ALP activist Barbara Cross was active in the Labor Women's Central Organising Committee, represented Ryan electorate on the Queensland Central Executive (QCE), and stood unsuccessfully for the Brisbane City Council in 1967. Together with her husband Manfred Cross, they were some of the first to seek reform in the ALP during the 1970s, especially pushing for a stronger role for branch members and women. Manfred Cross, who was interviewed previously in December 2010, tracked his party and parliamentary activities through to the fall of the Whitlam federal government in 1975. This interview takes up the account from that time, and includes Barbara's insights into party activities and the conflicts she perceived which led to her and Manfred's advocacy in favour of federal intervention by the ALP National Executive. 

Barbara Cross

The Queensland Speaks Symposium, held on 3 November 2011 at the University of Queensland, gathered together about 30 thinkers and practitioners involved in Queensland’s political history.

Part 3 Women in Government

In this session the role of women in government is discussed from a number of perspectives. Lesley Clark, former member for Barron River and academic, discusses the importance of affirmative action in encouraging more women members of parliament. Robin Sullivan discusses her role in the public service from school principal in Tully to Director General. Leigh Tabrett discusses her roles in the public service and some of her experiences. The session concludes with Joan Sheldon sharing some of her experiences and general discussion on the role of mentoring.

Note that due to the symposium format, on occasion part of a question or comment from the audience may be temporarily inaudible and that the audio has been recorded through a single microphone.

Lesley Clark, Robin Sullivan & Leigh Tabrett
Liberal Party politician Joan Sheldon was leader of the Liberal Party in Queensland from 1991-98. In the Borbidge Government 1996-98 she was Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for the Arts. She reflects on her work as Treasurer and commitment to social equality.
Joan Sheldon
Labor politician Desley Boyle discusses her career that began in 1988 as a Councillor on the Cairns City Council before moving into state politics. She ended her ministerial career in 2011 as Minister for Local Government and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships and stepped down from her parliamentary seat in 2012. She discusses the challenges she faced in each of her portfolios, and focuses on her passion for the environment and good planning.
Desley Boyle
Public servant Ann Scott talks about her work in the Women's Policy Unit, the Public Sector Management Commission and the Queensland Police Service during the 1990s. She contrasts the outgoing Bjelke-Petersen Government with the incoming Goss Government, and discusses the reform agenda, the Fitzgerald Inquiry, and Criminal Justice Commission.
Ann Scott
Labor Party member Judy Spence discusses her extensive experience as a Minister in the Beattie and Bligh governments and outlines her contributions to Queensland politics in a range of areas including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Policy, Police and Corrective Services and social services.
Judy Spence
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