Tony Abbott

Quick Facts

  • Name: Anthony John (Tony) Abbott
  • Born: 4 November 1957, London, England
  • Federal Opposition Leader since December 2009
  • Volunteer member of the New South Wales Rural Fire Service
  • Joined St. Patrick's Seminary to become a priest at aged 26, but did not complete his training.


Tony Abbott holds a Bachelor of Economics and a Bachelor of Laws from Sydney University and a Master of Arts (Politics and Philosophy) from Oxford University in the United Kingdom. After finishing university he worked as a journalist, writing for The Bulletin and The Australian.

Between 1990 and 1993 Abbott worked as press secretary and political advisor to the then Leader of the Opposition, Dr John Hewson. He was Executive Director of Australians for Constitutional Monarchy from 1993 to 1994, until his election to the House of Representatives in a by-election in the seat of Warringah. After his re-election in 1996, he was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs.

Abbott's first ministerial role, as Minister for Employment Services, came following the 1998 election. Subsequent ministerial positions include Minister for Employment, Workplace Relations and Small Business, and Minister for Health and Ageing. After the election in 2007 he became Shadow Minister for Families, Community Services, Indigenous Affairs & the Voluntary Sector. He has also been Shadow Minister for Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs. Abbott became Leader of the Opposition in December 2009.

As well as his politics, Abbott is known for his physical fitness and his participation in triathlons, ultra-marathons, and the 'Pollie Pedal', a nine-day bike ride between Melbourne and Sydney.



  • Abbott, Tony 2009, Battlelines, Melbourne University Press
  • Abbott, Tony 1997, How to win the constitutional war: and give both sides what they want, Wakefield Press
  • Abbott, Tony 1995, The minimal monarchy: and why it still makes sense for Australia, Wakefield Press