Let Australians Choose an Australian Head of State
 
 

What We're Campaigning For

The Australian Republic Movement believes everyone who leads Australia and Australians should state allegiance to our people and to our place. Australia is unique - our land and our society are distinctive in the world.  Our nation's great achievement is the creation of a democratic, multicultural, egalitarian society where everyone is equal no matter their family, faith or national background. We should never take this for granted and we should always try to improve it. This is why we should replace the foreign monarchy in our Constitution with an Australian as Australia's head of state.

Our head of state should be a patriotic, democratic person who embodies service to our country and its people. Our head of state should be an Australian chosen by Australians, not a foreign monarch who inherits the job. It is fundamentally unfair, undemocratic and undignified for Australia's democracy to be subject to a foreign monarchy.

The Australian Republic Movement is building an inclusive, member-controlled, volunteer-led campaign calling for a national vote by 2020 so Australia can decide our future and so Australians can have a head of state of our own.

We have made great progress and we have great hope - but campaigns matter and change is never inevitable - that is why it is so important that you join now.

Still have questions about the campaign? Read our FAQ here.

 

 

Our Plan To Achieve A Republic By 2022

 

 

Statement by the National Director, Michael Cooney

I believe Australia should become a republic with an Australian as our head of state.  Here's why.

I believe that every one who holds public office in Australia should be an Australian citizen. I believe that everyone who holds a position of authority in Australia should be chosen by Australians. I believe that everyone who leads Australia and Australians should state allegiance to our people and to this place.

It is just not acceptable that any public position in our country be hereditary. The whole promise of Australia is that here we don't care who your Mum and Dad were.

It is just not acceptable that any public position in our country be subject to a religious test. Our head of state should not be the head of the Church of England.

It is just not acceptable that the highest place in our constitution be reserved to the descendants of imperial privilege. Our next head of state should not be promised as a bequest in a will dividing an inheritance of $500 million.

A society in which people believe that they may be better off than someone else, but they are no better than someone else, does not curtsy or bow.

If our system isn't broken, it's clearly breaking. Australian public life has problems no King of England can solve for us - problems we can only solve ourselves.

We desperately need to restore a balance between power and prestige, between dignity and efficiency, between the partisan government and the democratic state. We should have a robust public square and there are worse things than Question Time and doorstops. But in the absence of an Australian as our Head of State that is all we have.

We need an Australian as our head of state who can go to Beersheba on the centenary of Chauvel's charge while the PM stays at home and sorts out scandals and does some reading of his briefs. A person above politics who can make a statement to the nation on New Year's Day or a National Day without someone in her ear saying "get the line up".

And we desperately need not just symbols of the best nation of our imagination - but democratic, inclusive, patriotic institutions that give all Australians a voice and to lend every Australian an ear.

That means we need an Australian as our head of state. 

Here's how.

In 2020 Australians should be asked two simple questions in a national vote: Do you want Australia to have an Australian as our head of state? How do you want Australia's head of state to be chosen? In that vote, the ARM plans to campaign for a yes vote on the first and pledges to be bound by the outcome of the second.

With those two questions answered, a referendum question should be prepared and put to the people in 2022.

A referendum to change our politics, to modernise our constitution, to remove alien traditions of heredity and prejudice. A vote to have an Australian as our head of state and to become an Australian Republic.

Sign up. Join up. See you on the campaign trail.

---

Michael Cooney

ARM National Director

17 February 2018


 

Who we are

As a member-driven organisation, we rely on the support of a volunteer board of directors and Executive. Our paid up and passionate members elect our leaders and control our campaign. This is your movement.

Our Executive

 
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Peter FitzSimons, Chair

Peter FitzSimons is a journalist with the Sydney Morning Herald and Sun-Herald, and a busy events and motivational speaker.

He is the author of over twenty-seven books, including Tobruk, Kokoda, Batavia, Eureka, Ned Kelly, Gallipoli and biographies of Douglas Mawson, Nancy Wake‚ Kim Beazley‚ Nick Farr-Jones‚ Les Darcy, Steve Waugh and John Eales, and is one of Australia's biggest selling non-fiction authors of the last fifteen years. 

Peter was named a Member of the Order of Australia for service to literature as a biographer, sports journalist and commentator, and to the community through contributions to conservation, disability care, social welfare and sporting organisations. 

He lives with his wife, Lisa Wilkinson, and their three children in Sydney.

