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Who is Annastacia Palaszczuk the person

  1. Dave R

    39,057 Posts.
    Queensland election 2015: Who is new Labor premier Annastacia Palaszczuk?

    By Leonie Mellor and Elaine Ford
    Updated about 3 hours agoFri 13 Feb 2015, 5:29pm
    Photo: Queensland Labor leader Annastacia Palaszczuk on the election night in Brisbane on January 31. (ABC )

    Map: Brisbane 4000
    Annastacia Palaszczuk has been dubbed the "accidental Premier", but those closest to her say there was nothing accidental about the way she brought down Campbell Newman.
    All seats in the Queensland election were declared on Friday afternoon, with Labor securing enough to form a minority government.
    The Electoral Commission of Queensland declared the 89 seats that make up Queensland Parliament at 2:15pm (AEST).
    Labor won 44 electorates and will have the crucial 45 to form a minority government with the support of independent Peter Wellington.
    Late on Friday afternoon Ms Palaszczuk accepted the Queensland Governor's invitation to form government.
    She will be sworn in on Saturday as the state's 39th Premier.
    Ms Palaszczuk was born in 1969 to long-time Labor government minister and MP Henry Palaszczuk, whom she succeeded in the seat of Inala in 2006, and his wife Lorelle.
    To her family she is known as Stacia and to Stacia, her family is everything.
    [Annastacia] was very interested in politics and aspired to be the first [female] prime minister of Australia.
    Principal Judy Finan, St Mary's College

    Grandmother Beryl Erskine said the whole family was proud of her.
    Photo: Annastacia Palaszczuk was born in 1969 and grew up in the Brisbane south-west suburb of Durack. (ABC TV News)

    "Very proud of my granddaughter - she was my little girl for a long time," she said.
    "Her best quality [is] her brains, she's got a brain. The whole family is proud of Stacia ... she's good, she's been an achiever all the way through."
    Ms Palaszczuk is the oldest of four daughters and grew up in Durack in Brisbane's south-west.
    She went to nearby Serviceton South State School, then Jamboree Heights State School, where she was school captain in year seven.
    High school was at St Mary's College in Ipswich - an hour-and-a-half journey each way by bus, train, then finally footing up a steep hill.
    She's a real trier and under pressure she will not relent and I think that's what Queenslanders want. She cares for people and she's very compassionate.
    Father and former Labor MP, Henry Palaszczuk

    There she was a prefect and excelled at sport and debating until she finished school in 1986. Her spare time was filled with netball and ballet.
    Acting St Mary's College principal Judy Finan said Ms Palaszczuk was a "hardworking student - diligent, conscientious, really liked school".
    "She's one of those all-rounders who excelled at everything," Ms Finan said.
    "Ironically now, she was very interested in politics and aspired to be the first [female] prime minister of Australia.
    "What she's shown by her success is there's endless possibilities out there if only you can go and grasp your skills and talents and make the most of them."
    Family history of political service

    Politics runs deep in Ms Palaszczuk's blood. Her father was born in Germany to Polish parents who made Australia home after World War II.
    Who is Annastacia Palaszczuk?

    • Born in 1969
    • Grew up in the south-west Brisbane suburb of Durack
    • Eldest of four girls
    • Went to primary school at Jamboree Heights State school where she was school captain
    • Went to high school at St Mary's College in Ipswich
    • Her mother Lorelle was a pharmacy assistant before having her children
    • Her father, Henry Palaszczuk, was a school teacher before entering Queensland Parliament
    • As a child, Ms Palaszczuk did classical ballet and still takes her niece, Annie to the same ballet school at Oxley on Brisbane's south-west
    • Thought about becoming a drama teacher, but ended up with Arts and Law degrees from the University of Queensland
    • Won a scholarship and studied politics and economics at the University of London
    • Confesses to liking Abba and Neil Diamond.

