The shortlist for the 2022 McKinnon Prize in Political Leadership was announced today, featuring a variety of achievements in leadership but with one strong theme. Leaders who responded to the needs of their communities – and demands for action on key issues – were recognised by the shortlisting committee, validating 2022 as the Year of the Citizen.
While major parties are strongly represented, the 2022 shortlist reflects the seismic changes in politics in 2022, with Australians responding to a diversity of leaders across all levels of government who listened, engaged and collaborated to drive positive outcomes for their constituents.
While the McKinnon Prize is designed to recognise positive impact, the shortlist includes leaders who were focused on the big issues of 2022, such as action on climate, integrity in governance, representation, and diversity, which were also rewarded electorally.
The McKinnon Prize in Political Leadership is a non-partisan and independent award that recognises outstanding Australian political leadership each year. It is a collaboration between the Susan McKinnon Foundation and the University of Melbourne.
Elected representatives with more than five years in elected office at a local, state and territory or federal level can be nominated for the McKinnon Political Leader of the Year.
The shortlisted leaders for the 2022 McKinnon Political Leader of the Year are:
- Anthony Albanese, Prime Minister
- Bridget Archer, Federal MP for Bass
- Linda Burney, Minister for Indigenous Australians
- Alex Greenwich, NSW MP for Sydney
- Matt Kean, NSW Treasurer
- Senator Penny Wong, Minister for Foreign Affairs
Fiona Patten MLC has been recognised with an honourable mention by the McKinnon Prize Shortlisting Committee for her significant achievements and impact over her parliamentary career.
The McKinnon Emerging Political Leader of the Year recognises elected representatives at a local, state and territory or federal level with fewer than five years in elected office.
The shortlisted leaders for the 2022 McKinnon Emerging Political Leader of the Year are:
- Joint nomination - Geraldine Atkinson and Marcus Stewart, Co-Chairs of the First Peoples’ Assembly of Victoria
- Dr Helen Haines, Federal MP for Indi
- Senator David Pocock, ACT
- Collective nomination - the Teal Independents
- Councillor Anthony Tran, Maribyrnong City Council
Danielle Wood, Chair of the 2022 McKinnon Prize Shortlisting Committee and CEO of the Grattan Institute, said good political leadership should be recognised amid ongoing policy challenges facing the nation.
“While you might not agree with the politics or policies of everyone on the shortlist, what is very clear is each political leader showed qualities of great leadership the McKinnon Prize aims to represent,” Ms Wood said.
“Those on the shortlists have displayed integrity, vision, and collaboration, and within their areas of influence have demonstrated courage to change our country for the better. This is worth celebrating.”
McKinnon Prize Patron and former prime minister Julia Gillard said the shortlisted nominees reflected how very different leaders are representing the interests and priorities of their constituents.
“Understandably and correctly, Australians expect a lot from their political leaders. The shortlisted nominees highlight the positive work our leaders are tackling at all levels of government,” Ms Gillard said.
“It’s this sort of leadership and contribution which I hope inspires the next generation to stand up and participate in meaningful, democratic discourse.”
McKinnon Prize Patron and former NSW Premier Mike Baird applauded the diversity of leaders on the shortlist and the variety of their impact across the political spectrum.
“This year’s McKinnon Prize shortlist demonstrates the diversity of good leadership, particularly emerging leadership, across the country,” Mr Baird said.
“From a local level to our Federal Parliament, we don’t expect to see the same style of leadership from every leader. 2022 saw different approaches to leadership which connected with communities. This year’s shortlist certainly shows that.”
Recipients of the 2022 McKinnon Prize in Political Leadership will be determined by a selection panel of distinguished Australian leaders later this month.
The panel will be looking for stories of real impact and achievement, where peoples’ lives were made better through an ability to demonstrate vision, work across partisan divides, build coalitions and collaborate to achieve positive outcomes.
For more information about the prize, selection criteria and the selection panel please visit www.mckinnonprize.org.au.