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Members’ biographical register

Dr Elizabeth Constable

Principal Honours
Member of the Order of Australia (AM) awarded in the Queen's Birthday 2019 Honours List, 10 June 2019, for service to the Parliament of Western Australia, and to education
Date: 2 December 1943
Place: Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Arrival in WA
Arrived in Western Australia, 1975
In USA 1970–1975 then UK for six months, to Western Australia 1975
Daughter of Leonard Morehead Blanton, manufacturer’s agent and importer, and Phyllis Abbott
Marriage and Family
Married 1 October 1964, Sydney to Ian Jeffrey Constable (later Professor of Ophthalmology, University of Western Australia), son of John James and Elsie Enid Hinksman
Children: two sons
Cause of Death:
Church of England
Educated PLC Pymble (subsequently Pymble Ladies College)
University of Sydney, MA in Psychology
University of New England (NSW), DipEd
Harvard University, MEd
University of Western Australia, PhD
Teacher and university lecturer
Employment History
Vocational guidance officer, Department of Labour and Industry NSW 1964
Taught English and History, NSW Department of Education 1967–1969
Research officer, Harvard Graduate School of Education 1972–1975
Lecturer in Education, University of Western Australia 1975–1983
Director of Studies and Deputy Principal St Hilda’s Anglican School for Girls 1984–1987
Education consultant 1988–1991
Also part time Director of Admissions St Hilda’s and lecturer in Education, University of Western Australia

Registered psychologist with Psychology Board of Western Australia
Local Government Service
Independent liberal
Member Mosman Park branch of the Liberal Party from 1988
Liberal Party State Council 1989–1991
Liberal Party State Executive 1990–1991
President of the Fremantle Division 1990–1991
Member Joint Policy Committee 1988–1990
Member Education Policy Sub–Committee and Women’s Interests Policy Sub-Committee 1988–1991
Date Elected
20 July 1991
Inaugural Speech
Inaugural Video
No inaugural video is available as filming did not start until May 2003
Search for speeches by Elizabeth Constable
Valedictory Speech
Constable, Elizabeth, Valedictory Speech.pdf
Year Retired/Resigned
Floreat; Churchlands
Parliamentary Service
  • MLA Floreat 20 July 1991 (by-election)–14 December 1996. Elected to the Thirty-third Parliament for Floreat at a by-election on 20 July 1991 held to fill the vacancy consequent upon the resignation of Hon Andrew Mensaros. Electorate abolished in the redistribution of 1994.
  • MLA Churchlands from 14 December 1996–9 March 2013. Elected to the Thirty-fifth Parliament for Churchlands (new seat) on 14 December 1996. Re-elected 2001, 2005, 2008. Did not contest the general election of 9 March 2013.

  • Minister for Education; Tourism; Women's Interests from 23 September 2008–9 February 2009
  • Minister for Education; Tourism from 9 February 2009–14 December 2010
  • Minister for Education from 14 December 2010–29 June 2012

  • Member Select Committee Parliamentary Procedures for Uniform Legislation Agreements from 4 June to 27 August 1992
  • Member Standing Committee on Intergovernmental Agreements and Uniform Legislation Schemes from 4 August 1993 to 14 November 1996
  • Member Select Committee Ancient Shipwrecks from 3 November 1993 to 17 October 1995
  • Member Joint Standing Committee on the Anti Corruption Commission from 18 June 1997 to 10 January 2001
  • Member Joint Parliamentary Services Committee from 11 June 1998 to 10 January 2001
  • Co-opted member Education and Health Standing Committee from 7 April 2005 to 29 August 2006
  • Member Joint Standing Committee on the Commissioner for Children and Young People from 16 August 2012 to 30 January 2013
  • Member Public Accounts Committee from 16 August 2012 to 30 January 2013

Historical Notes
  • The second longest serving woman MP in WA
Private Member's Bills
Adoption Amendment Bill 2002 Legislative Assembly Second Reading - 26/6/2002
Adoption Amendment Bill 2002 Bill Lapsed - 23/1/2005
Lobbying Disclosure and Accountability Bill 2003 Bill Lapsed - 23/1/2005
Lobbying Disclosure and Accountability Bill 2007 Bill Lapsed - 7/8/2008
Member, Animal Experimentation Ethics Committee 1991
Board member, Perth USAsia Centre, since 2014
  • Member, National Constitution Centenary Foundation, 1994-2001
  • Trustee, Sir Francis Burt Law Foundation, 1995-2005
  • Honorary psychologist, Development Assessment Clinic, Princess Margaret Hospital 1975–1977
  • Member, Australian Foundation for the Prevention of Blindness (WA Division Inc) since 1985
  • Board member, The Help Foundation (Children’s Medical Research) 1991
  • Board member, Keogh Reproductive Medicine Research Institute, 1993-2004
  • Board member, Asthma Research Institute, 2003-2005
  • Member, Minister for Health Advisory Committee on Intellectually Handicapped 1981–1984
  • Consultant WA Autistic Children’s Association
  • Board of Directors, Dyslexia Research Foundation of Western Australia (Inc)
  • Member, Commonwealth Schools Commission Working Party on Gifted Children 1980
  • First female board member, Hale School, 1995–2004
  • Member, City Beach High School Council, 2003–2004
  • Member, Churchlands Senior High School Council, 2005–2008
  • Member, Art Collection Board, Murdoch University, since 2017
University of Western Australia:
  • Member, Steering Committee for Project on Handicapped Children in rural areas, National Centre for Research on Rural Education, University of Western Australia 1984–1985
  • Member, Careers Advisory Board, 1994-2004
  • Vice Chancellor's Fellow, 2013-2018
  • Chair, St Catherine's College, University of Western Australia, since 2013
St Hilda's Anglican School for Girls:
  • Council Member, 2000–2008
  • Chair, 2002–2008
  • Director of Studies, 1984–1987
  • Member, Western Australian Cricket Association since 1986
  • Member, Karrakatta Club since 1987
Published extensively on education training and assessment programmes, parent education child rearing, and special education including gifted children’s and disabled children programmes
MA in Psychology, DipEd, M Ed, PhD
D Black and G Bolton, eds, Biographical Register of Members of the Parliament of Western Australia: volume two 1930-2010, Western Australian Parliamentary History Project, Perth, WA, 2011, p. 48.
Department of the Premier and Cabinet. Its an Honour. (2019, June 10). Retrieved from
Parliament of Western Australia. Former Members. (2014 May 14). Retrieved fromhttp://intranet/parliament/Memblist.nsf/WAllMembersFlat/Constable,+Elizabeth?opendocument
Further Information
Chapter 27. Elizabeth Constable Making a Difference.pdf