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Hon Mia Davies Winifred Margaret Piesse Hon Robyn Mary McSweeney Ms Eleni Evangel Hon Dr Elizabeth Constable Hon Margaret McAleer Mrs Mary Alice Holman Carmen Mary Lawrence Diana Muriel Warnock Hon Michelle Hopkins Roberts Hon Alannah Joan Geraldine MacTiernan Hon Sheila Margaret McHale Hon Adele Farina Ms Dianne Joy Guise Hon Sheila Mills Hon Carolynn Anne Burton Hon Shelley Frances Archer Ms Wendy Maxine Duncan Mrs Glenys Jenolan Godfrey Hon Alyssa Kathleen Hayden Mrs Monica Rose Holmes Mrs Rhonda Kathleen Parker Mrs Margaret June Craig Mrs (Annie) Florence Gillies Cardell-Oliver Mrs Edith Dircksey Cowan Hon Grace Sydney Vaughan Hon Jacqui Ellen Boydell Mrs Elizabeth (Libby) Mettam Elise Irwin Hon Helen Margaret Morton Hon Liza Mary Harvey Mrs Katina Hodson-Thomas Mrs Cheryl Lynn Edwardes Hon Ruby Florence Hutchison Hon Diane Phyllis Airey Hon Lyla Daphne Elliott Dr Hilda Margaret Turnbull Ms Andrea Ruth Mitchell Hon Donna Evelyn Mary Faragher Hon Muriel Grace Patterson Hon Valma Eileen Ferguson Hon June Dorothy Van De Klashorst Hon Christine Sharp Hon Lynn Ellen MacLaren Hon Alison Marie Xamon Hon Elsie Kay Hallahan Hon Margaret Anne Bernadette Rowe Hon Elizabeth (Liz) Lloyd Behjat Dr Janet May Woollard Ms Susan (Sue) Elizabeth Walker Hon Barbara Mary Scott Hon Helen Margaret Hodgson Hon Giz Mary Watson Hon Diane (Dee) Elizabeth Margetts Hon Diane Marie Evers Ms Adele Simone Carles Hon Suzanne (Sue) Mary Ellery Hon Sally Elizabeth Talbot Ms Josephine (Josie) Farrer Ms Simone Frances McGurk Ms Janine Marie Freeman Mrs Lisa Margaret O'Malley Mrs Jessica Mary Christine Stojkovski Ms Emily Louise Hamilton Hon Samantha Helen Rowe Beryl Lilian Jones Cheryl May Davenport Carol Anne Martin Judy Mary Edwards Ljiljanna Maria Ravlich Louise Clare Pratt Shelley Elizabeth Eaton Alanna Therese Clohesy Pamela Ann Buchanan Pamela Anne Beggs Yvonne Daphne Henderson Jaye Amber Radisich Judy Hughes Helen Hong Hui Bullock Linda Rosemary Savage Laine Courtney McDonald Robyn Marjorie Jane Clarke Sabine Elisabeth Winton Jessica Shaw Jacqueline Patricia Watkins Judyth Watson Megan Irene Anwyl Hon Kate Doust Margaret Mary Quirk Lisa Loraine Baker Rita Saffioti Amber-Jade Sanderson Cassie Michelle Rowe
Head shots of the 93 current and former female Members of the Western Australian Parliament


Western Australian Female Firsts

Australia's first female Member of Parliament and first female of the Western Australian Legislative Assembly
Edith Cowan was the first female Member of Parliament in any Parliament in Australia and the second to be elected to a Parliament in the British Empire. She was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Assembly as the Member for West Perth 21 March 1921. Since then there have been 83 women members elected to the Western Australian Parliament.
First female President of the Legislative Council in Western Australia
Hon Catherine (Kate) Doust, MLC, Member for South Metropolitan region, was elected President of the Legislative Council 23 May 2017. She is the first female President, being elected to the 40th Parliament.
First female Leader of the Government in the Legislative Council in Western Australia
Hon. Suzanne (Sue) Ellery, MLC, is the first female to be Leader of the Government in the Legislative Council.
Australia's First female Member of Parliament Representing the ALP
May Holman was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Assembly at a by-election on 3 April 1925 following the death of her father. She represented the Forrest Division until her tragic death on 20 March 1939. At this time she had just been re-elected for a fifth term. In the by-election that followed her brother Edward became the third successive member of her family to represent the seat of Forrest.
Australia's first female Member of Parliament to serve ten years in Parliament
May Holman (ALP) was the first female Australian Member of Parliament to hold a parliamentary seat for ten years, 3 April 1925-1935. She was also the first female in the British Empire to do so.
First sisters to be elected and to the same Parliament in any Australian Parliament
Samantha Rowe was first elected to the Legislative Council for the region of East Metropolitan Region from 5 April 2012. Elected to the Thirty-Ninth Parliament for the East Metropolitan Region on 5 April 2012 for term commencing 22 May 2013. Re-elected 11 March 2017 for a term commencing 22 May 2017.

