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Michael Macklin

Dr Michael Macklin
Former Queensland Democrat senators: Michael Macklin (left) and John Cherry
Senator for Queensland
In office
1 July 1981 – 30 June 1990
Personal details
Born (1943-02-25) 25 February 1943 (age 71)
London, England
Nationality English Australian
Political party Australian Democrats
Alma mater University of Queensland
Occupation Retired
Religion Roman Catholic

Michael John Macklin (born 25 February 1943 in London)[1] is an English-born former Australian Franciscan friar, educator and fundraiser who was an Australian Democrats senator for Queensland (1981–1990). He later served as executive dean of the faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of New England (2002–2007).[2]

Early life

Macklin migrated as a child with his family to Australia. He grew up in Ayr in northern Queensland and finished his schooling in Sydney. Having spent a number of years as a Franciscan friar, he commenced university studies in Brisbane, became a teacher, married Jennie in December 1970,[2] and completed Master's and PhD degrees at the University of Queensland, where he lectured in Philosophy of Education for eight years.

Political career

Macklin was the founding member of the Australian Democrats in Queensland and led the party in that state from 1977 to 1980, when he was elected to the Senate "on the back of a huge drift of Liberal preferences".[3]

He became the party’s first whip and was elected deputy leader under Janine Haines following the retirement of Don Chipp.[4] From 24 March to 30 June 1990, he served as interim parliamentary leader after the resignation of Haines from the Senate to contest a House of Representative seat.[5] He served on many parliamentary committees, including those having oversight of the National Crime Authority and ASIO (Australian Security Intelligence Organisation). He also introduced the largest number of private member's bills of any federal parliamentarian since federation.

Post-parliamentary career

Macklin contracted fundraising activities, including for the Australian Democrats. As Director of Development for the University of Queensland, he was responsible for putting fundraising on a professional basis with an annual appeal and bequest programs. He oversaw a successful capital campaign for the restoration of the Customs House, Brisbane which raised A$7.5 million in eleven months. In 1994, he was appointed inaugural CEO of Hall Chadwick Education Advisory, a specialist consultancy within a large chartered-accountancy practice and was responsible for establishing benchmarking of private school finances in Australia in conjunction with the peak body. In June 2002, he was appointed Professor and Dean of Arts at the University of New England for a five-year term ending in 2007.[2] He has been a member of the Queensland Land and Resources Tribunal, the National Native Claims Tribunal, and the Senate Bibliographical Committee; and has published numerous papers, academic articles and books, both fiction and non-fiction.


  • Michael Macklin: Senate speeches (1980–1990)
  • Michael Macklin: Occasional address to University of New England graduands, in UNE News and Events, 10 October 2006
Preceded by
Janine Haines
Leader of the Australian Democrats
Succeeded by
Janet Powell

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