For faster navigation, this Iframe is preloading the Wikiwand page for Kerry Chikarovski.

Kerry Chikarovski

Kerry Chikarovski
Leader of the Opposition of New South Wales
Elections: 1999
In office
8 December 1998 – 28 March 2002
PremierBob Carr
Preceded byPeter Collins
Succeeded byJohn Brogden
Member of the New South Wales Parliament
for Lane Cove
In office
25 May 1991 – 20 March 2003
Preceded byJohn Dowd
Succeeded byAnthony Roberts
Personal details
Kerry Anne Bartels

(1956-04-04) 4 April 1956 (age 68)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Political partyLiberal Party

Kerry Anne Chikarovski AM (née Bartels; 4 April 1956) is an Australian former politician who served as leader of the Liberal Party in New South Wales and Leader of the Opposition between 1998 and 2002, the first woman to hold the post.

Early life and career

Chikarovski was born in Sydney to Jill and former Willoughby Mayor Greg Bartels AM.[1] In 1964, her father took up a post working at the United Nations headquarters in New York, and she, along with her mother and three sisters, also moved, living there for the next five years. It was while living in New York that Chikarovski had a brief encounter with Robert F. Kennedy, which would influence her decision to go into politics years later.[2]

Upon returning to Sydney, Chikarovski finished her schooling at Monte Sant' Angelo Mercy College, in North Sydney. She completed a combined economics and law degree at the University of Sydney.[citation needed] While at university she joined the Economics Society, followed by the Law Society, where she was eventually elected as its first female president. She was also elected to the Board of the University of Sydney Union.[citation needed]

While at university, Chikarovski met her future husband, Kris Chikarovski, and they married in 1979. Following a brief career in private practice,[3] she went on to lecture part-time at the College of Law before entering parliament.[4]

Political career

Following the resignation of incumbent John Dowd, Chikarovski won pre-selection for the safe Liberal seat of Lane Cove in 1991, her primary competition for which was then MLC John Hannaford. In 1992, she was appointed Minister for Consumer Affairs and Assistant Minister for Education (3 July 1992 – 26 May 1993). During her time as Minister, Kerry facilitated national agreement to the Introduction of a Uniform Credit Code.

In 1993, she became Minister for Industrial Relations and Employment and established the department responsible for the Minister for The Status of Women (29 May 1993 – 4 April 1995). With her dual responsibilities of Industrial Relations and Women, Chikarovski oversaw the development and introduction of flexible working conditions for the public sector and the implementation of mentoring programs to encourage women to seek careers at the highest level of the NSW public service.[citation needed]

Chikarovski replaced Bruce Baird as Deputy Leader of the Liberal Party in December 1994 and held that post until the Liberal Party was defeated in 1995.[4]

Leader of the Opposition

On 8 December 1998, she replaced Peter Collins as leader,[4] and also held the position of Shadow Minister for the Arts, Ethnic Affairs and Women. In 1999 she lost the state election to Labor Premier Bob Carr in a landslide. In 2002, John Brogden, a member of her shadow cabinet, announced a challenge to her leadership. Despite the endorsement of Prime Minister John Howard – himself a Sydney-sider –[5] Chikarovski lost the leadership to Brogden by one vote.

At the March 2003 election, Chikarovski retired from parliament.[4]

Post political career

Following her resignation from Parliament in 2003, in 2004 she launched her co-authored autobiography, Chika.[6]

She is a passionate advocate for women in sport and is previous Trustee of the Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Trust.[7]

Chikarovski was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for "significant service to the Parliament of New South Wales, and to the community" in the 2021 Queen's Birthday Honours.[8]


Chikarovski also serves as a director on a number of sporting, government and not for profit boards:

She is the Chair of Road Safety Education.[12] Chikarovski is an Ambassador of the Australian Indigenous Education Foundation[13] and advisor to the Taronga Group.[14]


