• Entry type: Person
  • Entry ID: AWE0231

Bashir, Marie

(1930 – )
  • Born 1 January, 1930, Narrandera New South Wales Australia
  • Occupation Governor, Professor, Psychiatrist


Of Lebanese descent, Marie Bashir became the first woman to be appointed Governor of New South Wales in March 2001. She was succeeded in the role in 2014 by General The Hon. David Hurley AC, DSC.

Bashir’s appointment was welcomed by both sides of politics and commended as “an inspired choice” because Bashir would be “a powerful advocate for the powerless”. In that role, Bashir departed from past practice. For Australian aborigines, Bashir launched an indigenous health initiative to support indigenous medicine and nursing students as well as supporting the progress of reconciliation. On the very day of her inauguration, Bashir agreed to become Patron of the Gay and Lesbian Counselling Service, which addresses mental and social issues in the LGBT community.

Prior to her appointment she had a long and distinguished career in medicine. She was Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Sydney. Bashir became an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO) in 1988 for her service to medicine, particularly in the field of adolescent mental heath. In 2001, the year she was sworn in as Governor, she was appointed a Companion of the Order of Australia (AC).

Throughout her career, Bashir combined work and family life. She was nominated Mother of the Year in 1971. She was married to Sir Nicholas Shehadie AC OBE, who passed away in 2018.

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