Don Day

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The Honourable
Don Day
Personal details
Born (1924-02-19)19 February 1924
Melbourne, Victoria
Died 18 May 2010(2010-05-18) (aged 86)
New South Wales
Political party Australian Labor Party
Spouse(s) Marie Davis
Children Jenny, Bill and Suzanne
Occupation Motor vehicle dealer and cattle grazier
Website NSW Parliamentary weboage

Donald "Don" Day (19 February 1924 – 18 May 2010) was an Australian politician and member of the New South Wales Legislative Assembly representing the electorates of Casino (1971–1981) and Clarence (1981–1984) for the Australian Labor Party. Day held a range of Ministerial responsibilities in the government of Neville Wran.

Early years and background[edit]

Day was born in Melbourne, Victoria. His father, Alfred Day, was an engineer. Referring to his early years, Day was quoted as:[1]

I grew up in the metropolitan area of Melbourne during the depression. My father deserted us when we were kids, so we had a fairly rough upbringing; my mother had to bring up three of us without the benefit of any deserted wives' pension. We scrabbled very hard and that sort of builds a fire in your guts. It leaves a mark on you really that never leaves you. The scars are there from charity handouts and all those rather soul-destroying experiences. That's why I'll always be Labor.

He was educated at Swinburne Technical College and trained as a fitter and turner. In 1941 he joined the Australian Imperial Forces as a private and later transferred to the Royal Australian Air Force to become a catalina pilot where he met and married Marie Davis.[2]

Following his war service Day and his wife settled in her home town of Maclean and established a car and farm equipment dealership. He joined the Labor party at age 28 and served in local government.[3]

Political career[edit]

Day won Labor pre-selection and was subsequently elected as the member for Casino at the 1971 state election; the first time the seat had been held by Labor since the establishment of single member constituencies in 1927.[2] He retained this seat until it was abolished in a redistribution prior to the 1981 state election. He subsequently contested and won the seat of Clarence. With the election of the Wran government in 1976, Day, one of the few rural based elected members of the Labor Party, became the Minister for Decentralisation and Development and Minister for Primary Industries. He continued in rural industry portfolios in the Wran government until his retirement prior to the 1984 state election.[3]


  1. ^ Hallam, Jack (1983). The untold story: Labor in rural NSW. Allen & Unwin. p. 144. ISBN 0-86861-167-0. 
  2. ^ a b "Death of the Honourable Donald Day, a former member of the Legislative Assembly and a former Minister of the Crown". Full Day Hansard Transcript: Legislative Assembly. Parliament of New South Wales. 23 June 2010. Retrieved 1 January 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "The Hon. Donald DAY (1924–2010)". Members of Parliament. Parliament of New South Wales. Retrieved 20 May 2010. 
Parliament of New South Wales
New district Member for Casino
District abolished
Preceded by
Matt Singleton
Member for Clarence
Succeeded by
Ian Causley
Political offices
Preceded by
Milton Morris
Minister for Decentralisation and Development and Minister for Primary Industries
Succeeded by
Jack Hallam
Preceded by
Bruce Cowan
Minister for Agriculture
Succeeded by
Jack Hallam
Preceded by
Jack Hallam
Minister for Industrial Development and Minister for Decentralisation
Succeeded by
George Paciullo
Preceded by
Neville Wran
Minister for Mineral Resources
Succeeded by
Ken Gabb