  1. ^ "Greg Bartels, mayor, NSW Liberal Party secretary and father of Kerry Chikarovski dies at the age of 88". The Daily Telegraph. 12 May 2015.
  2. ^ Priestley, Angela (2014). Women Who Seize the Moment. Simon and Schuster. ISBN 9780992453268.
  3. ^ "How Kerry Chikarovski improvised her political career". Women's Agenda. 12 June 2014.
  4. ^ a b c d "Mrs Kerry Anne Chikarovski (1956- )". Former members of the Parliament of New South Wales. Retrieved 1 May 2019.
  5. ^ "Chikarovski vows fight to the death". The Sydney Morning Herald. 26 March 2002. Retrieved 19 February 2010.
  6. ^ "Chik lit is no bodice-ripper". The Sydney Morning Herald. 11 September 2004.
  7. ^ Dumas, Daisy (23 July 2013). "Labour pains, too, for gossip mags". The Sydney Morning Herald.
  8. ^ "Ms Kerry Anne Chikarovski". It's An Honour. Retrieved 13 June 2021.
  9. ^ "'White feminists' blame colonisation for indigenous domestic violence". The Australian.
  10. ^ "Kerry Chikarovski's new board appointment". Women's Agenda. 23 July 2013. Retrieved 7 November 2013.
  11. ^ Morris, Linda (18 May 2013). "At home with Kerry Chikarovski". The Sydney Morning Herald.
  12. ^ "Appointment of new Chair to the Board of Road Safety Education Limited". RSE. 18 April 2014.
  13. ^ "Ambassadors - About". Australian Indigenous Education Foundation. Retrieved 4 November 2020.
  14. ^ "Ex-Mirvac exec Jonathan Hannam and Aura founder Avi Naidu launch property tech fund". Australian Financial Review. 30 March 2016.


New South Wales Legislative Assembly Preceded byJohn Dowd Member for Lane Cove 1991 – 2003 Succeeded byAnthony Roberts Political offices Preceded byPeter Collins Minister for Consumer Affairs 1992 – 1993 Succeeded byWendy Machin VacantTitle last held byBob Debus Assistant Minister for Education 1992 – 1993 VacantTitle next held byVictor Dominello Preceded byJohn Faheyas Minister for Further Education, Training and Employment Minister for Employment and Training 1992 – 1993 Succeeded byHerselfas Minister for Industrial Relations and Employment Preceded byJohn Hannafordas Minister for Industrial Relations Minister for Industrial Relations and Employment 1993 – 1995 Succeeded byJeff Shawas Minister for Industrial Relations Preceded byHerselfas Minister for Employment and Training New title Minister for the Status of Women 1993 – 1995 Succeeded byFaye Lo Po'as Minister for Women Preceded byPeter Collins Leader of the Opposition of New South Wales 1999 – 2002 Succeeded byJohn Brogden Party political offices Preceded byPeter Collins Leader of the Liberal Party of Australia (NSW Division) 1999 – 2002 Succeeded byJohn Brogden
{{bottomLinkPreText}} {{bottomLinkText}}
Kerry Chikarovski
Listen to this article

This browser is not supported by Wikiwand :(
Wikiwand requires a browser with modern capabilities in order to provide you with the best reading experience.
Please download and use one of the following browsers:

This article was just edited, click to reload
This article has been deleted on Wikipedia (Why?)

Back to homepage

Please click Add in the dialog above
Please click Allow in the top-left corner,
then click Install Now in the dialog
Please click Open in the download dialog,
then click Install
Please click the "Downloads" icon in the Safari toolbar, open the first download in the list,
then click Install

Install Wikiwand

Install on Chrome Install on Firefox
Don't forget to rate us

Tell your friends about Wikiwand!

Gmail Facebook Twitter Link

Enjoying Wikiwand?

Tell your friends and spread the love:
Share on Gmail Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Buffer

Our magic isn't perfect

You can help our automatic cover photo selection by reporting an unsuitable photo.

This photo is visually disturbing This photo is not a good choice

Thank you for helping!

Your input will affect cover photo selection, along with input from other users.


Get ready for Wikiwand 2.0 ๐ŸŽ‰! the new version arrives on September 1st! Don't want to wait?