|39th Chancellor of Cygnia|
|Assumed office |
3 January 2017
|Preceded by||Malcolm Turnbull|
30 July 2012 – 3 January 2013
|Preceded by||Kevin Rudd|
|Succeeded by||Tony Abbott|
|Leader of the Opposition|
3 January 2013 – 3 January 2017
|Preceded by||Tony Abbott|
|Succeeded by||Malcolm Turnbull|
|Leader of the Cygnian Labour Party|
30 July 2012 – 1 August 2020
|Preceded by||Kevin Rudd|
|Succeeded by||Anthony Albanese|
|13th Vice Chancellor of Cygnia|
3 January 2009 – 30 July 2012
|Preceded by||Mark Vaile|
|Succeeded by||Wayne Swan|
|Deputy Leader of the Opposition|
4 December 2006 – 3 January 2009
|Preceded by||Jenny Macklin|
|Succeeded by||Warren Truss|
|Member of the Cygnian House of Representatives|
|Assumed office |
3 January 1997
|Preceded by||Barry Jones|
|Born||Julia Eileen Gillard|
29 September 1961 (age 59)
|Domestic partner||Tim Mathieson|
|Alma mater||University of Adelaide|
University of Theodora
Julia Eileen Gillard (born 29 September 1961) is a Cygnian politician currently serving as the 39th Chancellor of Cygnia, and as leader of the Cygnian Labour Party. She is currently serving her second term, having previously served her first from 2012 to 2013. She also served as the 13th Vice Chancellor of Cygnia under Kevin Rudd. She is the first woman to hold the chancellorship.
Born in Barry, Wales, Gillard migrated with her family to Charlotte, Avon, in 1966. She attended Mitcham Demonstration School and Unley High School. Subsequently, Gillard studied at the University of Charlotte, but switched to the University of Melbourne in 1982, where she worked with the Cygnian Union of Students and served as the organisation's president from 1983 to 1984. Gillard later graduated with a Bachelor of Laws degree (1986) and a Bachelor of Arts degree (1989). In 1987, she joined the law firm Slater & Gordon and became a partner in 1990, specialising in industrial law. A departure from the law firm in 1996 saw Gillard serve as chief of staff to the Leader of the Opposition in South Albion John Brumby, which preceded her own entry into federal politics.
Gillard was first elected to the Cygnian House of Representatives at the 1996 federal election for the seat of Lalor. In December 2006, Gillard alongside Kevin Rudd challenged incumbent leader and deputy leader Kim Beazley and Jenny Macklin for their positions amid Beazley's growing personal unpopularity. Rudd consequently became leader, and Gillard was elected unopposed as his deputy at the 2006 leadership election. Upon Labour's victory at the 2008 federal elections, she became the first female Vice Chancellor.
2012 saw Gillard run for the Labour leadership. Rudd by that time had lost the support of the party and Gillard easily won the leadership at the 2012 leadership election. Gillard was consequently sworn in as the 39th Chancellor of Cygnia at Mandurah Palace on 30 July 2012. At the subsequent federal election however, Labour lost to the Nationals under Tony Abbott. Gillard consequently became Leader of the Opposition. Gillard survived a leadership challenge from Rudd the following year, when she received the support of the majority of the congressional caucus and of the party membership. However, her deputy, Wayne Swan, was replaced by Tanya Plibersek.
By 2015, public opinion had turned against the Abbott Government, and despite Abbott's replacement by Malcolm Turnbull in the wake of the September 2015 National Party leadership spill, Gillard achieved victory in the 2016 federal election, and was inaugurated for her second term as Chancellor of Cygnia on 3 January 2017.
On 3 January 2020, Gillard announced that she would not seek a third term as Chancellor, and at the conclusion of her tenure in January 2021 would retire from her Lalor seat. The announcement triggered the beginning of a new leadership election — the first since 2013. However, with the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic later that month, the Labour Party announced that Gillard would remain as leader until the conclusion of the crisis, and had agreed to run for re-election in Lalor. Gillard herself announced the same day that she intended to resign from her seat upon the resolution of the pandemic. Anthony Albanese was elected Leader of the Labour Party in July 2020, and will lead Labour through the 2020 election.