Andrew Humpherson

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Andrew Humpherson
BE (Hons)
Member of the New South Wales Parliament
for Davidson
In office
7 May 1992 – 2 March 2007
Preceded by Terry Metherell
Succeeded by Jonathan O'Dea
Personal details
Born (1960-08-15) 15 August 1960 (age 54)
London, United Kingdom
Political party Liberal Party of Australia
Alma mater University of New South Wales
Occupation Engineer and politician

Andrew Humpherson, (born 15 August 1960) is a former Australian politician, elected as a member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly for Davidson from 1992–2007. He has since pursued a career in public affairs overseeing the Government and Public Affairs Division of Australia's nuclear agency and subsequently returned to NSW politics in 2011 as Chief of Staff to the Energy and Resources Minister in the newly elected O'Farrell government.

Early life[edit]

Humpherson was born in the United Kingdom in 1960.[1] His family moved to Australia in 1970 and he was educated at Davidson High School where he became a member of the Student Council and developed a passion for politics as a member of the Warringah Youth Council.[2] He attended the University of New South Wales where he graduated with honours in the degree of Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical).[2]

Between 1986 and 1992 he was employed as an engineer and also a Territory Manager for Shell Australia. Humpherson entered politics on 14 March 1987 as an independent Councillor on Warringah Shire Council[3] and was Deputy Shire President from 1991–1992 until he resigned on 30 May 1992, following his election to state parliament.[4]

Political and business career[edit]

He was elected into the New South Wales Legislative Assembly for the seat of Davidson, at a May 1992 by-election brought on by the resignation of former Education Minister and Liberal-turned-independent member Terry Metherell, who resigned to take up a public service appointment offered by the Greiner government.[5] The Independent Commission Against Corruption undertook an investigation into the appointment amid allegations that this amounted to a corrupt attempt to have Davidson return to the Liberal Party, which had lost its parliamentary majority at the 1991 election.[5] The independents who held the balance of power subsequently forced Greiner's resignation as Premier, but ICAC was found to have exceeded its jurusdiction by the Supreme Court of New South Wales. However Davidson returned to the Liberals, with Humpherson easily winning the by-election ahead of 14 other candidates, despite a 16.1 per cent swing against the Liberal Party.[5]

As a backbencher, Humpherson served in various Parliamentary committees, until in 2000 when he was appointed as a Shadow Minister under Opposition Leader Kerry Chikarovski.[1] He held various shadow portfolios including Housing and Corrective Services (2000–2002), Planning and Environment (2002–2003), Justice (2003–2006), Community Services (2005–2006) and Emergency Services (2003–2007).[1]

He was active in pursuing better policies to protect key public lands, make smoke detectors compulsory in NSW, sell high value public housing stock to meet housing needs; and pressed for tougher parole and contraband regimes in prisons.

Humpherson was narrowly defeated in a preselection battle before the 2007 election in favour of a challenger who had undertaken widespread branch-stacking Jonathan O'Dea.[6] Humpherson had cross-factional backing among many delegates, but attracted controversy in local branches after reportedly suggesting party members to quit branches under O'Dea's control, thereby reducing their voting power. Despite having support of the Party Leader, Peter Debnam, Humpherson lost the vote 52 votes to 54 and he retired from parliament.[6]

In March 2007, Humpherson was appointed to the newly created position of general manager of Government and Public Affairs at the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation (ANSTO) and was a member of the management committee.[7]

Humpherson left ANSTO in late 2010 to establish his own government relations consultancy, Waratah Advisory, in anticipation of an expected win by his former Liberal colleagues at the March 2011 NSW state election. He was a 2GB election night commentator and presenter on election outcomes. After the election he changed his career path and accepted an opportunity to be Chief of Staff to the newly appointed Resources and Energy Minister the Hon Chris Hartcher MP so he cold participate in the implementation of policies developed over 16 years in Opposition.

His experience was invaluable in this period overseeing the closure of the liability of the $1.6 billion Solar bonus Scheme, the merger of the State's electricity network businesses, the implementation of a new land use policy which established a better balance for mining and coal seam gas in key parts of NSW, the deregulation of electricity prices and the removal of the cold war era ban on uranium exploration. He continued in this role until the resignation of Hartcher in December 2013 and has returned to consulting and providing strategic political advice.


  1. ^ a b c "Mr Andrew Humpherson, BE(Hons) MP". Members of Parliament. Parliament of New South Wales. Retrieved 16 February 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "Andrew Humpherson (1960 – ) (sic)". State Library of New South Wales. Retrieved 23 February 2007. 
  3. ^ Collier, Shayne (26 March 1987). "Warringah Reborn". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 27 May 2009. [dead link]
  4. ^ "Presidents, Mayors, Councillors, Shire Clerks and General Managers of Warringah Council". Warringah Council. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  5. ^ a b c "Davidson – profile". The Poll Bludger – 2007 election. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  6. ^ a b "Humpherson loses preselection". ABC News. 4 November 2006. Retrieved 22 May 2009. 
  7. ^ "People at ANSTO". Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation. Retrieved 22 May 2009. [dead link]
Parliament of New South Wales
Preceded by
Terry Metherell
Member for Davidson
1992 – 2007
Succeeded by
Jonathan O'Dea