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Bill Hayden Biography, Political Career, Died at the age of 90, Family, Wife, Daughter, and More

William George Hayden AC (23 January 1933 – 21 October 2023) served as the 21st governor-general of Australia from 1989 to 1996. From 1977 to 1983, he was Labor Party Leader and Leader of the Opposition. From 1983 to 1988, he served as Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade under Bob Hawke and as Treasurer of Australia in 1975 under Gough Whitlam. He has died at the age of 90.

Early in 1977, Hayden challenged Whitlam for the party leadership and lost by just two votes. He defeated Lionel Bowen to succeed Whitlam as Leader of the Opposition at the end of the year, following Labor’s defeat at the 1977 election. While Hayden led the party to a substantial swing in the 1980 election, the party fell well short of victory. After months of speculation, he was replaced by Bob Hawke just a few weeks before the 1983 election. After serving as Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade from 1983 to 1988, Hayden became Governor-General. Only Lord Gowrie occupied that position for longer than he did.

Bill Hayden Career


Hayden was born in Brisbane, Queensland. He attended Brisbane State High School and then joined the Queensland Police, working as a police officer for eight years while studying economics part-time at the University of Queensland. Hayden was elected to the House of Representatives at the 1961 federal election, aged 28 – along with Manfred Cross and Doug McClelland, Hayden was the earliest elected Labor MP still alive at the time of his death.

Early Political Involvement:

Bill Hayden’s political journey began in the 1960s, when he became actively involved in the Australian Labor Party (ALP). His dedication and leadership abilities quickly propelled him through the ranks of the party.

Member of Parliament:

In 1961, Hayden was elected as the Member of Parliament (MP) for Oxley, Queensland. He represented this constituency for a considerable period, earning respect for his commitment to his constituents.

Treasurer of Australia:

In the early 1970s, Hayden held the crucial position of Treasurer of Australia under Prime Minister Gough Whitlam. In this role, he played a vital part in shaping the nation’s economic policies.

Leader of the Opposition:

From 1977 to 1983, Bill Hayden assumed the role of Leader of the Opposition. His leadership during this period was marked by a steadfast commitment to the principles of the Labor Party.

Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade:

After the ALP’s victory in the 1983 elections, Hayden was appointed as the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade in the government led by Prime Minister Bob Hawke. In this capacity, he played a crucial role in shaping Australia’s international relations and trade policies.

Governor-General of Australia:

One of the pinnacle points of Hayden’s career came in 1989 when he was appointed as the 21st governor-general of Australia. In this ceremonial role, he represented the Crown in Australia and performed various state duties.

Bill Hayden Death


In May 1960, Hayden married Dallas Broadfoot, the daughter of a miner from Ipswich. They initially lived in a rented cottage in Dinmore before building a house in Ipswich’s western suburbs. The couple had three daughters and a son. Their oldest daughter Michaela died in 1966 at the age of five after being struck by a car.

In September 2018, Hayden was baptized as a Roman Catholic at St Mary’s Church, Ipswich. He told The Catholic Leader that “there’s been a gnawing pain in my heart and soul about what is the meaning of life”.

Death Reason

Former governor-general Bill Hayden dies aged 90

Hayden passed away on 21 October 2023, nine years to the day after Gough Whitlam. His passing was commemorated by Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, who announced Hayden would be honored with a state funeral.

Akhil Rawat
Akhil Rawathttps://indiasmagazine.com
I'm a passionate digital marketing expert and content journalist with 6+ years of experience in covering the latest news about the world’s most famous personalities.

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