Senator Ian Macdonald was first elected to represent Queensland in the Australian Senate in 1990 and was re-elected in 1996, 2001, 2007, 2013 and 2016. He has led the Liberal and then LNP ticket at every election.
Senator Macdonald has been Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation, Minister for Regional Services, Territories and Local Government and Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment in the Howard Government and held the position of Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Northern and Remote Australia and Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for the Defence Force and Defence Support. He is a member of the Joint Standing Committee on Foreign Affairs Defence and Trade.
He chairs the Senate Legal and Constitutional affairs Legislation committee, as well as holding the Vice – chair position for the Legal and Constitutional References Committee. He also is Co-Chair of the ‘Friends of the Outback Highway’ Parliamentary Group. Over the years he has participated in Committees dealing with Rural and Regional issues, Transport, Infrastructure and Crime.
He is, following this Election the longest serving Parliamentarian in the Australian Parliament.
He is also the longest serving front bencher of any Party in the Senate having served over 19 years in ministerial or shadow portfolios.
Senator Macdonald is passionate about developing Northern Australia and helping people living in regional and remote areas fight for the same services as people living in urban Australia receive. The release of the Northern Australia White Paper has seen Senator Macdonald appointed as Chair of the Coalition Northern Australia Development White Paper Implementation oversight Committee. As a northerner, he is conscious of the importance of our Defence Forces and Border Protection.
Before being elected to the Senate, Senator Macdonald was a Solicitor with offices in Ayr, Bowen and Airlie Beach. He was an elected Councillor on the Burdekin Shire Council for 11 years and was a member of various local service and community organisations.
Senator Macdonald’s electorate office is in Townsville and he still resides in Ayr with his wife of thirty-nine years, Lesley.