Louise Asher

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The Honourable
Louise Asher
Minister for Tourism and Major Events
Minister for Innovation, Services and Small Business
In office
2 December 2010 – 29 November 2014
Premier Ted Baillieu (2010–2013)
Denis Napthine (2013–2014)
Preceded by Tim Holding
Member of the Victorian Parliament
for Brighton
Assumed office
Preceded by Alan Stockdale
Personal details
Born (1956-06-26) 26 June 1956 (age 60)
Melbourne, Australia
Political party Liberal Party of Australia
Alma mater University of Melbourne
Monash University
Profession Teacher
Website Parliament web page
Party web page

Louise Asher (born 26 June 1956) is an Australian politician. She has been a Liberal Party of Australia member of the Victorian Legislative Assembly since 1999, representing the electorate of Brighton; she previously served in the Victorian Legislative Council from 1992 to 1999 as member for Monash Province. Asher was Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party from 2006 to 2014, and served as a minister in the Kennett, Baillieu and Napthine governments.

Early life[edit]

Asher joined the Young Liberal Movement in 1976 and served as state president in 1982. Asher also studied at both Melbourne and Monash University completing a Master of Arts and a Bachelor of Education and was a secondary teacher during the 1980s before becoming an advisor to New South Wales minister Peter Collins.

Political career[edit]

At the 1992 state election Asher was elected to the Victorian Legislative Council as the member for Monash Province. After the 1996 election she served as Minister for Small Business and Minister for Tourism. An ally of Premier Jeff Kennett, Asher had the opportunity to transfer into the Legislative Assembly in her local district of Brighton after the retirement of Alan Stockdale. However she faced a bruising pre-selection against future Senator Mitch Fifield but she prevailed 33 votes to 18. [1]

Louise Asher was involved in arrangements for the inaugural Melbourne Formula One race in 1996.

While Asher did enter the Legislative Assembly as the member for Brighton at the 1999 election the Liberal Party unexpectedly lost government. However Asher successfully contested the deputy leadership and also served as Shadow Treasurer. However, with the Liberals trailing badly in the polls in 2002 she and party leader Dennis Napthine, who was also allied to Jeff Kennett, were replaced by Robert Doyle and Phil Honeywood as leader and deputy leader respectively. After the Liberals devastating defeat at the 2002 election continued to serve on the opposition frontbench, serving as Shadow minister for Manufacturing and Exports and later as Shadow Minister for Industry and Employment and Shadow Minister for Major Projects.

In April 2006 Honeywood announced his retirement from politics and resigned his position as Deputy Leader. In order to restore party unity and stabilise his own leadership, Doyle offered Asher the deputy leadership, which she accepted.[1] However this move was not enough for Doyle to save his own leadership, and the following month he resigned and was replaced by Kennett supporter Ted Baillieu.

Asher was Minister for Tourism and Major Events as well as Minister for Innovation, Services and Small Business since 2 December 2010 in the Baillieu and Napthine Ministries. She resigned as deputy leader following the 2014 state election and was replaced by David Hodgett.

Asher married to former National Party MLC Ron Best on 10 February 2001.


External links[edit]

Victorian Legislative Council
Preceded by
Reg Macey
Member for Monash Province
Succeeded by
Andrea Coote
Victorian Legislative Assembly
Preceded by
Alan Stockdale
Member for Brighton
Political offices
Preceded by
Vin Heffernan
Minister for Small Business
Succeeded by
Marsha Thomson
Preceded by
Pat McNamara
Minister for Tourism
Succeeded by
John Pandazopoulos
Preceded by
Joe Helper
as Minister for Small Business
Minister for Innovation, Services and Small Business
Preceded by
Gavin Jennings
as Minister for Innovation
Preceded by
Tim Holding
Minister for Tourism and Major Events
Party political offices
Preceded by
Phil Honeywood
Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party in Victoria
Succeeded by
David Hodgett