Senator Dean Smith
Senator for Western Australia
Since becoming a Senator for Western Australia in May 2012, Dean Smith has been a strong voice for Western Australia and the values of the Liberal Party. Dean has been an active member of the WA Liberal Party for over 30 years, and in 2011 was awarded the ‘Distinguished Service Medal’ in recognition of long and distinguished service to the Liberal Party.
Prior to entering the Senate, Dean worked as a Principal Policy Adviser to former WA Premier Hon Richard Court AC and as an Adviser to former Prime Minister, the Hon John Howard OM AC. Dean’s extensive first-hand political and policy experience is matched with almost 10 years commercial experience with two of Australia’s most prominent companies - Insurance Australia Group (IAG) and SingTel Optus.
Following the re-election of the Coalition Government in 2016, Dean was selected by the Prime Minister as Chair of the Joint Committee of Public Accounts and Audit, one of the oldest committees in the Parliament.
Prior to this, he was appointed Chair of the Joint Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Works, which in 2015 oversaw the parliamentary approvals of $3.5 billion worth of Government public works projects.
In 2015 and in 2016, Dean's Senate colleagues elected him to the position of Deputy Government Whip in the Senate. He also serves as Chair of the Coalition Backbench Policy Committee on Communications and the Arts.
As a committed Liberal, Dean is a fervent believer in limited government, promoting personal responsibility and liberty, and strengthening Australian Federalism.
Since January 2015, he has been a regular monthly columnist in Australia’s leading business and financial newspaper, The Australian Financial Review.
In February 2018 Dean was named the inaugural winner of the McKinnon Political Leader of the Year. This is a, non-partisan award chosen by a selection panel which included former Prime Ministers Julia Gillard and John Howard. Dean was recognised for his courageous, visionary and collaborative political leadership and for tackling vital issues of public policy, overcoming adversity and achieving real change for the public good.
In January 2019 Dean followed in the footsteps of other notable Western Australian Liberal Senators when his colleagues elected him to the position of Chief Government Whip in the Senate.
Dean is also an active member of a variety of community groups across Western Australia, but one of his proudest groups that his is involved in is the Perth Rotary Club. Dean was awarded the Paul Harris Fellow in recognition of his contribution to Rotary.