Politicking & McKenzies

Under Construction

We’ve had quite a number of people across our McKenzie/MacKenzie family network who have served or been active in the political arena – mainly at the Local Government level, but sometimes at State level too.

Alexander McKenzie Snr

  • Family of daughter Euphemia Warren nee McKenzie
    • Family of son John Warren
      • Family of daughter Agnes Grace Foley nee Warren – Agnesb 1888 Bundaberg (Qld BDM C626) d. 1941- 12,  – a Dressmaker,  married in 1913 in the Townsville area –12, to Ben Foley, a teacher, and later a Cane Farmer and fourth son of Welsh born Queensland ALP Thomas Foley MLA – 1, 23, a founding member of the Queensland Labor League in 1890 and Waterside Workers Union member, who served in the Queensland Parliament from 1909 until his death in 1920 in the seats of Townsville and Mundingburra.  Additional Note – this Welsh born Tom Foley MLA in our McKenzie family tree does not appear to have been related to another Thomas Andrew Foley MLA (b. 1886. d. 1973), son of Irish born Andrew Foley. Thomas Andrew Foley was a sometimes controversial Queensland ALP and Queensland Labour Party MLA, who was first elected to the Queensland Parliament in 1919 and later served in the Gair Parliament, and was in the Parliament until 1960 – 12,  So it would appear that in the years 1919 – 1920 that there were two ALP MLA’s in the Queensland Parliament named Tom Foley, which may have created some confusion ? 
        • son Thomas John Noel Foley b. 1914  Queensland – d. 2005 – 1, known as Noel. In April 1942 his engagement to Ailsa Annie Semple of Degilbo was announced –1. However the marriage did not proceed, as by September 1942 Ailsa had instead married Robert W L Finlay –1 – war times make for interesting situations ? Several years later,  in 1944,  Noel became engaged to South Australian born Lieutenant Lorna Mary Watkins – 1,  – by 1945 they were married. Lorna  was a nurse in WW2 in the AANS –1, -. By 1972 they appear to have been divorced, as Noel had remarried in 1972 to Jean Duncan Laing, who is known for her research into the Manly Quarantine Station – 12, . Known as Sir Noel Foley, after being knighted in  1978,  he was known for his involvement in the Australian Tobacco industry – he became CEO and Chairman of  Directors (in 1955) British Tobacco (Australia), General Manager of WD & HO Wills, Chairman of AMATIL – 1, . Other roles were Director of CSR, QANTAS, and a business executive with Westpac. He  has also been viewed by some as a controversial figure – and in 1896 was lobbying for the abolition of the FIRB – Federal Investment Review Board and even faced criminal charges in regard to Tobacco Company land dealings, by WD & HO Wills, in Tasmania in 1971 but these were dropped –  12344,  56, . Noel’s brother in law George Albert Preston, who had been employed in NSW by British Tobacco, was appointed to the Australian Tobacco Board in 1966 and remained in that role until 1977. There had been various incarnations of  “Tobacco Board’s” in Australia for at least four decades previously. The Australian Tobacco board was established in 1965 – 1, and from 1990 it was known as Australian Tobacco Marketing Advisory Committee – 1, 2, . This committee was wound up in 1995, and abolished in 1997 – with the organisation’s assets transferred to the Tobacco Research and Development Corporation, which was in turn abolished in 2003. There had been criticism of the level of government subsidies for the Australian tobacco leaf industry, which it has been claimed allowed inefficiencies. The tobacco leaf industry then continued to fold over the following five to ten years –1, .  However unlike his grandfather Tom Foley, the Welsh born Waterside Unionist and founding member of the Queensland Labor League in 1890, Sir Noel was more aligned with the conservative side of politics eg a supporter of John Howard, but was never a member of the Liberal Party during the 1980’s –1, . In 1989, He had been a member of the University of Sydney Council, and was also Chairman of its Graduate School of Management and Public Policy Foundation –1, 2, . Though interestingly he headed up the World Wildlife Fund in Australia in the 1970’s – 12, and then opposed the introduction of the Australia Card in 1987, as he saw it as “a serious threat to the privacy, liberty and safety of every citizen”.  Sir Noel Foley was obviously a  very busy man. Don MacKenzie however regretted that Sir Noel Foley had appeared not too interested in the McKenzie family history in “Over the Sea from Skye” –1, perhaps Sir Noel Foley also valued his family’s privacy. However it is interesting to note that his widow Lady Foley, has been a noted immigration history researcher in her own right –1, .
  • daughter Alexina Cook nee McKenzie married Alexander Alick Cook, who was a councillor of Tintenbar Shire since 1923, until his death in 1933.
  • son William McKenzie b.14.5.1852 d. 7.6.1918 Wollongong (obituary) m. Margaret McPhail b abt. 1862 – d. 1933 Wollongong (obituary). In the late 19th – early 20th Century years he made a major contribution to Wollongong’s future direction – a photograph from the Wollongong City Library Collection can be viewed here. He served as an alderman on Wollongong Municipal Council from 1894 till 1905 – and as Mayor in 1902 – 1903. Not surprisingly there are many news media stories of William McKenzie’s life – click here.  He became an alderman on North Illawarra Council and Mayor of Wollongong Council – not surprisingly, his obituary is a wonderful tribute (see also probate) in 1918. William’s wife, Margaret McPhail, as a former Wollongong Council Mayoress, also contributed in her own way to the Wollongong municipality as recognised in her obituary in 1933.Kerrie Anne  Note – Indeed having myself served for over 12 years on Wollongong City Council, I can only pay tribute to the vision of William McKenzie and his dedication to serving the Wollongong community in a range of spheres. William was an advocate for a town water supply in Wollongong, a telephone service in Wollongong and a workers’ train between Wollongong and the northern Illawarra suburbs. And he was innovative in his own butchery businesses.
    • Daughter Jessie Evelyn McKenzie (b 1886 Wollongong – ) – married to William Arthur Lang (view photo) who was an Alderman on North Illawarra Council for 1911-1912 (when he resigned causing a by-election), then an Alderman on Wollongong Municipal Council from 1925 till 1934, and then 1937 – 1944, becoming the Mayor in 1932-1934 and 1937 – 1940; and was the son of North Illawarra Council Alderman Alexander Lang and his wife Ann Caldwell

