The Governor of Queensland is the representative in the state of Queensland of the Queen of Australia. In an analogous way to the Governor-General of Australia at the national level, the Governor performs constitutional and ceremonial functions at the state level. In particular the governor has the power to appoint and dismiss the Premier of Queensland and all other ministers in the cabinet, and issue writs for the election of the state parliament.
The current Governor of Queensland, Paul de Jersey, was sworn in on 29 July 2014. The Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Queensland, currently Catherine Holmes, acts in the position of Governor in the governor’s absence. As from June 2014, the Queen, upon the recommendation of then-Premier Campbell Newman, accorded all current, future and living former governors the title 'The Honourable' in perpetuity.
The Governor of Queensland has resided at Government House, Brisbane since 1910. The mansion, set in 14 hectares (35 acres) of gardens and bushland in the Brisbane suburb of Paddington, is also known as "Fernberg". Unlike Fernberg, the original Government House was purpose-built and was used from 1862 to 1910; the building still exists today on the grounds of Queensland University of Technology.
The office of Governor is established by the Constitution of Queensland. Section 29 of the Constitution as passed in 2001 provides that the office of Governor must exist and be appointed by the Sovereign, but parts of the earlier Constitution Act of 1867 relating to the Governor are still in force owing to the double entrenchment of them within the constitution by the government of Joh Bjelke-Petersen, who feared that the office and powers of State Governor might be abolished following the controversies of the 1975 Australian constitutional crisis at a federal level.
In accordance with the conventions of the Westminster system of parliamentary government, the Governor nearly always acts solely on the advice of the head of the elected government, the Premier of Queensland. Nevertheless, the Governor retains the reserve powers of the Crown, and has the right to appoint and dismiss Ministers, issue pardons, and dissolve Parliament.
The Queensland constitution expressly provides that the Governor is not subject to direction by any person and is not limited as to the Governor's sources of advice on the appointment or dismissal of Ministers (s. 35), another provision inserted by the Bjelke-Petersen government in the wake of the 1975 federal dismissal. This provision worked against Bjelke-Petersen when, in the dying days of his government in November 1987, he tried and failed to convince Governor Sir Walter Campbell to remove several ministers to shore up his own support within Parliament. When the parliamentary wing of the National Party deposed Bjelke-Petersen and elected one of the dissident ministers, Mike Ahern, as new Leader of the National Party, Sir Joh initially refused to resign as Premier and Sir Walter resisted calls to dismiss him. Sir Joh elected to resign on 1 December 1987.
The Governor is head of the Executive Council, a Queensland equivalent to the Federal Executive Council. The Council is composed of ministers from the government of the day. The Chief Justice of Queensland and other judges in the Queensland judicial system are appointed by the Governor acting on the advice of the Executive Council.
The governor standard comprises a union jack with a white roundel in the center with the state badge of Queensland: a light blue Maltese cross, surmounted by a royal crown and surrounded by garland of laurel leaves.
The general design of Standards for British Governors was approved by Queen Victoria in 1869. The design for Governors of Queensland was created and flown as a personal standard since 1876, when the Maltese Cross was adopted as the State Badge.
If the Standard is flying at Government House, on a vehicle or at an event, this indicates that the Governor is present.
- Past and present standards of the governor
List of Governors of Queensland
The first Australian- (and Queensland-) born Governor of Queensland was Lieutenant-General Sir John Lavarack (appointed 1946). His successor, Sir Henry Abel Smith was British. All subsequent governors have been Australian-born, except for Leneen Forde, who was born in Canada but who emigrated to Australia at an early age.
|Portrait||Country of birth||Took office||Left office||Time|
|United Kingdom||10 December 1859||4 January 1868||8 years, 25 days|
|United Kingdom||14 August 1868||2 January 1871||2 years, 141 days|
|United Kingdom||12 August 1871||12 November 1874||3 years, 92 days|
|United Kingdom||23 January 1875||14 March 1877||2 years, 50 days|
|United Kingdom||20 July 1877||2 May 1883||5 years, 286 days|
|British West Indies||6 November 1883||9 October 1888||4 years, 338 days|
|United Kingdom||1 May 1889||31 December 1895||6 years, 244 days|
|United Kingdom||9 April 1896||19 December 1901||5 years, 254 days|
|United Kingdom||24 March 1902||10 October 1904||2 years, 200 days|
|United Kingdom||30 November 1905||26 May 1909||3 years, 177 days|
|United Kingdom||2 December 1909||16 July 1914||4 years, 226 days|
|United Kingdom||15 March 1915||3 February 1920||4 years, 325 days|
|United Kingdom||3 December 1920||17 September 1925||4 years, 288 days|
|British Ceylon||13 July 1927||7 April 1932||4 years, 299 days|
|United Kingdom||13 June 1932||23 April 1946||13 years, 314 days|
|Colony of Queensland||1 October 1946||4 December 1957||11 years, 64 days|
|17||Henry Abel Smith
|United Kingdom||18 March 1958||18 March 1966||8 years|
|Australia||21 March 1966||21 March 1972||6 years|
|Australia||21 March 1972||20 March 1977||5 years, 213 days|
|Australia||22 April 1977||21 July 1985||8 years, 90 days|
|Australia||22 July 1985||29 July 1992||7 years, 7 days|
|Canada||29 July 1992||29 July 1997||5 years|
|Australia||29 July 1997||29 July 2003||6 years|
|Australia||29 July 2003||29 July 2008||5 years|
|Australia||29 July 2008||29 July 2014||6 years|
|26||Paul de Jersey
|Australia||29 July 2014||present||6 years, 5 days|
Living former governors
Four former governors of Queensland are alive, the oldest being Leneen Forde (1992–97, born 1935).