Cassandra (Cassie) Rowe, Samantha Rowe’s sister was first elected the Legislative Assembly for the seat of Belmont, 11 March 2017.
First all-female leaders of a Parliamentary Party
Mia Jane Davies MLA, is the first female leader of the Western Australian National Party and first female Leader of any National Party in Australia.

The first National Party all female leadership group with the deputy leader also female - Jacqui Ellen Boydell, MLC.
Australia's first female Member of Parliament to be suspended from Parliament
Florence Cardell-Oliver (Nationalist) became the first woman Member of Parliament to be suspended from 'the service of the House' on 10 December 1941 (PD, 10 December 1941, p.2595). She described the speech made by one of her own party colleagues as a 'disgrace to the Assembly'. She then refused all requests for her to withdraw her remarks.
Australia's first female Senator
Dorothy Tangney (ALP) became Australia's first female Senator on 22 September 1949. She retained her seat and was the only female Senator for a record twenty five years. She holds the honour of being the first woman appointed to a parliamentary committee in the Commonwealth Parliament, the first Commonwealth woman to represent Australia on an overseas delegation, to preside over the Senate and take the Chair in any of the English speaking Parliaments. She also has the distinction of being the first Western Australian born female to be made a Dame Commander of the British Empire - and for ten years, the only one.
Australia's first female Cabinet Minister
Florence Cardell-Oliver (Nationalist) became Australia's first female Cabinet Minister on 7 October 1949 when she was appointed the Western Australian Minister for Health, Supply and Shipping. Previously she had served as Honorary Minister (from 1 April 1947).
First Female Member of the Legislative Council of Western Australia
Ruby Hutchinson (ALP) was the first female member of the Western Australian Legislative Council when she was elected on 22 May 1954. She represented the Suburban Province. She was the first woman to take her place in any Australian Council. During her seventeen years of service she was the only woman to serve in that chamber.
Australia's first female Member of Parliament to serve concurrently with her husband
Ruby Hutchinson (ALP) was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Council for a term commencing 22 May 1954. She represented the Suburban Province. In 1965 she was elected for the North-East Metropolitan Province. When she married Mr Frederick Richard Hugh Lavery MLC on 14 May 1966 she became the first female in Australia to serve concurrently with her husband.
Western Australia's first female Member to represent the Liberal Party
Margaret McAleer was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Council for a term commencing 22 May 1974. She was one of two members to represent the Upper West Province. By 1980 she was appointed Government Whip and continued in the role of Opposition Whip until her retirement in 1993. She also assisted as shadow Minister for Women's Interests and served on a number of parliamentary committees.
Western Australia's first female Member to represent the National Party
Winifred Piesse was the first female Member of the Western Australian Parliament to represent the National Party (or National Country Party). She was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Council for a term commencing 22 May 1977 for the Lower Central Province.
Western Australia's first female Member of the House of Representatives
Wendy Fatin (ALP) was elected to the House of Representatives in 1983. She represented the Brand electorate. She also has the honour of being the first woman from WA to become a Minister, when she was sworn in as the Minister for Local Government from 4 April 1990.
First female Member of the Western Australian Parliament to serve in both the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council
Kay Hallahan (ALP) was the first member of the Western Australian Parliament to serve in the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council. She was first elected to the Western Australian Legislative Council for a term commencing 22 May 1983, representing the South East Metropolitan Region. She was later elected to the Western Australian Legislative Assembly for the seat of Armadale electorate from 6 February 1993 until retiring at the 1996 state election.
First Labor female Member of the Western Australian Parliament to hold a Cabinet post.
Kay Hallahan (ALP) and Pam Beggs (ALP) share the honour of being the first Labor females selected for a cabinet posting on 26 February 1986. Kay Hallahan (ALP) is also the first female Member of the Legislative Council to hold a ministerial post.
First female to become Deputy Leader of the Government in the Legislative Council
Kay Hallahan (ALP) on 16 March 1987 became the first female to hold the position of Deputy Leader of a party in the Legislative Council.
First female to chair a Select Committee in the Western Australian Parliament
Beryl Jones (ALP) was the first woman to chair a Select Committee in either house of Parliament. She chaired the Legislative Council's Select Committee into Charitable Collections from 28 April 1987.
First female in the Western Australian Parliament to give birth while a member of Cabinet
In 1988 Yvonne Henderson (ALP) became the first woman in Western Australia to give birth while serving as a member of Cabinet. She was the Minister for Lands and the Arts.
First female to chair a Select Committee in the Legislative Assembly
On 15 November 1988 Judyth Watson (ALP) became the first woman to chair a Select Committee in the Legislative Assembly. She was appointed chair of the Select Committee on the Reproductive Technology Working Party's Report.
First female to be elected to the Western Australian Parliament with a Doctorate
Judyth Watson (ALP) and Carmen Lawrence (ALP) share the distinction of being the first women elected to the Western Australian Parliament with a Doctorate of Philosophy. They both graduated from the University of Western Australia.
