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Members’ biographical register

Desmond Keith Dans

Date: 24 November 1924
Place: Perth, Western Australia
Keith Dans, miner and station manager, and Mary Frances
Marriage and Family
Married 4 November 1961, St Margaret’s Church, Nedlands (Church of England)
to Rikki Renouf Trenaman, daughter of Norman Marden St Claire and Joan Mabell Renouf
Children: one son and one daughter
Date: 2 January 2014
Place: Hilton, Western Australia
Cemetery: Taken by administrator at Fremantle Cemetery, Western Australia
Highgate Convent
Christian Brothers' College, Kalgoorlie
Kalgoorlie School of Mines
Union secretary
Employment History
Enlisted Royal Australian Navy Reserve 20 August 1942
Served in Pacific area on several ships especially Troopship SS Canberra 1 January 1943–1 June 1944 and HMAS Hobart 25–31 March 1943
Discharged 21 May 1946
Employed in odd jobs until went to sea with merchant marine in the late 1940s
Secretary Western Australia branch Seamen’s Union 1959–1971
Chairman Western Australia Port Operations Task Force 1988
Joined party circa 1958
Led Seamen’s Union back into Australian Labor Party
Member State Executive from 1959
Last president Fremantle District Council from 1960
Delegate to Federal Conference Hobart, 1971
Date Elected
22 May 1971
Inaugural Speech
Dans, Desmond Keith, Inaugural Speech.pdf
Inaugural Video
Search for speeches by Desmond Dans
Year Retired/Resigned
South Metropolitan
Parliamentary Service
  • MLC South Metropolitan Province 22 May 1971–21 May 1989

  • Government Whip 1973–74, Opposition Whip 1974–1976
  • Leader of the Opposition in Legislative Council 30 March 1976–February 1983
  • Shadow Minister for Police and Traffic March–June 1978
  • Shadow Minister for Industrial Relations and Employment June 1978–February 1983
  • Leader of the Government in the Legislative Council 25 February 1983–20 December 1984
  • Minister for Industrial Relations 25 February 1983–20 December 1984
  • Minister for Tourism, Racing and Gaming 20 December 1984–26 February 1986
  • Minister for Works and Services with special responsibility for the America’s Cup 26 February 1986–16 March 1987

  • Member Joint House Committee 1971–1980
  • Member Select Committee on Potato Industry in WA 1971
  • Member Select Committee on Workers’ Compensation Act Amendment Bill 1973

Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
  • Represented WA branch Commonwealth Parliamentary Association at General Conference, Suva, 1981
Member East Fremantle Yacht Club and South Fremantle Football Club
David Black, and Geoffrey Bolton. Biographical register of members of the Parliament of Western Australia volume two, 1930-2010, Perth, Western Australian Parliamentary History Project, 2011, p. 62.