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Graham Young

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About

Graham Young is chief editor and the publisher of On Line Opinion. He is a writer, and a former vice-president and campaign chairman of the Queensland Liberal Party.

His first love was English Literature, and in 1979 he graduated from the University of Queensland with a BA (Hons Eng Lit).  During his time at University he also started his other great love affair - with liberalism - joining the Young Liberals in 1977.  Around the same time he also started a contract gardening business with the high falutin' name of Arcadia Lawn and Garden.  After graduation he concentrated on building the business up until he subsequently sold it.

In 1982 he gave himself over to politics and spent almost 12 months working for Senator Kathy Martin (now Kathy Sullivan), the same year he was Federal Vice-President (Policy) of the baby Libs.  In 1983 he contested the federal seat of Griffith (Labor's second safest in Queensland) for the Liberal Party. The campaign was unsuccessful, but conducted with gusto.

1983 was an eventful year for the Liberal Party and the country.  1982 was a shocking drought year, hard on farmers, and lawnmowing contractors, and 1983 saw the worst recession since the Great Depression.  For a budding Queensland Liberal Party apparatchik with green fingers it was doubly tough as the party tumbled out of office federally and much more catastrophically, at a state level.

After working pro bono for Ian Prentice the MLA for Toowong in the 1983 state election and failing to save him, Graham turned to the safer world of commerce, working as a finance consultant and lender between the end of 1983 and 1986.  In 1986 he convinced his parents they should set up a small property development company of which he would be chief executive, a role he still fills today.

Property development gave Graham time for passions on the side.  He ran for the Liberal Party twice for the state seat of Greenslopes - first in the Fitzgerald election of 1989, and then again in 1992.  Whilst unsuccessful both times he got a reputation for being able to run good campaigns.  That led to him becoming Queensland Liberal Party Vice-President and Campaign Chairman in 1994, a position he held until 1997. 

It also inadvertently gave Peter Beattie his opportunity to become State Premier. As one of the major strategists of the 1995 coalition state election campaign, Graham ensured the election of the Borbidge/Sheldon government, ending the career of Wayne Goss and giving Peter Beattie his opening. He also oversaw the Queensland end of the successful 1996 federal campaign, and the much less successful Brisbane City Council campaign in 1997.

In 1995 Graham presided over the preselection of Pauline Hanson. In 1996 he was a prime mover in seeking her resignation. In 1998 he publicly criticised the Queensland Liberal Party for deciding to preference One Nation before the ALP in every state seat.

On Line Opinion was first published in April, 1999 from his laptop in his two bedroom unit in Coorparoo, Brisbane. The first edition had five articles and the journal came out monthly. In the month of April 2005 it recored site visits of approximately 230,000 and page views of 700,000 from an estimated 70,000 individuals. It is published every working day of the year.

Graham is divorced, with four children - Sophia, Libby and Andrew who live with their mother in Tarragindi; and Harley, who lives with his mother in Forster, NSW . He spends as much time with his children as he can, which involves a lot of time on the road. He is organist at St Matthews Anglican Church Holland Park; a keen surfer, runner and weight-trainer; and doesn't get to sing nearly enough.

 

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