First National Party female member to be elected to the Western Australian Legislative Assembly
When Dr Hilda Turnbull was elected to the Legislative Assembly seat of Collie on 4 February 1989 she became the first female to represent the National Party (Country Party) in the Legislative Assembly.
Australia's first female Premier
Carmen Lawrence (ALP) became Australia's first female Premier on 12 February 1990. She was elected in 1986 as the Member for Subiaco and in 1989 as the Member for Glendalough. She served as Premier until 1993 when the ALP was defeated in the state election.
First Independent female elected to the Western Australian Parliament
When Dr Elizabeth Constable won the by-election for Floreat in July 1991, she became the first female to be elected to the Western Australian Parliament without party endorsement.
First female Leader of the Opposition in Western Australia
Carmen Lawrence (ALP) became Western Australia's first female Leader of the Opposition in 1993 when the ALP was defeated in the state election. She served as Leader until resigning in February 1994 to take up office as the Member of the House of Representatives for Fremantle on 12 March 1994.
First female Attorney General in any Parliament in Australia
When Cheryl Edwardes (Lib) was appointed Attorney General on 8 March 1993, she was the first female Attorney General in Australia.
Australia's first female member of Parliament to serve in both the State and Federal Parliaments
Carmen Lawrence (ALP) was first elected to the Western Australian Legislative Assembly in 1986 as the Member for Subiaco and in 1989 as the Member for Glendalough. She was then elected to the House of Representatives on 12 March 1994, representing the federal seat of Fremantle. She is the third West Australian, after Lord Forrest and Hon Joe Berinson, to serve in both a State and Federal Parliament.
Western Australia's first female member of Parliament born in a non-English speaking country
Born in Split in Croatia Ljiljanna Ravlich (ALP) was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Council for a term commencing 22 May 1997. She was the first female Member of the Western Australian Parliament born in a non-English speaking country. She represented the East Metropolitan Region.
First female to lead a Party (the Democrats) and to be elected to the Western Australian Parliament
Helen Hodgson was the first female Member of Parliament to represent the Democrats. She was elected to the Legislative Council for the North Metropolitan Region commencing 22 May 1997- 2001. As leader of the Democrats she became the first female parliamentary party leader in WA.
First female to be elected to represent the Greens
Christine Sharp and Giz Watson were elected to the Legislative Council for a term commencing 22 May 1997. Christine Sharp represented the South West Region and Giz Watson represented the North Metropolitan Region.
First female to chair a Standing Committee in the Western Australian Parliament
When Dr Christine (Chrissy) Sharp (GWA) was chosen to chair the Legislative Council's Standing Committee on Ecologically Sustainable Development on 26 June 1997, she became the first woman to chair a Standing Committee in the Western Australian Parliament.
First female Member of any Australian Parliament to openly declare to be a Lesbian
Giz Watson (GWA) was elected to the Legislative Council representing the North Metropolitan Region for a term commencing 22 May 1997. In her inaugural speech (PD, 10 June 1997, p.3534), Giz touched on her commitment to representing the lesbian and gay community as the first openly declared lesbian parliamentarian in Australia.
Youngest female Member ever elected to the Western Australian Parliament
Jaye Radisich (ALP) is the youngest woman ever elected to the Western Australian Parliament. When she was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Assembly on 10 February 2001 as the Member for Swan Hills, she was 24 years, 10 months and 11 days old.
First Aboriginal Female to be elected to an Australian Parliament
Carol Martin (ALP) made history by becoming the first Indigenous Member of the Western Australian Parliament and any Australian Parliament when she was elected to the Western Australian Legislative Assembly on 10 February 2001. She represented the Kimberley electorate.
Youngest Female Member elected to the Western Australian Legislative Council
Louise Pratt was the youngest female elected to the Legislative Council for East Metropolitan Region on 10 February 2001-2005 (for term commencing 22 May 2001). She resigned 29 October 2007 to contest the 24 November 2007 Federal Election, being elected to the Australian Senate representing Western Australia
First female to be made President of the Western Australian National Party
Wendy Duncan was the first female to be elected President of the National Party of Western Australia from 2004 – 2009.
Youngest female to be made a Cabinet Minister
Donna Evelyn Mary Faragher MLC, Member for East Metropolitan became the youngest female minister when she was appointed Minister for the Environment and Minister for Youth on 23 September 2008 in the 2008 Liberal-National Government. She was 33 years old.
First independent female Member to become a Cabinet Minister
Dr Elizabeth Constable was the first female Independent Member to become a Cabinet Minister. She was responsible for Education, Tourism and Women’s Interests in the 2008 Barnett Liberal minority Government.
First Greens member to be elected to the Legislative Assembly
Adele Carles (GreensWA) made history on 16 May 2009 when she was elected as the Member for Fremantle at the by-election after the retirement of Jim McGinty (ALP). This was the first time a lower house seat had been held by the GreensWA. Ms Carles’ election also signified the first time that the GreensWA was given party status having five elected members in the Parliament. On 8 May 2010 Adele Carles quit GreensWA to become an Independent Green.
View the Fact Sheet on Women in the Western Australian Parliament


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