Damian Drum

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Damian Drum
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Murray
Assumed office
2 July 2016
Preceded by Sharman Stone
Member of the Victorian Legislative Council for the North Western Province
In office
30 November 2002 – 31 October 2006
Member of the Victorian Legislative Council for the Northern Victoria Region
In office
25 November 2006 – 26 May 2016
Minister for Sports and Veterans Affairs
In office
17 March 2014 – 4 December 2014
Premier Dennis Napthine
Preceded by Hugh Delahunty
Succeeded by John Eren
Personal details
Born Damian Kevin Drum
(1960-07-28) 28 July 1960 (age 56)
Shepparton, Victoria, Australia
Political party National Party
Website www.damiandrum.com.au

Australian rules football career
Personal information
Original team(s) Congupna
Height 180 cm (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 80 kg (176 lb)
Playing career1
Years Club Games (Goals)
1982–1989 Geelong 63 (34)
Coaching career3
Years Club Games (W–L–D)
1999–2001 Fremantle 53 (13–40–0)
1 Playing statistics correct to the end of 1989.
3 Coaching statistics correct as of 2001.
Sources: AFL Tables, AustralianFootball.com

Damian Kevin Drum (born 28 July 1960) is an Australian politician who has represented Murray in the Australian House of Representatives since 2016 as a member of The Nationals.

Drum is the former member for the North-West Region and later the Northern Victoria Region in the Legislative Council of Victoria between 2002 and 2016; and served as Minister for Sports and Veterans Affairs in the Napthine Ministry from March to December 2014.[1]

He is also a former Australian rules footballer and coach, most notably as senior coach of the Fremantle Football Club in the Australian Football League from 1999 to 2001. He turned to a life in politics after being sacked as Fremantle's coach during the 2001 season.

Early life[edit]

Drum was born in Shepparton. After graduating from high school, he became a carpenter and joiner, running his own shed construction business for several years. At the same time, he embarked on a football career, and was drafted to the then-VFL's Geelong Football Club in 1981. Over the next nine years, he played 63 games for Geelong. While playing football, he also operated his own business selling sheds and garages. He retired from the VFL at the end of 1990, and joined Victorian Football Association club Werribee in 1991.[2]

Coaching career[edit]

In 1993, he quit his business and took up a coaching position with Port Melbourne in the VFA, leading the club to a Grand Final loss against his former club Werribee. In 1994, he moved to Sydney, taking up a position as the assistant coach of the Sydney Swans Australian Football League club, under coach and former player Ron Barassi. After five years in this role, Drum was approached by Fremantle, who had not renewed the contract of their first coach, Gerard Neesham. Drum had been one of the most highly anticipated coaching recruits of the season, and some were surprised that he signed with the struggling Dockers. He had been expected to sign with the Collingwood Football Club the previous year, but the deal had fallen through.

Drum coached Fremantle for three seasons, during which the side suffered from a lack of success. In his first season, the club finished 15th (second-last), though there was some slight improvement in his second season, in which Fremantle won several high-profile games; still, the club struggled, and finished twelfth. However, it was the 2001 season, in which Fremantle lost their first nine games of the season, that sealed Drum's fate. He was dismissed after the club's Round 9 loss to the Sydney Swans, and was replaced by former Fremantle player and inaugural club captain Ben Allan,[3] who didn't fare much better, with the Dockers still winless after Round 17 in a 22-round season.

After losing the Fremantle job, Drum moved back to Victoria, and took up a position as coach of the Bendigo Diggers team in the Victorian Football League. The situation was similar to Fremantle – the Diggers, finished the season winless, with a single draw against the Murray Kangaroos.[4] At the end of the season, Drum decided to retire from football and move into politics, successfully seeking Nationals pre-selection for the Victorian Legislative Council seat of North Western Province at the 2002 state election.[5]

Political career[edit]

Victorian parliament[edit]

Drum was first elected to parliament in 2002 amidst the Labor Party landslide, in which many seats across the state fell to the minority government, and numerous shadow ministers lost their seats. Drum was elected despite the losses sustained by the conservative parties, with the Liberal Party losing a net total of 26 seats whilst the Nationals suffered a net loss of only one seat.[6] The Liberal and National parties ended their coalition in 2000 and campaigned separately.

The demise of the coalition meant that the Nationals had numerous portfolios to fill in order to replace all those that had been occupied by the larger Liberal Party. Despite being a newly elected member with no previous political experience, Drum found himself Deputy Leader of the National Party in the Legislative Council,[7] party Whip, and Shadow Minister for Youth Affairs, Education Services, Sport, Recreation, Racing, Consumer Affairs and the Commonwealth Games. Drum has also been a member of the Environment and Natural Resources Committee since 2003.

For the 2006 election the Upper House of the Victorian parliament underwent major structural changes. Drum's previous seat of North-West Region was replaced by the much larger Northern Victoria Region and proportional rather than preferential voting. Drum was easily elected with a quota in his own right and was the only National Party member for the region.[8]

Drum was appointed Minister for Sports and Veterans Affairs in the Napthine coalition government in March 2014, serving until the defeat of the coalition government that December.[1]

Federal parliament[edit]

On 11 April 2016, the Nationals announced that Drum had been preselected to contest the federal seat of Murray at the 2016 federal election.[9] He resigned from the Victorian Legislative Council on 26 May, prior to the closing date for nomination of candidates for the federal election.[10] The seat was held by the Liberals Sharman Stone who announced her retirement on 26 March 2016,[11] with a resultant three-cornered-contest in which Drum defeated his Liberal opponent, Duncan McGauchie,[12][13] son of Donald McGauchie.[14]


  1. ^ a b Willingham, Richard (13 March 2014). "Premier Denis Napthine announces fresh frontbench". The Age. Retrieved 13 March 2014. 
  2. ^ Barrett, Damian (6 April 1991). "Grand final action replay". Herald-Sun News-Pictorial. Melbourne, VIC. p. 67. 
  3. ^ Hinds, Richard (31 May 2001). "Drum deserved a more dignified exit". Sydney Morning Herald. 
  4. ^ West, Luke (16 September 2010). "Diggers' days relived ... Diggers-Bombers team of the decade". 
  5. ^ Halliday, Claire (17 November 2002). "Good sports try their hands at a new game". The Sunday Age. 
  6. ^ "Former AFL coach saves Nats". The Age. Melbourne. 9 December 2002. 
  7. ^ Baker, Richard (10 December 2002). "Nats get some coaching tips". The Age. 
  8. ^ Colebatch, Tim (13 December 2006). "Preferences trip up all but the DLP". The Age. 
  9. ^ "Damian Drum wins Nationals pre-selection for Victorian seat of Murray". ABC News. 11 April 2016. Retrieved 11 April 2016. 
  10. ^ "DOCUMENTS RELATING TO THE CALLING OF THE DOUBLE DISSOLUTION ELECTION FOR 2 JULY 2016" (PDF). Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia. 8 May 2016. Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 May 2016. 
  11. ^ "Sharman Stone: Liberal MP for Murray retires from politics after 20 years". ABC News. Australia. 26 March 2016. Retrieved 26 March 2016. 
  12. ^ "McGauchie concedes, Drum wins Murray". The Weekly Times. 13 July 2016. Retrieved 23 July 2016. 
  13. ^ "Murray, VIC". Tally Room, 2016 Federal Election. Australian Electoral Commission. 23 July 2016. Retrieved 23 July 2016. 
  14. ^ Wallace, Rick (16 April 2016). "Duncan McGauchie wins preselection to replace Sharman Stone". The Australian. Retrieved 23 July 2016. 

External links[edit]

Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Sharman Stone
Member for Murray