Ray Stevens (politician)
Raymond Alexander Stevens (born 1 February 1953) is an Australian politician who is the Leader of Opposition Business in the Legislative Assembly of Queensland.
|Leader of the House of Queensland|
30 March 2012 – 16 February 2015
|Preceded by||Judy Spence|
|Succeeded by||Stirling Hinchliffe|
|Member of the Queensland Parliament for Mermaid Beach|
|Assumed office |
9 September 2006
|Preceded by||Bob Quinn|
|Born||1 February 1953|
|Political party||Liberal National Party|
|Occupation||Accountant, small business owner|
Born in Townsville, Stevens is married with two children. He received a Bachelor of Arts in Finance and Economics from James Cook University and Macquarie University, and was admitted to the Australian Association of Accountants in 1974, being employed by Price Waterhouse in Sydney. He returned to the family station, "Doncaster" in Richmond, before moving to the Gold Coast in 1979. He ran local businesses in the area and was a councillor on Albert Shire Council from 1988 to 1994, serving as Mayor in 1994. After the amalgamation of Albert and Gold Coast, he was mayor of the latter from 1995 to 1997.
Stevens, as member of the Liberal Party, was elected to state parliament in 2006 as the member for Robina, succeeding former state Liberal leader Bob Quinn. At this time he was also appointed as the Shadow Minister for Public Works and Housing from 2006–2009, with a brief stint from 2007–2008 as the Shadow Minister for Information and Communication Technology.
In 2008, Stevens joined the new Liberal National Party with the rest of his party. The redistribution ahead of the 2009 state election renamed his seat to Mermaid Beach; he was re-elected. And from 2009–2010 he was the Shadow Minister for Tourism and Fair trading, before he continued in that role as the Shadow Minister for Tourism and Racing from 2010–2011. From early 2011 until the election in 2012 Stevens was the Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Racing.
On 11 September 2012, Stevens sparked racism claims after using the term "Jihad Jackie" in Parliament to describe opposition spokeswoman Jackie Trad (herself of Catholic-Lebanese heritage). While Stevens withdrew the remark in Parliament upon urging by house speaker, he staunchly maintained using the word Jihad to describe someone of Arabic heritage, on 11 September, was nothing he needed to apologise for. He subsequently said Trad needed to "harden up" and had a "glass jaw".
At a pre-polling booth on 21 January 2015, Stevens was filmed having a bizarre reaction to a journalist asking him questions about a $100 million sky rail project from Mudgeeraba to Springbrook. Stevens had previously stated he had approval from the Integrity Commissioner, but when the journalist asked Stevens for the Commissioner's advice to be released, Stevens refused to answer. When the journalist did not back down and asked how much he could make from the development, Mr Stevens then began to wave his hands and arms up and down in the journalist's face. "That Mermaid Ray really lost the plot, but without saying a word," Donovan said. "He started doing a dance and gyrating around — this is a Minister of the Crown, we're talking about, let me remind you."
- "Raymond Alexander (Ray) Stevens". Retrieved 5 February 2009.
- "Raymond Alexander (Ray) Stevens". Retrieved 14 August 2015.
- "Ray Stevens' 'Jihad' remark about Jackie Trad sparks Queensland Parliament racism claim". news.com.au. 12 September 2012. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
- "Qld MP 'aggressive and juvenile' when asked about controversial development". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 21 January 2015. Retrieved 18 June 2016.
| Leader of the House of the Legislative Assembly of Queensland
|Parliament of Queensland|
| Member for Robina
|New seat|| Member for Mermaid Beach