Arthur Sinodinos

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Senator The Honourable
Arthur Sinodinos
AO
Senator for New South Wales
Incumbent
Assumed office
2 November 2011
Preceded by Helen Coonan
Assistant Treasurer
In office
18 September 2013 – 19 December 2014
Prime Minister Tony Abbott
Preceded by David Bradbury
Succeeded by TBD
Personal details
Born Arthur Sinodinos
(1957-02-25) 25 February 1957 (age 57)
Newcastle, New South Wales
Political party Liberal Party
Residence Rose Bay
Alma mater University of Newcastle
Profession Economist;
Investment banker;
politician
Religion Eastern Orthodoxy[1]

Arthur Sinodinos AO[2] (born 25 February 1957 in Newcastle, New South Wales[3]), an Australian politician, is a Liberal member of the Senate representing New South Wales since 2011. Sinodinos was the Assistant Treasurer in the Abbott Ministry.[4] He stepped aside from his ministerial duties during an investigation by the New South Wales Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC), although he still formally held the position until he officially resigned on 19 December 2014.[5][6] Prior to his appointment to the Senate, he was a senior public servant and investment banker.

Background and early career[edit]

Born in Australia to Greek immigrants, Sinodinos was raised in Newcastle. His father was a member of the left-aligned Seaman's Union that, during Sinodinos' early years, was campaigning against the United States intervention in Vietnam. His mother recalled stories of the Greek Civil War of the 1940s where Communist insurgents would knock on the door of their family home at night. Sinodinos claims that this helped him form his early political views.[1]

Sinodinos graduated from the University of Newcastle in 1979 with a Bachelor of Commerce with Honours. He then entered the Australian Public Service as a graduate recruit, working within the Department of Finance, before working in the Department of the Treasury between 1980 and 1987 and again between 1989 and 1995.[3]

He was the Chief of Staff to the then Prime Minister of Australia John Howard from 1997 to 2006, after serving with him previously from 1987 to 1989 when he was Opposition Leader and rejoining him in 1995.[7] As a close confidant of the Prime Minister, he was regarded as one of the most powerful people in the country.[8]

Corporate career[edit]

He left to become a director with the investment bank Goldman Sachs JBWere,[9] and became the Regional general manager, Business and Private Bank at National Australia Bank; reportedly declining an offer to become Australian Ambassador to the United States.[6] In 2008, he was part of a panel that mediated public input into the Defence White Paper.[10] In March 2009, he was appointed managing director for Government, Education and Carbon Solutions, Institutional Banking, Business Banking Australia at the National Australia Bank.[11]

Sinodinos became a director of Australian Water Holdings Pty Ltd (AWH) in 2008 and chairman in 2010. Positions he resigned on becoming a senator.[12][dead link][13]

Political career[edit]

Sinodinos served as honorary Finance Director (2009 to 2011) and President (2011-2012) for the NSW branch of the Liberal Party. Initially touted as a candidate for the lower house seat of Bradfield,[14] on 2 November 2011 Sinodinos was appointed to the Australian Senate representing New South Wales. He replaced the Liberal Senator Helen Coonan, following her resignation. Sinodinos' original term was due to expire on 30 June 2014,[3][15] however at the 2013 election he was elected to a full six-year term, ending on 30 June 2020. Howard was present in Parliament when Sinodinos delivered his maiden speech.[16]

During 2012 Sinodinos was a regular columnist, writing in The Australian.[17]

Corruption allegations[edit]

On 19 March 2014, Sinodinos stepped down from his position as Assistant Federal Treasurer while allegations regarding his possible involvement in corruption in relation to Australian Water Holdings were being investigated. After a delay in the finding being handed down, on 19 December 2014 Sinodinos announced that he had officially resigned as Assistant Treasurer.[6]

Honours[edit]

Sinodinos was appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2008 for service to politics through the executive function of government, to the development of economic policy and reform, and to the Greek community.[2][18]

Personal[edit]

Sinodinos lives in New South Wales with his wife, whom he met at a Greek Orthodox Church, and their children.[1] He has been a director of the Mary MacKillop Foundation.[19]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Sinodinos, Arthur (28 November 2011). Senator Arthur Sinodinos (transcript and streaming audio). interview with Julia Baird. Australia. Sunday Profile. ABC Local Radio. Retrieved 7 June 2012. 
  2. ^ a b "Search Australian Honours: SINODINOS, Arthur". It's an honour. Commonwealth of Australia. 9 June 2008. Retrieved 7 June 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c "Biography for SINODINOS, Arthur". Parliament of Australia. 2011. 
  4. ^ "Tony Abbott's cabinet and outer ministry". The Sydney Morning Herald. AAP. 16 September 2013. Retrieved 16 September 2013. 
  5. ^ "Arthur Sinodinos quits frontbench, but ICAC scrutiny set to continue". The Sydney Morning Herald. 20 March 2014. Retrieved 20 March 2014. 
  6. ^ a b c Wright, Tony (19 December 2014). "Arthur Sinodinos resigns as Assistant Treasurer: tragedy wrapped in mystery". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  7. ^ "PM'S chief of staff resigns". news.com.au. 8 December 2006. 
  8. ^ Kirk, Alexandra (2 October 2003). "Backroom politics with the PM's Chief of Staff". PM (ABC Radio) (Australia). 
  9. ^ Meterell, Mark (8 December 2006). "PM's top gun quits for bank". The Sydney Morning Herald. 
  10. ^ "Top Howard aide signs with Labor". The Sydney Morning Herald. 18 March 2008. 
  11. ^ "Profile of Arthur Sinodinos". Celebrity Speakers. 
  12. ^ "Australian Water Holdings: what you need to know". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 20 March 2014. [dead link]
  13. ^ McClymont, Kate; Swan, Jonathan; Whitbourn, Michaela (22 March 2014). "Arthur Sinodinos: The man least likely". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 19 December 2014. 
  14. ^ Priestley, Andrew (16 June 2009). "Bradfield-ing the question: will Arthur Sinodinos be the next MP for Bradfield?". North Shore times. Retrieved 13 March 2012. 
  15. ^ "Howard adviser to claim Coonan's seat in Senate". The Age (Australia). 26 August 2011. Retrieved 11 September 2011. 
  16. ^ "Howard flinches during Sinodinos maiden speech". ABC News (Australia). 23 November 2011. Retrieved 13 March 2012. 
  17. ^ "Opinion: Arthur Sinodinos". The Australian. 2012. Retrieved 7 June 2012. 
  18. ^ Coorey, Phillip (10 June 2008). "High honours for Howard and his right-hand man". The Sydney Morning Herald. 
  19. ^ "Board of Directors: Arthur Sinodinos AO". Mary MacKillop Foundation. 2012. Retrieved 13 March 2012. 

External Links[edit]

Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Helen Coonan
Senator for New South Wales
2011–
Incumbent
Political offices
Preceded by
David Bradbury
Assistant Treasurer
2013–2014
Succeeded by
TBD