Each week, Alex Malley, the chief executive of CPA Australia, is joined by influential leaders for a thought-provoking conversation about their life and how they've made a real difference.
Type: Talk Show
Runtime: 30 minutes
In Conversation with Alex Malley - William McMahon - Netflix
Sir William McMahon, (; 23 February 1908 – 31 March 1988), was an Australian politician who served as the 20th Prime Minister of Australia, in office from 1971 to 1972 as leader of the Liberal Party. He was a government minister for over 21 years, the longest continuous service in Australian history. McMahon was born and raised in Sydney, studying law at the University of Sydney and working as a commercial lawyer. He served in the Australian Army during World War II, finishing with the rank of major; after the war's end, he returned to university to complete an economics degree. McMahon was elected to parliament at the 1949 federal election. He was promoted to the ministry in 1951 and added to cabinet in 1956, holding several different portfolios in the Menzies Government. His final appointment under Menzies was as Minister for Labour and National Service in 1958; he gained a high profile as the minister responsible for the reintroduction of conscription. In 1966, McMahon was elected deputy leader of the Liberal Party and became Treasurer in the new Holt Government. Over the following three years oversaw a large reduction in the national deficit. McMahon made his first bid for the prime ministership in 1968, following Holt's disappearance; his candidacy was vetoed by John McEwen, the leader of the junior party in the governing coalition. McMahon initially continued on as Treasurer in the Gorton Government, but in 1969 was demoted to Minister for External Affairs after an unsuccessful challenge for the leadership. He eventually succeeded Gorton in early 1971, winning a vote against Billy Snedden after Gorton lost the confidence of the partyroom. McMahon became prime minister at the age of 63, and remains the oldest non-interim prime minister to take office. His government has been described as “a blend of cautious innovation and fundamental orthodoxy”, and continued many of the policies of its immediate predecessors, such as Gorton's phased withdrawal of Australian troops from Vietnam. In its final year it was faced with high inflation and unemployment. McMahon was defeated by Gough Whitlam's Labor Party at the 1972 federal election, ending 23 consecutive years of Coalition rule. He resigned the Liberal leadership, but remained in parliament until 1982 as a backbencher. McMahon is often considered one of Australia's worst prime ministers, and after leaving office several of his former colleagues openly criticised his leadership style and personal character. However, Gough Whitlam acknowledged him as “an extraordinarily skilful, resourceful and tenacious politician”, and credited him with having prevented a larger margin of defeat in 1972.
In Conversation with Alex Malley - Honours - Netflix
McMahon was appointed a Privy Counsellor in 1966, a Companion of Honour in the New Year's Day Honours of 1972 and a Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St Michael and St George in the Queen's Birthday Honours of 1977. Following the 2009 redistribution of New South Wales federal electorates, the Division of Prospect was renamed the Division of McMahon starting at the 2010 federal election.
In Conversation with Alex Malley - References - Netflix