    He was a former Labor minister and the former MP for Inala, and there was no-one prouder than he on the election night on January 31.
    "Proud isn't the word for it - I'm just so happy for Annastacia and I'm just so happy for Queensland," Mr Palaszczuk said.
    "She's a real trier and under pressure she will not relent and I think that's what Queenslanders want.
    "She cares for people and she's very compassionate."
    Former parliamentary speaker John Mickel has known the Palaszczuk family since 1978, where he was a teacher with Mr Palaszczuk.
    Mr Mickel remembers Ms Palaszczuk as a serious child, but one attuned to the political process.
    He said her large extended family would keep her honest and give her straight advice.
    "What you see if what you get - she is quite unaffected, hasn't been doctored to speak in a particular way," he said.
    Mr Mickel marvelled at how she went from a tiny opposition to government.
    "Everybody said 'look, you're no chance, thanks for showing up [for the election]' and she's not only shown up, she's shown them up," he said.
    "The triumph over absolute adversity - I mean we all know what the joke was - what's the difference between the Labor party and a combie van - a combie van has more seats."
    Palaszczuk's working life led to political path

    Ms Palaszczuk studied arts and law at the University of Queensland before gaining a scholarship to study politics and economics at the London School of Economics.
    Photo: Student Annastacia Palaszczuk giving a speech at the University of Queensland where she did arts and law degrees. (ABC TV News)

    She worked as a policy adviser to several former Labor ministers including Warren Pitt, who is father of likely Labor treasurer Curtis Pitt.
    "Within a short period of time was made a senior policy adviser mainly due to the fact that she showed that she was quite intelligent and she showed also that she had a great work ethic," Warren Pitt said.
    "She also had great empathy and compassion for the client base I had at the time, which was disability services."
    He said Ms Palaszczuk was heavily involved in the political field but showed no immediate inclination to go into Parliament and that it was something that developed as time went on.
    "She's a person who has been engaged in the law ... politics is something that creeps up on people," he said.
    "I'm sure Annastacia when she got involved in the policy side of things believed she, as an individual, could make a difference."
    Ms Palaszczuk married journalist George Megalogenis in 1996, and after they divorced she later married Labor staffer Simon Every.
    She wanted to become a mother, and her miscarriage and infertility have been well documented.
    Her nieces and nephews now take centre stage and she taught them to swim and takes her niece to ballet.
    Served in Bligh government as minister

    Ms Palaszczuk became a solicitor but her father's retirement reopened the door to politics and saw her elected as the Member for Inala in 2006.
    She was a transport minister in the Bligh government but after the 2012 election annihilation where the LNP's Campbell Newman swept to unprecedented power, all eyes fell on her, as she set about making amend for asset sales, a key reason for Labor losing government.
    "There was a fundamental breach between our government and talking to the community and explaining to the community our decision and why we went about it, and for that today, I apologise," she said at the time.
    Ms Palaszczuk had just six other Labor MPs with her in Opposition.
    "I'm under no illusion of the task ahead - it's going to be an uphill battle, it's going to be like climbing Mount Everest," she said after the 2012 defeat.
    "[We] will fight every inch of the way to restore the faith of Queenslanders - I represent a large working class electorate and I know we need to connect back to people."
    Return to accountability in Queensland, Anna Bligh says

    Seasoned political heads were talking a decade in Opposition and no-one expected her to take power in just three years.
    Former Queensland premier Anna Bligh was defeated in the 2012 state election against Mr Newman.
    Ms Bligh said earlier this week there would now be a return to accountability in Queensland with Labor's win.
    "What Annastacia Palaszczuk will bring back to Queensland is a sense of accountability, transparency, she'll be a great listener and a very good performer," Ms Bligh said.
    "I think we've seen a Government with a big majority is not necessarily good government.
    "Queensland voted against it and I know that Annastacia's heard that message loud and clear."
    Ms Palaszczuk still has to prove herself as Premier but her supporters believe she can do it.
    I'm impressed. Lets see how she goes.
    Dave R.

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