 
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Michael Cooney, National Director and CEO

Michael was appointed National Director and CEO of the Australian Republic Movement in May 2017, after serving as the Executive Director of the Chifley Research Centre for three years.

Before that Michael had been Speechwriter to Prime Minister the Hon Julia Gillard MP, the founding Policy Director at Per Capita and Principal Policy Adviser to Federal Labor Leaders Kim Beazley and Mark Latham. He is the author of The Gillard Project (Penguin, 2015).

Michael lives with his family in Canberra, where he was born and grew up.

Read Michael's statement here.

 
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Michelle Wood, Senior Deputy Chair

Michelle Wood has spent over 15 years working in public affairs, marketing and communications both in Australia and overseas. As the Australian Institute of Company Directors' General Manager, Marketing and Communications Michelle has responsibility for member communications, including Company Director Magazine and the Boardroom Report, creative services, brand and advertising.

Prior to joining AICD, Michelle was the Director of Communication at the Macquarie Graduate School of Management and also held communication roles with the University of Sydney, the Australian Mission to the United Nations in New York, the Minister for Water in NSW, National Geographic and Austrade.

Michelle is Deputy-Chair of the Australian Republican Movement and executive director of the Sydney Salon- a speaker series for business and academic leaders. She is completing a PhD in business (governance) at MGSM, has a Masters of Research (business), as well as Bachelor of Media from Macquarie University.

 
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Tully Fletcher, Treasurer/Secretary

Tully Fletcher is a senior adviser to the Attorney-General in the Victorian State Government. He was previously an Associate to a Judge of the Supreme Court of Victoria, an adviser in the Office of the Vice-Chancellor at the Australian National University, and president of a student union. He's been one of the Movement's executive directors since 2014.

Tully is an experienced board director, campaigner and strategist, and an active member of the Australian Labor Party. He’s in it to win it, working to rebuild the Movement into a first-rate campaign for an Australian head of state.

Tully believes ending our cringeworthy foreign monarchy has been overdue since The Invincibles won the Ashes 4-0 in 1948.

 
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Piers Grove, Junior Deputy Chair

Piers is an entrepreneur, activist and producer. 

Piers is the co-founder and Executive Director of EnergyLab and sits on the investment committee of the Early Stage Clean Energy Fund. He serves as a founding director of Climate KIC Australia and AcceleratEnergy, and is a Governor of WWF-Australia.

He is also a film and television producer who works on documentary and comedy projects. He has produced 80+ hours of original content for ABC, Nine, Foxtel and SBS. His current commercial work includes roles with Pangea Collective, Three Rivers and Matilda Films.

Other roles include Chair of the Bernie Banton Foundation.

Our National Committee

 
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Stephen Dametto, NSW Branch Convenor

Stephen has been a long-time member of the ARM and has been the NSW Convener since November 2009 having previously served on the NSW committee.

Stephen is currently a Detective Superintendent with the Australian Federal Police. He is also a Chartered Accountant and a qualified lawyer and holds qualifications in Management. Stephen is currently completing a PhD in law at the University of NSW. His research will evaluate the effectiveness of international measures to counter terrorism financing.

Stephen is also a director of the Sydney Salon, a non-for-profit organisation which encourages thought leadership through an open and democratic discussion of big ideas.

Australia is a unique and special country. Stephen wants Australia to become a republic because he would like to see his children have the opportunity to be Australia’s head of State, for Australia to be truly self-determining and to allow Australia to flourish to its full potential. He hopes that his current position as NSW Convener goes a small way to achieving this.

He is married with 3 children.

 
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Jessica Lindell, Victorian Branch Convenor and General Member

Jessica is a strategic communications and government professional with diverse international experience in government and the private sector. 

After a brief stint as a political adviser in Westminster, she became involved in the London branch of the ARM, before returning home to Melbourne to continue her advocacy for progressive change.

As a proud republican, Jessica wants to encourage more women to join our movement and will campaign actively for an Australian head-of-state.

 
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Andrew Fraser, Queensland Branch Convenor

Andrew Fraser is a former journalist who was Queensland bureau chief of a national newspaper and a member of the Federal Parliamentary Press Gallery during the Hawke-Keating era. He was a political adviser and speechwriter to several Queensland governments and is now a flaneur as well as having two adult sons, both of whom are firm republicans. He believes that an Australian republic is inevitable – will Australia still be a constitutional monarchy in 100 years time? Probably not. So let’s get on with it and make it sooner rather than later.

