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Members’ biographical register

Donald Walter Cooley

Principal Honours
Awarded Medal of the Order of Australia 1985 for service to the union movement
Date: 31 July 1918
Place: Perth, Western Australia
Son of Oliver John, foreman glassmaker, and Alfreda Godden
Marriage and Family
Married 18 January 1941, St Paul’s Church, West Perth to Elsie May Hodges, daughter of Ernest Alfred and Florence Ward
Children: two sons and one daughter
Date: 18 May 2007
Place: Augusta, Western Australia
Cemetery: Cremated at Bunbury, 23 May 2007. Ashes to be scattered by family in Augusta
Church of England
Leederville Primary School and Perth Boys’ School
Brewery worker and union official
Employment History
Employed by Swan Brewery 1940 and again 1946–1954, then Secretary Breweries and Bottleyards’ Employees’ Union
In militia 3 January 1940–March 1942
Australian Imperial Force from 1942
Private with 3rd Field Regiment and 6th Australian RSD
Served in Aitapa Wewak campaign, New Guinea
Discharged 20 February 1946

Secretary Breweries and Bottleyards Employees Union 1954–1976
Joined Australian Labor Party 1937
Delegate State Executive 1955–1976, Senior Vice–President 1966
Date Elected
22 May 1974
Inaugural Speech
Cooley, Donald, Inaugural Speech.pdf
Inaugural Video
Search for speeches by Donald Cooley
Year Retired/Resigned
North-East Metropolitan
Parliamentary Service
  • MLC North-East Metropolitan Province 22 May 1974–21 May 1980

  • Deputy Chairman of Committees 1977–1980
  • Member Standing Orders Committee 1977–1980

Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
  • Delegate from Western Australian branch of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association to 15th Australasian Regional Conference, Perth, 1979
Trustee Trades Unions Industrial Council (TUIC) and Trades and Labour Council (TLC) (from 1963) 1955–1965
Member Committees TUIC 1956–1961 and Senior Vice President 1962
President TLC 1965-1976
Member ACTU Executive 1971
Delegate to International Labour Organisation (ILO) Conference Geneva 1969 and 1973
Justice of the Peace 1968
Member Western Australian Institute of Technology (WAIT) Council 1972–1974
Retired to live in Augusta 1980
Published 1985
Leading the Way a History of the Breweries and Bottleyards Employees’ Union 1910–1975
D Black and G Bolton, eds, Biographical Register of Members of the Parliament of Western Australia: volume two 1930-2010, Western Australian Parliamentary History Project, Perth, WA, 2011, p. 50.
West Australian, 1 April 1974, 8 January 1976.
Who's Who in Australia (1977)