Adam Giles

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The Honourable
Adam Giles
Adam Giles Northern Territory Chief Minister.jpg
10th Chief Minister of the Northern Territory
Assumed office
14 March 2013
Monarch Elizabeth II
Deputy Dave Tollner (2013–14)
Peter Chandler (2014–15)
Willem Westra van Holthe (2015–present)
Preceded by Terry Mills
Treasurer Dave Tollner
Member of the Northern Territory Parliament
for Braitling
Assumed office
9 August 2008
Preceded by Loraine Braham
Personal details
Born Adam Graham Romer
(1973-04-10)10 April 1973
Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia
Political party Country Liberal Party
Residence Alice Springs

Adam Graham Giles (born 10 April 1973[1]) is an Australian politician who is the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory and Leader of the Country Liberal Party since March 2013. He became a Country Liberal Party member of the Northern Territory Legislative Assembly in 2008, representing the electorate of Braitling. Giles is the first head of government in Australia to have Indigenous Australian ancestry. Giles has led a minority government since July 2015.

Early life and public service career[edit]

Giles was born Adam Graham Romer in the Blue Mountains, west of Sydney. His mother is Anglo-Saxon and his father was descended from the Kamilaroi people through Giles' grandmother. His grandmother discovered that she had indigenous ancestry during the 1980s, but has said she did not regard herself as Aboriginal.[2] When his parents split up, Adam's mother remarried, and he took his surname from his stepfather.[3]

Giles studied accounting and real estate after leaving high school, working in property management before moving into public housing management for the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC). He then moved to Canberra to work in the Australian Public Service as a social and economic policy advisor for the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet and Department of Employment and Workplace Relations,[4] and was the Liberal Party candidate for Fraser in the 2004 federal election.[5]

Political career[edit]

As a member of the Northern Territory's Indigenous Economic Taskforce, Giles travelled and worked throughout the Territory before settling in Alice Springs.[6] There he stood as a Country Liberal Party candidate for Lingiari at the 2007 federal election.[7] He was elected to the Alice Springs-based seat of Braitling in the 2008 Northern Territory election, winning with 2,052 primary votes, or with 70% (2,475 votes) after preferences were distributed.[8]

Following the 2012 Northern Territory election, Giles became the Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Local Government.

On 13 March 2013, Adam Giles replaced Terry Mills as leader of the Country Liberal Party while Mills was on a trade mission in Japan.[9] Giles was sworn in as Chief Minister on 14 March, becoming the first indigenous head of government of an Australian state or territory.[10][11]

When the CLP introduced mandatory alcohol rehabilitation for recidivist problem drinkers to replace a banned drinker register, Giles dismissed critics of the policy as "lefty welfare-orientated people".[12]

On 2 February 2015, Willem Westra van Holthe challenged Giles in a leadership spill motion and was elected leader by the party room in a late night vote conducted by phone.[13] However, Giles refused to resign as Chief Minister following the vote. On 3 February, ABC News reported that officials were preparing an instrument for Giles' removal by the Administrator. The swearing-in of Westra van Holthe, which had been scheduled for 11:00 local time (01:30 UTC), was delayed.[14] After a meeting of the parliamentary wing of the Country Liberal Party, Giles announced that he would remain as party leader and Chief Minister, and that Westra van Holthe would be his deputy.[15]

After further defections, numbers fell to minority government status in July 2015.[16][17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Master's apprentice gets lessons in campaigning". The Canberra Times. 24 September 2004. Mr Giles was born on April 10, 1973 
  2. ^ "Row over heritage of NT Chief Minister Adam Giles". The Australian. 14 September 2013. 
  3. ^ "Maiden Speeches" (PDF). Northern Territory Parliament. October 2012. 
  4. ^ Finnane, Kieran (6 September 2007). "CDEP assets likely to go to IBA trust". Alice Springs News. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  5. ^ "ACT Division – Fraser". Virtual tally room. Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  6. ^ Lewis, B. C. (20 June 2013). "Adam Giles' journey from Blaxland High to running the Northern Territory". Blue Mountains Gazette. Retrieved 9 August 2014. 
  7. ^ "NT Division – Lingiari". Virtual tally room. Australian Electoral Commission. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  8. ^ "Braitling – Northern Territory Votes 2012". ABC News. Australia. 3 September 2012. Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  9. ^ "Mills dumped as Giles takes top Territory job". ABC News (Australia). 13 March 2013. Retrieved 13 March 2013. 
  10. ^ Everingham, Sara (14 March 2013). "Indigenous politician Adam Giles to replace Terry Mills as NT Chief Minister". AM (ABC Radio) (Australia). Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  11. ^ "Giles denies plot to overthrow Mills". ABC News (Australia). 14 March 2013. Retrieved 14 March 2013. 
  12. ^ Fletcher, James (16 October 2013). "Forced rehab: A solution for Australia's grog addicts?". BBC News. 
  13. ^ Dunlevie, James (3 February 2015). "Adam Giles dumped as NT chief minister in late-night coup, Willem Westra van Holthe elected leader". ABC News (Australia). Retrieved 3 February 2015. 
  14. ^ "Northern Territory Chief Minister Adam Giles refuses to quit after being dumped in a late-night coup". ABC News (Australia). 3 February 2015. Retrieved 14 February 2015. 
  15. ^ "Adam Giles remains NT chief minister". SBS News. Retrieved 3 February 2015. 
  16. ^ Kezia Purick quits Northern Territory Country Liberals party, Government loses one-seat majority: ABC 20 July 2015
  17. ^ Adam Giles would 'love to go to an early election' after Kezia Purick resigns Country Liberals party: ABC 20 July 2015

External links[edit]

Northern Territory Legislative Assembly
Preceded by
Loraine Braham
Member for Braitling
Political offices
Preceded by
Terry Mills
Chief Minister of the Northern Territory
Preceded by
John Elferink
Treasurer of the Northern Territory
Party political offices
Preceded by
Terry Mills
Leader of the Country Liberal Party in the Northern Territory