Steve Bracks was elected to the Victorian Parliament for the Australian Labor Party in 1994. He became Victoria’s 44th Premier in October, 1999.
Mr Bracks was one of Victoria’s most successful Premiers. He won three consecutive elections achieving record majorities in 2002 and 2006.
The Bracks Government reinvigorated Victoria’s infrastructure and services while maintaining strong budgets and a growing economy.
As Premier, Mr Bracks invested heavily in education and skills with Victoria’s retention rate to Year 12 education one of the highest in Australia when he left office. He led a National Reform Agenda designed to increase workplace participation, improve skills, reduce business regulation and boost productivity. These proposals won backing from all Australian Governments.
After almost eight years as Premier, Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Minister for Veterans’ Affairs, Mr Bracks retired from Parliament on 27 July 2007.
Since then, Mr Bracks has held two major honorary positions: as an Adviser to the then Prime Minister of Timor-Leste, Xanana Gusmao (2007-2017); and as the Honorary Chair of The Union Education Foundation (2011 – ongoing).
In May 2021, Mr Bracks was appointed Chancellor of Victoria University. In addition, he chairs Maurice Blackburn Lawyers; the Melbourne Cricket Ground Trust; the Australian Football League (AFL) Strategic Community Investment Fund Advisory Board; and The Shannon Company. He is a non-executive director of the Bank of Sydney and Cbus Property Ltd.
Mr Bracks was Chair of the Cbus superannuation fund from 2009 to 2021; Independent Chair for the Australian Subscription Television and Radio Association from 2008 to 2013; Honorary Chair of the Organising Committee for the World Road Cycling Championships held in Victoria in 2010; Chair of AFL Sportsready – the training body of the AFL from 2013 to 2017; Chair of Cycling Australia 2017 to 2018; Chair of the McKell Institute Victoria 2016 to 2020; and Chair of Victory Offices Limited 2017 to 2022. From 2007 to 2019 he was a non-executive director of Jardine Lloyd Thomson Australia.
He is a member of the Australian Republican Movement’s Republican Advisory Panel; and, the West of Melbourne Alliance Board. He was a Senior Adviser to KPMG from 2007 to 2012 and a member of the National Australia Bank’s Philanthropic Board from 2008 to 2013.
In 2008, the Federal Government commissioned Mr Bracks to head a major review of the Australian Automotive Industry. He was the Automotive Envoy for the Australian Government 2009 to 2013. From 2011 to 2013 he was a Member of the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade Council for Australian-Arab Relations.
In 2022 the Federal Government appointed Mr Bracks Australia’s Special Representative in negotiations with Timor-Leste and Greater Sunrise joint venture partners regarding the development of the Greater Sunrise oil and gas field in the Timor Sea.
He is Patron of the Australia Lebanon Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Vic); The Balibo House Trust; The Burnet Institute; the Centre for Dialogue La Trobe University; the Conservation Ecology Centre – Cape Otway; the Eureka Democracy Centre, Ballarat; the Hadassah Australia Foundation; the Labor Academy; the Seaworks Foundation, Williamstown; The Sir Rupert Hamer Records Management Awards; the Western Health Foundation; and the Western Melbourne Tourism Board.
Mr Bracks received a Companion of the Order of Australia in 2010 for services to the Parliament and community of Victoria. In 2011 he was presented with the Timor-Leste Solidarity Medal. He was awarded Honorary Doctorates by Ballarat and Deakin Universities.
Mr Bracks remains a leading advocate for both multiculturalism and Aboriginal reconciliation.
Biography – current as at February 2023