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Members’ biographical register

Mr James George Clarko

Principal Honours
Queen’s Jubilee Medal awarded 1977
Air Efficiency Medal 1990 and Australian Defence Medal 2008
Centenary of Federation Medal awarded 2003
Member of the Order of Australia (AM) awarded 12 June 2006 for service to the Western Australian Parliament serving in various parliamentary positions, including Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, and to the community of the City of Stirling
Date: 21 July 1932
Place: Cottesloe, Western Australia
Son of Henry George Clarko, engineer, and Mary Clare Brown
Marriage and Family
Married 25 August 1958, St Patrick's Church, Mt Lawley (Church of England) to Edith Laurel Loudon, daughter of John Maxwell
and Constance Joan Felton
Children: three daughters
Date: 7 April 2020
Place: Western Australia
Church of England
Educated Trinity College
University of Western Australia (1958–1961) BA; MA (prelim) advanced politics
Claremont Teachers’ College DipEd
Teacher, university lecturer and lobbyist
Employment History
Worked for Vacuum Oil Co (later Mobil Oil Co) as Depot Superintendent, and then sales representative Carnamah–Mingenew area 1950–1957
State Audit Department, 1957–1958
Trainee teacher, 1958–1961
Master, Perth Modern School 1962–1966
In-Service Officer, Education Department 1967
Senior Master Social Studies, Katanning Senior High School 1968
Lecturer, Social Studies and later in History and Politics at Secondary Teachers College (later Nedlands College of Advanced Education) 1969–1974
Political consultant from 1997 and registered lobbyist in 2009 for WA Independent Grocers Association
Local Government Service
Perth Shire Council and City of Stirling from 24 May 1969 to May 1975
Chairman of Finance, Staff and General Purposes Committee
Received award in 1977 for ‘unstinting service to City of Stirling’
Joined party 1958
President, North Beach branch 1959–1970
President, Stirling Division 1970–1974
Member, State Executive 1970–1974
Member, State Council 1960–1988
Awarded Distinguished Service Award of Liberal Party of Australia 1998
Date Elected
30 March 1974
Inaugural Speech
Clarko, James George, Inaugural Speech.pdfClarko, James George, Inaugural Speech.pdf
Inaugural Video
No inaugural video is available as filming did not start until May 2003
Search for speeches by James Clarko
Clarko, James George, Valedictory Speech.pdfClarko, James George, Valedictory Speech.pdf
Year Retired/Resigned
Karrinyup; Marmion
Parliamentary Service
  • MLA Karrinyup from 30 March 1974 to 4 February 1989 (Constituency abolished in redistribution)
  • MLA Marmion from 4 February 1989 to 14 December 1996 (Constituency abolished in redistribution)
  • Contested Karrinyup 20 February 1971
  • Government Whip from 1975 to 1977
  • Chairman of Committees from 2 July 1977 to 8 February 1982
  • Hon Minister assisting Minister for Education from 25 January 1982 to 14 May 1982
  • Minister for Education from 14 May 1982 to 25 February 1983
  • Shadow Minister for Education, Local Government (from April 1983 to 3 March 1984), Consumer Affairs and Planning (from 1984) from 13 March 1983 to 19 March 1986
  • Shadow Minister for Local Government and Planning from 19 March 1986 to 7 March 1989
  • Shadow Minister Local Government, Works and Services, Community Services (from 13 July 1989) and Racing and Gaming (from 13 July 1989) from 7 March 1989 to 17 June 1990
    Shadow Minister Local Government, Racing and Gaming, Works and Services (until 13 August 1990), Parliamentary and Electoral Matters, and Leader of the House from 17 June 1990 to August 1991
  • Shadow Minister Local Government (until 24 May 1992), Racing and Gaming, Parliamentary and Electoral Reform, and Planning (from 24 May 1992) from August 1991 to 24 November 1992
  • Coalition Shadow Minister for Parliamentary and Electoral Reform, and Planning from 24 November 1992 to 16 February 1993
  • Speaker from 17 June 1993 to 14 December 1996
  • Minister for Education from 14 May 1982 to 25 February 1983

  • Chairman, Public Accounts Committee from 13 August 1975 to 1976
  • Member, Public Accounts Committee 1974–1975
  • Member, Select Committee on Offices of Profit of MPs and Members’ Contracts with the Crown 1980–1982 (resigned when appointed Minister January 1982)
  • Chairman of Committees, from 2 July 1977 to 8 February 1982
Commonwealth Parliamentary Association
  • Delegate from WA branch Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) to 15th Australasian Regional Conference, Perth, 1979
  • Delegate from WA branch CPA to Parliamentary Seminar, London, March 1993
  • Delegate from WA branch CPA to 10th Australian and Pacific Regional Seminar, Papua New Guinea, September 1992
  • Joint President, Commonwealth Parliamentary Association 1993–1996
  • Commonwealth Parliamentary Association life member
Member, Australian College of Education
Member, No. 25 City of Perth Squadron (Citizen Air Force), Flight Lieutenant (Education Officer), Air Efficiency Award
Justice of the Peace, 1972
Longtime member and committee member, Trigg, North Beach and Waterman Community Associations
Member, Western Australian Cricket Association (WACA) from October 1967
Member, Claremont Football Club from 1953 (vice patron from 1970)
Member, Lake Karrinyup Country Club from 1970
Played football with Christian Brothers' College Fremantle Amateur Club 1950–1952
Played A grade Rugby Union with Cottesloe (at age 17), and later with University and Associates
State Schoolboy Rugby Union selector
Coached PMS rugby teams to several premierships
Vice patron, WA Rugby Union for several years
Also played cricket, tennis and golf
Patron, Sorrento Surf Life Saving Club from 1971. Life member from 2008.
Patron and vice patron, Trigg Island Surf Club

Vice Patron, State Surf Life Saving
Patron, German Shepherd Dog Association
Patron of numerous other organisations
President, Claremont Teachers College Student Council 1961
President, North Beach and Districts Sportsmen Club 1973–1974
President, Heartlands Tourism Association 1997–2002
BA, Dip Ed, MA (prelim) advanced politics
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. 46.
Daily News, 20 January 1982.
It's an Honour Accessed 7 February 2019.
Speakers Presidents.
West Australian, 1 April 1974, 25 July 1975, 9 April 2020.
Who's Who in Australia.
Further Information