 
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Megan Allan, WA Branch Convenor

 
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Aaron Hill, South Australian Branch Convenor

Aaron Hill has been a republican since Year 2, when he took up the fight for an Australian head of state in a class debate, going on to join the Australian Republican Movement a few years later. Aaron is now the South Australian Convenor of the Australian Republican Movement and a member of the National Committee.

Aaron has extensive experience advising in economics and public policy for Commonwealth and state governments, and is now a director in economics for a major consulting firm.

Aaron attended public schools in Adelaide's north and north-eastern suburbs before graduating from the University of Adelaide with degrees in law and commerce. Aaron is married to Stephanie and is a tragically passionate supporter of the Adelaide Crows and Central Districts Football Clubs.

 
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Angela Wilson, Tasmanian Branch Convenor

A passionate Australian Republican from a very young age, Angela began campaigning for a republic at high school by giving a speech to a local service club, horrifying the audience by holding an Australian flag with the Union Jack covered over!  

After this inauspicious beginning, Angela went on to do a combined honours degree in Gender Studies and Political Science, and became Women’s Adviser to a former Tasmanian Minister for Women. This led to almost a decade of working in political offices in Tasmania and Victoria.

After almost ten years working in politics Angela founded Awake Consulting, which specialises in marketing, PR and events management. She is also on the board of the Tasmanian Women's Legal Service, and is still annoyed that she was a couple of years too young to vote in the 1999 referendum. 

 
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Brendan Forde, ACT Branch Convenor

Brendan Forde is the ACT Convenor of the Australian Republican Movement and a member of the National Committee.

He is an Organiser with the Professionals Australia, an author and an academic whose PhD research focuses on political participation and grassroots politics in rural China.

 
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Dominic Gomez, NT Branch Convenor

Dom is a born and bred Territorian, and a passionate supporter of NT Statehood and an Australian Republic. In his spare time he enjoys fishing and his life goal (apart from seeing an Australian as Australia's head of state) is to catch a fish.

 
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Matt Martyn-Jones, General Member

A long-time supporter of the ARM, Matt has 20 years’ experience in media, government and the corporate sector. 

 
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Jason Yat-Sen Li, General Member

Jason been a passionate republican since the establishment of the ARM. He was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention and was a member of the Yes Committee during the 1999 referendum.

He has over 15 years’ experience in law, corporate advisory, general management and politics.  Jason was Head of China Strategy and Head of Sustainability for Insurance Australia Group.  Before that, he was an M&A lawyer with Davis Polk & Wardwell in New York and Corrs Chambers Westgarth in Australia as well as having worked for the United Nations in the Netherlands.  Jason is a Director of the George Institute for Global Health, a leading global medical research organisation and has been Vice Chairman of the Australia-China Chamber of Commerce in Beijing.  

 
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Alice Crawford, General Member

Alice joins the National Committee having served as Deputy Convenor of the Victorian Chapter of the ARM in 2016.

Alice is an enthusiastic campaigner, having worked on presidential elections in France and the United States, and a bunch of local, state and federal elections in Australia.

Alice is very excited to be joining the National Committee when the ARM is on the cusp of the next great push.

 
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Allison Henry, General Member and National Womens' Network Convenor

Allison Henry is a lifelong republican and has been an active member of the ARM for nearly two decades. She was involved in Sydney’s Inner West Forum in the 1990s, volunteered on the 1999 referendum campaign, was elected to the NSW Branch in the early 2000s and was the ARM’s National Director between 2003 and 2006. Allison is passionate about engaging women and culturally diverse communities in the push for an Australian republic.

Allison is the Founding Director of Millwood Consulting, a niche agency focused on improving the effectiveness and impact of non-government and not-for-profit organisations in their engagement with governments. Between 2006 and 2011, Allison was a Ministerial Advisor in the Rudd and Gillard Governments, including as a senior advisor to the Prime Minister.

Allison lives in the Northern Rivers region of NSW, is a devoted aunt to four potential future Australian Presidents, and is a rabid Sydney Swans supporter.

 
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Will Fowles, General Member

Will Fowles first got involved in the ARM in 1997, and was elected National Youth Convenor in 2001. No longer youthful, he returned to the National Committee in 2014.

Professionally, Will is the director of Piper Communications, where he provides high level government relations advice for a range of clients, focussing on the property and planning, environment, arts, tourism and financial services sectors.

