Reginald Swartz

The Honourable
Sir Reginald Swartz
Member of the Australian Parliament
for Darling Downs
In office
10 December 1949  2 November 1972
Preceded by Arthur Fadden
Succeeded by Tom McVeigh
Personal details
Born (1911-04-14)14 April 1911
Brisbane, Queensland
Died 2 February 2006(2006-02-02) (aged 94)
Nationality Australian
Political party Liberal Party of Australia
Occupation Soldier

Sir Reginald William Colin Swartz KBE MBE (Mil.) (14 April 1911 – 2 February 2006), best known as Reg Swartz, was an Australian Liberal Party politician who was Minister during the governments of Sir Robert Menzies, Harold Holt and John Gorton. In particular, he is best known as the Minister for Civil Aviation between 1966 and 1969.

He represented the Division of Darling Downs in the House of Representatives between 1949 and 1972 and was a member of the Government for the entire length of his parliamentary service.

Swartz Barracks at the Oakey Army Aviation Centre is named for him.

Early life

Swartz was born in Brisbane in 1911 and attended Toowoomba Grammar School. He joined the 2nd AIF during World War II. Swartz was a member of the 2/26th Infantry Battalion of the Australian 8th Division in the Battle of Malaya. After capture by the Japanese, he was a prisoner of war in Changi prison and worked on the Burma–Thailand Railway. He was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire for his war service.

In 1988, he accompanied John Howard along with two other parliamentarians who were former POWs, John Carrick and Tom Uren, to the opening of the Hellfire Pass Memorial Museum, commemorating the 2700 Australians who died working on the Burma-Thailand Railway.

Parliamentary career

Swartz was elected as the Liberal member for Darling Downs in 1949. As such, he was a "Forty-niner" which was the name for the Liberal and Country Party members first elected in the landslide victory by the Coalition in that year.

Menzies appointed Swartz as Parliamentary Secretary for Trade in 1956. In that position, he led Trade Missions to India in 1956 and South East Asia in 1958. He was appointed as Minister for Repatriation in 1961 and served in that position before becoming Minister for Health from 1964 to 1966 and briefly Minister for Social Services in early 1965.

Harold Holt appointed Swartz as Minister for Civil Aviation in 1966 and he served in that Ministry for three years. John Gorton appointed him as Minister for National Development in 1969 and he served in that position for three years. He was Leader of the House responsible for managing Government business in the House of Representatives from 1971 to 1972.

Swartz was knighted in 1972 and retired as a parliamentarian later that year.


Political offices
Preceded by
Walter Cooper
Minister for Repatriation
Succeeded by
Colin McKellar
Preceded by
Harrie Wade
Minister for Health
Succeeded by
Jim Forbes
Preceded by
Hugh Roberton
Minister for Social Services
Succeeded by
Ian Sinclair
Preceded by
Denham Henty
Minister for Civil Aviation
Succeeded by
Bob Cotton
Preceded by
David Fairbairn
Minister for National Development
Succeeded by
Rex Patterson
Parliament of Australia
Preceded by
Arthur Fadden
Member for Darling Downs
Succeeded by
Tom McVeigh
This article is issued from Wikipedia - version of the 9/3/2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.