Mark Coulton

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Mark Coulton

Mark Coulton.jpg
Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government
Assumed office
6 February 2020
Prime MinisterScott Morrison
Preceded byHimself
Minister for Regional Services, Decentralisation and Local Government
In office
26 May 2019 – 6 February 2020
Prime MinisterScott Morrison
Preceded byBridget McKenzie
Succeeded byHimself
Andrew Gee (Regional Education, Decentralisation)
Assistant Minister for Trade and Investment[1]
In office
5 March 2018 – 6 February 2020
Prime MinisterMalcolm Turnbull
Scott Morrison
Preceded byLuke Hartsuyker
Succeeded byAndrew Gee (Minister Assisting)
Deputy Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives
In office
30 August 2016 – 26 February 2018 (2018-02-26)
Preceded byBruce Scott
Succeeded byKevin Hogan
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Parkes
Assumed office
24 November 2007
Preceded byJohn Cobb
Personal details
Born (1958-02-03) 3 February 1958 (age 62)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Political partyNational
Spouse(s)Robyn
Children3
OccupationFarmer
Websitemarkcoulton.com.au

Mark Maclean Coulton (born 3 February 1958) is an Australian politician who has been Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government in the Morrison Government since February 2020. He is a member of the National Party and has served in the House of Representatives since the 2007 federal election, representing the Division of Parkes in New South Wales. He previously served as Minister for Regional Services, Decentralisation and Local Government (2019–2020), Assistant Minister for Trade and Investment (2019–2020), Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment (2018–2019), and Deputy Speaker of the House (2016–2018).

Early life[edit]

Coulton was born in Sydney on 3 February 1958,[2] the son of Jack and Nancy Coulton. He grew up on the family's property in Gravesend, New South Wales. He was educated at Warialda Public School and Farrer Memorial Agricultural High School, where he was a boarder. He returned to the family farm after leaving school and later acquired a property of his own.[3]

Prior to entering parliament, Coulton was involved in various community organisations, including the Warialda Pony Club, the Warialda Rotary Club, and the local Bush Fire Brigade.[3] He served as president of the Warialda Pastoral and Agricultural Association, which organised the local agricultural show.[4] In September 2004, Coulton was elected as the inaugural mayor of Gwydir Shire, a new local government area created from three smaller councils.[5]

Politics[edit]

Coulton announced in November 2006 that he would seek National Party preselection for the Division of Parkes. He had previously been the chairman of the party's electoral council for the Division of Gwydir, which was abolished and merged into Parkes.[6] The incumbent Gwydir MP John Anderson was retiring, while the incumbent Parkes MP John Cobb chose to contest the Division of Calare.[7]

Coulton was elected to parliament at the 2007 federal election. He served as a shadow parliamentary secretary from 2007 to 2010, and then as the Nationals' Chief Whip in the House of Representatives from 2010 to 2016. After the 2016 election he was elected Deputy Speaker.[2] He endorsed Michael McCormack for the leadership of the National Party in February 2018, following the resignation of Barnaby Joyce.[8]

Government minister[edit]

In March 2018, Coulton resigned as Deputy Speaker to take up the position of Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment in the Turnbull Government.[9] He retained the position when Scott Morrison became prime minister in August 2018. In May 2019, following the Morrison Government's re-election at the 2019 election, his title was changed to Assistant Minister for Trade and Investment and he was also given a full ministerial portfolio as Minister for Regional Services, Decentralisation and Local Government. Following a reshuffle in February 2020, he holds the position of Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government.[2]

Coulton repeated his endorsement of Michael McCormack for his party's leadership at the February 2020 leadership spill, describing it as an "unfortunate distraction".[10]

Personal life[edit]

Coulton married schoolteacher Robyn Redford in 1981, with whom he had three children.[5][3]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Titled "Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment" until 29 May 2019
  2. ^ a b c "Hon Mark Coulton MP". Parliament of Australia. Retrieved 27 May 2020.
  3. ^ a b c "Hon Mark Coulton MP". NSW Nationals. Retrieved 27 May 2020.
  4. ^ "CV". Mark Coulton MP. Retrieved 27 May 2020.
  5. ^ a b "Maiden speech". Hansard. Parliament of Australia. 18 February 2008. Retrieved 27 May 2020.
  6. ^ "Gwydir Mayor to seek Nationals' preselection for Parkes". ABC News. 20 November 2006. Retrieved 27 May 2020.
  7. ^ Humphries, David (7 July 2006). "Nats issue call to arms to save Gwydir". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 27 May 2020.
  8. ^ Hoar, Jennifer (23 February 2018). "Mark Coulton backs Michael McCormack to replace Barnaby Joyce as Nationals leader". Daily Liberal. Retrieved 27 May 2020.
  9. ^ Turnbull, Malcolm (1 March 2018). "Changes to the Ministry" (Press release). Government of Australia. Archived from the original on 5 March 2018. Retrieved 6 March 2018. Mark Coulton MP will join the Ministry as Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment.
  10. ^ Worboys, Jessica (4 February 2020). "Parkes MP Mark Coulton happy with leadership spill results". Northern Daily Leader. Retrieved 27 May 2020.

External links[edit]

Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
John Cobb
Member for Parkes
2007–present
Incumbent
Preceded by
Bruce Scott
Deputy Speaker of the Australian House of Representatives
2016–2018
Succeeded by
Kevin Hogan
Political offices
Preceded by
Luke Hartsuyker
Assistant Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment
2018–2020
Incumbent