Kay Hull

Member for Riverina (NSW)

NPA; NP, 1998–2010

Kay Hull, Member for Riverina (NSW, 1998–2010), was the first woman from New South Wales to represent the National Party of Australia (later The Nationals) and became the first female Nationals Whip in 2006.

Hull championed services for rural Australia, particularly areas within her electorate. When Ansett Airlines collapsed and regional carriers Hazelton and Kendell Airlines were under threat, Hull worked tirelessly to ensure that regional Australia would have access to air services, resulting in the establishment of Regional Express Airlines (REX). A caricature of Hull was engraved onto the forward fuselage of an aircraft in the REX fleet in her honour.

Hull was the only member to cross the floor to vote against the final sale of Telstra in 2005. Hull maintained that Telstra should be structurally separated in order to build a technologically advanced network while selling off its retail arm. Legislation to achieve this was passed by both houses in 2010.

In her valedictory speech, Hull pointed out that as chair of the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Family and Community Affairs she tabled Every picture tells a story (2003), a report which eventually saw changes to the Family Law Act and the administration of child custody and family law.

Kay Hull.

Image courtesy of Nadine Emmerton.