|Name||Term as governor||Date of birth|
|Leneen Forde||1992–1997||12 May 1935|
|Peter Arnison||1997–2003||21 October 1940|
|Dame Quentin Bryce||2003–2008||23 December 1942|
|Penelope Wensley||2008–2014||18 October 1946|
The most recent death of a former governor was that of Sir Walter Campbell (1985–92), on 4 September 2004.
List of Administrators and Lieutenant-Governors of Queensland
Administrators and Lieutenant-Governors are deputy roles generally appointed to carry out the duties of the Governor when the Governor is unavailable, due to travel or illness. If one is not appointed, then the duties are carried out by the Chief Justice of Queensland (or the most senior judge available). The following are the Administrators and Lieutenant-Governors of Queensland:
|Maurice Charles O’Connell||4 January 1868 – 14 August 1868||Administrator|
|Maurice Charles O'Connell||2 January 1871 – 12 August 1871||Administrator|
|Maurice Charles O'Connell||12 November 1874 – 23 January 1875||Administrator|
|Maurice Charles O'Connell||14 March 1877 – 10 April 1877||Administrator|
|Arthur Edward Kennedy||10 April 1877 – 20 July 1877||Administrator|
|Joshua Peter Bell||19 March 1880 – 22 November 1880||Administrator|
|Arthur Hunter Palmer||2 May 1883 – 6 November 1883||Administrator|
|Arthur Hunter Palmer||20 April 1886 – 13 December 1886||Administrator|
|Arthur Hunter Palmer||9 October 1888 – 1 May 1889||Administrator|
|Arthur Hunter Palmer||15 November 1895 – 9 April 1896||Lieutenant Governor Administrator|
|Samuel Griffith||21 June 1901 – 24 March 1902||Lieutenant Governor|
|Hugh Muir Nelson||10 October 1904 – 30 November 1905||Lieutenant Governor|
|Arthur Morgan||27 May 1909 – 2 December 1909||Lieutenant Governor|
|Arthur Morgan||16 July 1914 – 15 March 1915||Lieutenant Governor|
|William Lennon||3 February 1920 – 3 December 1920||Lieutenant Governor|
|William Lennon||17 September 1925 – 13 June 1927||Lieutenant Governor|
|William Lennon||8 May 1929 – 2 June 1929||Lieutenant Governor|
|James William Blair||7 April 1932 – 1 June 1932||Administrator|
|James William Blair||17 May 1937 – 21 November 1937||Administrator|
|Frank Cooper||24 April 1946 – 30 September 1946||Lieutenant Governor|
|Alan Mansfield||25 January 1957 – 18 March 1958||Administrator|
|Alan Mansfield||31 March 1960 – 24 May 1960||Administrator|
|Alan Mansfield||18 April 1963 – 18 October 1963||Administrator|
|William Mack||10 March 1966 – 21 March 1966||Administrator|
|William Mack||20 March 1969 – 30 June 1969||Administrator|
|Joseph Aloysius Sheehy||30 June 1969 – 18 September 1969||Administrator|
|Mostyn Hanger||9 March 1972 – 21 March 1972||Administrator|
|Mostyn Hanger||21 March 1977 – 22 April 1977||Administrator|
- "Queensland Governor Paul de Jersey sworn in at Parliament House". ABC News. 29 July 2014. Archived from the original on 29 July 2014. Retrieved 29 July 2014.
- "20 June 2014" (PDF). Queensland Government Gazette. p. 15. Archived (PDF) from the original on 19 March 2018. Retrieved 20 March 2018.
- "The Executive Government of Queensland". Queensland Parliament. Archived from the original on 25 November 2017. Retrieved 25 November 2017.
- "Governors and Deputy Governors of Queesland" (PDF). Queensland Parliament. 2014. Archived (PDF) from the original on 30 March 2016. Retrieved 15 December 2016.