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This is the first Press Club Address by the Prime Minister Kevin Rudd since was re-elected leader of the Australian Labor Party and sworn in as Prime Minister.
Mr Rudd was born in the country town of Nambour in Queensland in 1957, the son of a share farmer and a nurse. Mr Rudd was educated at the Eumundi Primary School, Marist College Ashgrove and Nambour State High School, where he was Dux of the school. At the age of 15 he joined the Australian Labor Party.
In 1981 Mr Rudd graduated with first class honours from the Australian National University in Canberra with a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Asian Studies before he joined the Department of Foreign Affairs.
Prior to entering Parliament, Mr Rudd worked as a diplomat and a senior public official. He served in the Australian Embassy in Stockholm and later in the Australian Embassy in Beijing as First Secretary. Rudd also worked as Chief of Staff to Queensland Premier Wayne Goss and later as Director General of the Cabinet Office, the central policy agency of the Queensland Government.
Mr Rudd contested the Federal seat of Griffith for the Australian Labor Party in 1996. The Keating Labor Government was defeated at the 1996 election and Mr Rudd’s bid to win a seat in Parliament was unsuccessful. Between 1996 and 1998 Mr Rudd then worked in business, primarily as the Senior China Consultant for KPMG Australia. His role focused on opening up trade and business opportunities for Australian corporates in China and Taiwan.
In 1998 Mr Rudd again contested the seat of Griffith and was elected to the Parliament of Australia. He was immediately elected Chair of the Parliamentary Labor Party’s Committee on National Security & Trade and served on a variety of parliamentary committees and taskforces. Following the November 2001 election, Mr Rudd was appointed Shadow Minister for Foreign Affairs, subsequently adding responsibilities for International Security in 2003 and Trade in 2005.
Mr Rudd was elected as leader of the Labor Party in 2006 and became Prime Minister in 2007.
Mr Rudd served as Prime Minister from 2007 to 2010 and then served as Australia’s Foreign Minister from 2010 to 2012.
Mr Rudd and his wife Therese met at University and were married in 1981. They are the proud parents of Jessica, Nicholas and Marcus and the doting grandparents of Jessica and Albert’s daughter Josephine.