouverneur von New South Wales in Australien Diese Seite… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Bligh — /blaɪ/ (say bluy) noun 1. Anna Maria, born 1960, Australian state Labor politician; premier of Qld 2007–12. 2. William, 1754–1817, English born naval officer and governor of NSW, 1806–08; captain of HMS Bounty in 1787. William Bligh entered the… …   Australian English dictionary

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