Neil Currie

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Sir Neil Currie
CBE
Secretary of the Department of Supply
In office
1 November 1971 – 12 June 1974
Secretary of the Department of Manufacturing Industry
In office
12 June 1974 – 22 December 1975
Secretary of the Department of Industry and Commerce
In office
22 December 1975 – 7 May 1982
Personal details
Born Neil Smith Currie
(1926-08-20)20 August 1926
Mackay, Queensland
Died 30 July 1999(1999-07-30) (aged 72)
Batemans Bay, New South Wales
Nationality Australia Australian
Spouse(s) Geraldine Evelyn Dexter (m. 195199)
Children Deborah, Keith, Bruce and Janet
Parents George Alexander Currie
Alma mater University of Western Australia (BA)
Occupation Public servant

Sir Neil Smith Currie CBE (20 August 1926 – 30 July 1999) was a senior Australian public servant and policymaker.

Life and career[edit]

Neil Currie was born on 20 August 1926 in Mackay, Queensland.[1]

Currie began his Commonwealth public service career in 1948 as a cadet in the Department of External Affairs.[1] He graduated from his cadetship alongside Rowen Osborn, and Barrie Dexter.[2]

Currie married Geraldine Evelyn Dexter in Tokyo in 1951 during his first posting there.[1][3] Their engagement had been announced in March 1951.[4] Three of the couple's four children were born in Tokyo.[5]

He held several positions as a departmental head, namely Secretary of the Department of Supply between 1971 and 1974,[6] Secretary of the Department of Manufacturing Industry between 1974 and 1975,[7] and Secretary of the Department of Industry and Commerce.[8]

In 1982 then Foreign Minister Tony Street appointed Currie the Australian Ambassador to Japan.[9][5] His posting, until 1986, was at a time when Japan was Australia's biggest trading partner.[10]

Currie died in Batemans Bay on 30 July 1999, aged 72.[1]

Awards and honours[edit]

Currie was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1978.[11] In 1982 he was appointed a Knight Bachelor.[12]

In 2000, the Australia Japan Foundation established the Sir Neil Currie Australian Studies Award Program to commemorate Currie's life and his contribution to Australian-Japanese relations.[13]

A street in the Canberra suburb of Casey in 2009 was named Neil Currie Street in Currie's honour.[14]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Farquharson, John, Currie, Sir Neil Smith (1926–1999), Australian National University, archived from the original on 2 February 2014 
  2. ^ Beaumont, Joan; Waters, Christopher; Lowe, David; Woodard, Garry (2003). Ministers, Mandarins and Diplomats. Melbourne University Press. p. 51. 
  3. ^ "Shower Tea". The Age. Melbourne, Victoria. 28 March 1951. p. 5. 
  4. ^ "They are engaged". The West Australian. WA. 1 March 1951. p. 8. 
  5. ^ a b Bryant, John (12 June 1982). "A good week that got yet better". The Canberra Times. ACT. p. 2. 
  6. ^ CA 57: Department of Supply, Central Office, National Archives of Australia, retrieved 2 April 2014 
  7. ^ CA 1770: Department of Manufacturing Industry, Central Office, National Archives of Australia, retrieved 2 April 2014 
  8. ^ CA 1956: Department of Industry and Commerce [1], Central Office, National Archives of Australia, retrieved 2 April 2014 
  9. ^ "New Ambassador to Japan". The Canberra Times. ACT. 10 June 1982. p. 9. 
  10. ^ Fraser, Andrew; Warry, Catherine (14 August 1986). "Trade with Japan could grow, but with change". The Canberra Times. ACT. p. 10. 
  11. ^ Search Australian Honours: CURRIE, Neil Smith, Australian Government, archived from the original on 1 April 2014 
  12. ^ Search Australian Honours: CURRIE, Neil Smith, Australian Government, archived from the original on 1 April 2014 
  13. ^ Sir Neil Currie Australian Studies Awards, Australian Government, archived from the original on 11 February 2014 
  14. ^ Neil Currie Street, ACT Government Environment and Sustainable Development Directorate, archived from the original on 27 February 2014 
Government offices
Preceded by
Alan Cooley
Secretary of the Department of Supply
1971 – 1974
Succeeded by
Himself
as Secretary of the Department of Manufacturing Industry
Preceded by
Himself
as Secretary of the Department of Supply
Secretary of the Department of Manufacturing Industry
1974 – 1975
Succeeded by
Himself
as Secretary of the Department of Industry and Commerce
Preceded by
Frank Pryor
as Secretary of the Department of Secondary Industry
Preceded by
Himself
as Secretary of the Department of Manufacturing Industry
Secretary of the Department of Industry and Commerce (I)
1975 – 1982
Succeeded by
Tom Hayes
as Secretary of the Department of Industry and Commerce (II)
Diplomatic posts
Preceded by
James Plimsoll
Australian Ambassador to Japan
1982 – 1986
Succeeded by
Geoff Miller