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Julia Gillard AC (b. 1961), was the 27th Prime Minister of Australia. Born in Wales, she came to Adelaide with her parents at age five. She joined the Labor Party while studying at the University of Adelaide, moving to Melbourne in 1982 for a role with the Australian Union of Students. Having completed her studies in Arts and Law at the University of Melbourne, she joined the industrial law specialist Slater & Gordon in 1987. After unsuccessfully contesting a Senate seat in the 1996 Federal election, she took up the position of Chief of Staff to then Victorian Opposition Leader, John Brumby. She was elected to the House of Representatives in 1998 and in 2001 entered shadow cabinet, subsequently serving as Shadow Minister for portfolios including Health and Employment and Workplace Relations. Elected Deputy Leader of the Opposition in late 2006, she became Australia’s first female Deputy Prime Minister following Labor’s victory in the 2007 Federal Election, and in June 2010 defeated Kevin Rudd in a leadership ballot, becoming Australia’s first female Prime Minister. On 26 June 2013 she lost the leadership in a spill to Rudd; she resigned the following day, and announced that she would not contest the seat of Lalor in the 2013 federal election. In her farewell speech, she cited the introduction of a price on carbon, disability care, education reforms, and the Royal Commission on institutional child abuse as among her most significant achievements as Prime Minister.

Collection: National Portrait Gallery, Canberra
Gift of Peter Brew-Bevan 2013
Accession number: 2013.69