Will's passions extend to sport: he is a trustee of the Melbourne & Olympic Parks Trust, and a former Melbourne Cricket Club Committee member.

His first-class network has been built within the business, sporting and not-for-profit communities, as well as through his continuing involvement in public life. Will is a former candidate for Lord Mayor of Melbourne and an active member of the Australian Labor Party. He also sits on the board of Gertrude Opera and the Corporate Advisory Committee for Melbourne City Mission.

Will considers that waiting around for the death of a monarch to move on this unfinished business is as absurd as the concept of having a foreign head of state at all: it relies on biological, rather than political, circumstances to determine our nation's future.

 
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Georgia Tree, Acting Youth Convenor

Georgia hails from Western Australia, studies a Master of International Relations and National Security, and works for a Federal Member of Parliament. She has previously held the position of councillor of the Curtin Student Guild, and served on the National Executive on the National Union of Students. She has extensive campaign experience, from volunteering on the ACTU’s Build a Better Future Campaign, to contributing as a Field Organiser for the Australian Labor Party in the 2016 Federal Election.


Georgia is stoked to be joining the ARM team at time when the nation is ready for change.

 

National Office Staff

 
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Sandy Biar, Campaign Director and Deputy National Director

Sandy has more than a decade of political campaign experience in Australia, including as the former director of the Australian branch of the international digital advocacy agency IMGE. He has advised parliamentarians and parliamentary leaders and worked as a consultant to State and Federal election campaigns, and specialises in online communications, voter targeting and supporter engagement. He holds degrees in International Studies (Hons), a Master of Communications (Public Relations) and a Master of Business Analytics (predictive analytics and data science). In his spare time he serves as a Public Affairs Officer with the Australian Army.

 
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Zoe Bowman, Executive Officer

Zoe is a campaign and communications specialist with 20 years’ experience across the non-profit, public and educational sectors. She is a second-generation ARM member. Zoe works as the ARM’s Executive Officer supporting the Director, Executive and National Committee and managing the organisation’s operational processes.

Her professional background includes research and writing, policy development, program delivery and project management. For the last several years she has focused on the development and implementation of customer relations management systems and the use of social media to build and nurture engaged communities. She has worked with the Medical Board of Queensland, the Police Integrity Commission (NSW), the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation, in the School of Visual Art at ANU and as an Advisor in the Federal Parliament.

 
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David McGregor, National Organiser

David McGregor is the National Organiser at the Australian Republic Movement. He was previously the National Digital & Campaigns Officer at The Australian Workers’ Union, and a researcher at The Australian Financial Review and Business Review Weekly. A passionate republican, David is heading the grassroots campaign to win a national vote for an Australian head of state. David holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Melbourne, is a graduate of the Leadership, Organizing and Action Harvard Kennedy School Executive Education program and a fellow of the Centre for Australian Progress. In his spare time he serves as a Public Affairs Officer with the Australian Army.

 

 

Our Foundation

The Australian Republic Movement was established in 1991 with the following declaration:

We, as Australians, united in one indissoluble Commonwealth, affirm our allegiance to the nation and people of Australia.

We assert that the freedom and unity of Australia must derive its strength from the will of its people.

We believe that the harmonious development of the Australian community demands that the allegiance of Australians must be fixed wholly within and upon Australia and Australian institutions.

We therefore propose, as a great national goal for Australia - AUSTRALIA SHALL BECOME AN INDEPENDENT REPUBLIC.

We the undersigned Foundation Members now pledge our best endeavours to this goal:

  • Tom Keneally AO

  • Geoffrey Dutton AO

  • Prof Donald Horne AO

  • Jenny Kee

  • Dr Franco Belgiorno-Nettis CBE AM

  • The Hon Franca Arena MLC

  • Faith Bandler AM

  • Mark Day

  • Geraldine Doogue

  • Colin Lanceley AO

  • Harry Seidler AC OBE

  • Malcolm Turnbull

  • David Williamson AO

  • The Hon Neville Wran AC QC 

Corporate information

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Contact Us

Please contact us using the form below, or via the addresses provided.

Media enquiries:

media@republic.org.au

Campaign enquiries:

campaign.director@republic.org.au

Membership enquiries:

membership@republic.org.au

Volunteer enquiries:

volunteer@republic.org.au

 
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Message line:

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(02) 6257 3705