|Secretary of the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet|
1 February 1975 – 30 September 1976
|Preceded by||Sir John Bunting|
|Succeeded by||Alan Carmody|
|Born||John Laurence Menadue
|Spouse(s)||Cynthia née Trowbridge (d.)|
|Alma mater||University of Adelaide|
Menadue was born in South Australia in 1935, the son of a Methodist minister and was raised in that faith (he later converted to Catholicism). He attended 12 schools and lived in 17 houses by the age of 22. He graduated from the University of Adelaide in 1956 with a Bachelor of Economics.
From March 1960 to October 1967 Menadue was Private Secretary to Gough Whitlam, Deputy Leader of the Australian Labor Party and of the Opposition in the federal parliament (Whitlam became Leader in February 1967). He then moved into the private sector for seven years as General Manager, News Limited, Sydney, publisher of The Australian.
Public service and diplomatic career
Menadue was head of the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet from 1974 to 1976, working to Prime Ministers Whitlam and Malcolm Fraser. He was closely involved in the events of 11 November 1975, when Whitlam was dismissed.
He was Australian Ambassador to Japan from 1976 to 1980.
Menadue returned to Australia in 1980 to take up the position of Secretary, Department of Immigration and Ethnic Affairs. In March 1983, he became Secretary of the Department of the Special Minister of State. He was appointed Secretary of the Department of Trade in December 1983.
Menadue was Chief Executive Officer of Qantas from June 1986 to July 1989. He was a Director of Telstra from December 1994 to October 1996, a Director of NSW State Rail Authority from 1996 to 1999, and Chairman of the Australia Japan Foundation from 1991 to 1998.
Menadue is an adviser to several companies. He chaired the NSW Health Council, which reported to the NSW Minister for Health in March 2000 on changes to health services in NSW. He also chaired the SA Generational Health Review which reported to the South Australian Minister for Human Services in May 2003.
In October 1999, Menadue published his autobiography Things You Learn Along the Way. He was the founding Chair of NewMatilda.com, an independent weekly online newsletter which was launched in August 2004. He is now chair of the public-interest think tank, the Centre for Policy Development.
Menadue was made an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 1985 for public service. In 2003 he was awarded the Centenary Medal 'for service to Australian society through public service leadership'. In 1997, he received the Japanese Imperial Award, The Grand Cordon of the Order of the Sacred Treasure (Kun-itto Zuiho-sho), the highest honour awarded to foreigners who are not head of state or head of government.
Menadue's first wife Cynthia née Trowbridge died of cancer at the age of 49. He remarried, and has four children and ten grand children.
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (April 2009)|
- John Menadue blog
- Centre for Policy Development
- John Menadue on ABC Radio PM
- Profile on Whitlam Institute