Greens Leader Bob Brown Resigns
After a 16-year career in Parliament, Senate member and Greens leader Bob Brown has resigned.
“It is prime time to hand over the reins,” Mr Brown said in a statement.
The Greens’ deputy leader Christine Milne will fill the 67-year-old politician’s shoes, and three candidates are up for her vacated position, said the Sydney Morning Herald. Mr Brown has led the Australian Greens party since its formation in 1992.
“Under Bob's wise leadership, the Greens have grown into the undisputed third force in Australian politics, with our vision, policies and action towards a healthier, cleverer, cleaner future embraced by 1.7 million Australians,” Senator Milne said.
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“Under my leadership, we will work tirelessly towards making Australia a great place to live and work, now and into the future; a country whose government values what our people value.”
Over the course of his political career, Mr Brown successfully campaigned for increased protection of Tasmania's wilderness areas, Aboriginal children's rights, same-sex marriage, and his opposition of the Iraq invasion, the latter of which resulted in his brief suspension from Parliament.
When questioned about what he plans to do with his time now, the senator – the first openly gay member of Federal Parliament – said, "I look forward to fresh green pursuits including writing, photography, music, occasional talks, bushwalking, and getting out with [partner] Paul [Thomas] to see Miranda Gibson who has been perched for 120 days 60 metres high, in defence of a giant tree facing destruction in central Tasmania.”
After the announcement in Canberra, Prime Minister Julia Gillard said, “I wish him well for his life beyond politics.”
He will officially leave his seat in June.
Business Chief Legend: Ho Ching, CEO of Temasek
Ask Singaporeans who Ho Ching is, and the majority will answer the ‘wife of Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong’. And that’s certainly true. However, she’s also the CEO of Temasek Holdings, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, and one of the world’s largest investment companies.
Well, she is until October 1, 2021, as she recently announced she would be retiring following 16 years as CEO of the investment giant.
Since taking the reins in 2004, two years after joining Temasek as Executive Director, Ho has gradually transformed what was an investment firm wholly owned by Singapore’s Government into an active investor worldwide, splashing out on sectors like life sciences and tech, expanding its physical footprint with 11 offices worldwide (from London to Mumbai to San Francisco) and delivering growth of US$120 billion between 2010-2020.
Described by Temasek chairman Lim Boon Heng as having taken “bold steps to open new pathways in finding the character of the organisations”, Ho is credited with building Temasek’s international portfolio, with China recently surpassing Singapore for the first time.
As global a footprint as Ho may have however, she has her feet firmly planted on Singapore soil and is committed to this tiny city-state where she was not only educated (excluding a year at Stanford) but has remained throughout her long and illustrious career – first as an engineer at the Ministry of Defence in 1976, where she met her husband, and most notably as CEO of Singapore Technologies, where she spent a decade, and where she is credited with repositioning and growing the group into the largest listed defence engineering company in Asia.
It’s little wonder Ho has featured on Forbes’ annual World’s Most Powerful Women list for the past 16 years, in 2007 as the third most powerful woman in business outside the US, and in 2020 at #30 worldwide.
But it’s not all business. Ho has a strong track record in Singapore public service, serving as chairman of the Singapore Institute of Standards and Industrial Research and as deputy chairman of the Economic Development Board; and is a committed philanthropist with a focus on learning difficulties and healthcare.
As the pandemic kicked off, she not only led active investments in technology and life sciences, with German COVID-19 vaccine developer BioNTech among the most recent additions to Temasek’s portfolio, but through the Temasek Foundation – the firm’s philanthropic arm which supports vulnerable groups close to Ho’s heart, handed out hand sanitiser and face masks.
So, you would be forgiven for thinking that at age 68, Ho might simply relax. But in March 2021, just as she announced her retirement from Temasek, Ho joined the Board of Directors of Wellcome Leap, a US-based non-profit organisation that’s dedicated to accelerating innovations in global health. Not ready to put her firmly grounded feet up yet it seems.