Alexander McKenzie Jnr

  • Daughter Mary Ann Hicks nee McKenzie married Henry Thomas Hicks, who was elected to the Borough of North Illawarra Council in the Australian Town and Country Journal of October 8 1887. Henry did not contest the 1891 elections.
    • Son Alexander Henry Hicks – nominated for the position of Auditor at the Municipal elections for the North Ward of North Illawarra in Sydney Morning Herald of 26 January 1898. It is uncertain if he was successful in his 1898 bid, however he was elected as an Alderman for Central Ward of North Illawarra Council in 1889. He was also elected as Mayor of North Illawarra Council in 1905. However, whilst Henry had been a farmer, Alex had become a Coal Miner, and would rise from being Corrimal Miners Lodge Delegate to become the Miners Federation President in the Southern Districts. Alexander Henry Hicks seems to have followed in the footsteps of his father Henry Thomas Hicks – very involved in local politics of North Illawarra Council and in the community. Henry Thomas Hicks was an Alderman for North Ward of the North Illawarra Council (1887-1891), and Alexander Hicks was later elected as an Alderman for the Central Ward of the same Council in 1899. Prominent Illawarra Colliery Mining Manager Jacob Carlos Jones was also elected in 1899, representing the Corrimal Progress Assocation. Alexander Hicks would also become Mayor of Northern Illawarra Council. However, whilst Henry had been a farmer, Alex had become a Coal Miner, and would rise from being Corrimal Miners Lodge Delegate to become the Miners Federation President in the Southern Districts.
    • Family of daughter Alice Mary Cook nee Hicks – second wife to Alexander Alick Cook, who was a councillor of Tintenbar Shire since 1923, until his death in 1933.
    • Family of daughter Edith Florence Joy nee Hicks married to John Charles Joy
      • Family of daughter Mary Constance Callcott nee Joy
        • Family of daughter Joan Lois Adams nee Callcott
          • daughter Kerrie Anne Christian nee Adams – like her Great Great Uncle Alexander McKenzie, Kerrie Anne Christian was not only an elected Local Government Alderman/Councillor, but she had also been involved in the Union Movement – as Committee Member and then NSW President of the white collar union, the Association of Professional Scientists of Australia  in 1987. She continued on until 1991-92, remaining as NSW President of Professional Scientists of Australia, after the mergers which created APESMA – Association of Professional Engineers, Scientists and Managers Australia. Kerrie was also the APSA/APESMA Scientists Delegate to the South Coast Labour Council, where she became for a time, a member of the Executive and of the Disputes Committee.
    • Family of daughter Ida McKenzie Webb nee Hicks married to Arthur Frederick AF Webb – Arthur was not directly involved in electoral politics. However as an elected  representative on the NSW Master Builders Association, including a stint as President, during the years of 1937-1951, Arthur did at times become embroiled in political dialogues. Most notable was at the time of Federal Parliament Communist Party Dissolution Bill of 1950. The Federal ALP were pushing to ban Communist Party members from being allowed to be officials in trade unions. Uncle Arthur, with his MBA representative’s hat on, felt that anything that ensured stability in the building game was a good thing. So far nothing has been uncovered to indicate that publically he had said anything really rabid on the subject, or called for the total outlawing of the Communist Party.