Biography — Dr. Bob Brown
Former Senator Brown has been a life-long activist. In December 1982, while Director of the Wilderness Society, Former Senator Brown was one of 600 jailed due to a blockade of the dam-works on Tasmania’s wild Franklin River. Former Senator Brown spent 19 days in Risdon Prison and, on the day after his release, was elected as the first Green into Tasmania's Parliament. In 1986 he was shot at and assaulted during protests against logging at Tasmania’s Farmhouse Creek. He was arrested and jailed twice in 1995 for demonstrating peacefully to protect Tasmania's Tarkine Wilderness from roading and logging. In 1990 Former Senator Brown established the Australian Bush Heritage Fund to buy land for conservation. His books include Lake Pedder, Wild Rivers, Tarkine Trails, The Greens, The Valley of the Giants, Tasmania’s Recherche Bay, Memo for a Saner World and Earth.
As a State MP, Former Senator Brown introduced a wide range of private members' initiatives, including freedom of information, death with dignity, lowering parliamentary salaries, gay law reform, banning the battery-hen industry and nuclear-free Tasmania. The initiative on freedom of information became law.
Former Senator Brown was a driving force in forming the Australian Greens in 1992. He has travelled extensively, fostering Green politics and forming close links with Greens in Europe, the Americas, Africa and Asia.
In 1996 Former Senator Brown was elected to the Australian Senate. In 2010 he led the Australian Greens to their most successful election ever – securing the first federal lower house seat for a minor party at a general election since before World War II and a balance of power in both houses. This resulted in an historic agreement being signed between the Australian Greens and Australian Labor Party to form government. The agreement led to a raft of reforms including a carbon price; significant dental care investment, legislation to improve the rights of the territories, a parliamentary budget office, guaranteed private members time in both houses, question time reform, the process for a referendum on indigenous recognition in the constitution, the first parliamentary debate on Afghanistan and investment in high speed rail.
He aims to keep championing such issues as global democracy, the protection of Tasmania's ancient forests, equal marriage, and euthanasia. In 2012, Former Senator Brown was widely condemned in the media after his Third Green Oration promoting global democracy. He retired from the Senate in mid-June but says 'I will be a Green until the day I die'.
Former Senator Brown is also the current campaign leader for Sea Shepherd's Operation Kimberley Miinimbi, Sea Shepherd's campaign to protect the world’s largest humpback whale nursery from the world's largest gas hub proposed by Woodside and the Western Australian Government.
"It has been a real pleasure and honour working alongside Bob during Operation Kimberley Miinimbi and I can think of no one more suited in taking Sea Shepherd Australia to the next level in defence of our life-sustaining oceans. Over the years with our crew on the front lines in Antarctica, Bob has been our voice in parliament, to the media and to the people of Australia, representing our brave crew in their defence of the Southern Ocean Whale Sanctuary from the illegal operations of the Japanese whale-poaching fleet,” said Hansen.
Sea Shepherd founder and President, Captain Paul Watson, echoed Hansen’s approval of Former Senator Brown’s appointment to the Sea Shepherd Australia Board:
"Bob Brown has been a hero of mine for three decades going back to the days of the campaigns to protect the Franklin River. I am immensely proud to have Bob join the Board of Directors of Sea Shepherd Australia. His experience as an activist, an environmentalist and politician will be an incredible asset to us. What I most admire about Bob is that he is a living example of the three virtues that we need to protect our oceans and our planet — passion, courage, and imagination. Welcome aboard, Bob.”
Former Senator Brown added, "It is an honour to join the Board of Sea Shepherd Australia, whose mission, backed by the majority of Australians, is to protect nearly 1,000 whales from the Japanese slaughter fleet this summer. Sea Shepherd is doing the job the Gillard government should be doing in moving to halt Tokyo's illegal whaling."
Sea Shepherd Australia officially welcomes Former Senator Bob Brown to the Sea Shepherd Australia Board of Directors!