Ursula Stephens 'Shock' Exit from the Not for Profit Sector
16 September 2010 at 4:28 pm
|Senator Ursula Stephens discusses Labor's Not for Profit reform initiative in August 2010.|
The Gillard Government's new front bench line up has seen the shock demotion of the Parliamentary Secretary for SocialInclusion and the Voluntary Sector, Senator Ursula Stephens.
A spokesperson for Ursula Stephens says the demotion was a great shock to the Labor Senator for NSW.
Commenting on the Gillard Government's Ministerial announcement, Adam Smith, the former CEO of the Foundation for Young Australians says that while the new front bench may be a strong line-up for the sector it is so very disappointing that Ursula Stephens was pushed aside in such a poor fashion.
Smith says her integrity and passion for the sector's work was consistently outstanding and he's sure she will be missed.
Pro Bono Australia Founder, Karen Mahlab says Senator Stephens initiated wide ranging consultations with diverse groups of people and organisations at a time where some big thinking about the sector was needed.
Mahlab says the Sector must make an effort not to lose the momentum she created.
The CEO for the Centre for Social Impact, Prof. Peter Shergold has also paid tribute to the commitment and enthusiasm of Ursula Stephens saying she did a fine job consulting with community organisations and ensuring that their diverse voices were heard.
Ursula Stephens was elected to the Senate for NSW in 2001 and re-elected in 2007.
She served as Parliamentary Secretary for Social Inclusion and the Voluntary Sector in the Rudd Labor government where she constructed an ambitious change agenda for Australia’s third sector including pushing through a National Compact between Government and the Not for Profit sector.
Prior to entering parliament she served as Chair of the NSW Rural Communities Consultative Council, a member of the NSW Rural Assistance Authority, a member of the NSW Board of Vocational Education and Training and Deputy Chair of the NSW Women’s Advisory Council.
Senator Stephens has three years to serve in the Federal Parliament and a spokesperson in her office says she will continue to chair a number of Senate Committees.