The Road Ahead : December 2014
QUEENSLAND'S LARGEST CLUB 15 QLD INTERVIEW | LIFESTYLE IMAGE: (OPPOSITE PAGE) QUEENSLAND GOVERNOR MR PAUL DE JERSEY AT FERNBERG AND (ABOVE) WITH THE LIMITED EDITION MINI HE IS 'MINDING' FOR HIS SON. DEC 2014/JAN 2015 THE ROAD AHEAD his best to "support, inspire and enthuse" the community. Hence, the busy round of engagements throughout Queensland, the open-door approach at Fernberg, and in a first, a Government House Facebook page and Twitter account. Like many in similar positions, Mr de Jersey has staff to help with media messaging, but he has embraced social media to the point that in early November he tweeted his first personal message: "Thank you to my first 1000 Twitter followers. You have been wonderful." His personal messages are now signed PdeJ. Mr de Jersey was born in 1948, the third son of school teacher parents Ronald and Moya. As a child he lived at Patrick Estate (outside Lowood in the Lockyer Valley), Coolabunia (near Kingaroy), Maryborough, Longreach and Ipswich. After attending the Church of England Grammar School from 1962 to 1965 in Brisbane, he won a Commonwealth Scholarship to the University of Queensland, graduating in arts and law. He and wife Kaye, a librarian at UQ, married in 1971 and have three adult children -- Carolyn, Alison and David -- and three grandchildren. He practised law for a decade before becoming a Queen's Counsel, and at the age of 36, was appointed a High Court judge, where he made a point of travelling the state, regularly sitting on the bench in regional centres and towns. Then at age 49, he was appointed Chief Justice of Queensland. Throughout, Mr de Jersey was extensively involved in community and charitable activities, particularly medical research, cancer support, legal aid, his old school 'Churchie', and the Anglican Church. "It might sound high-falutin', but I've always had a desire to help people and MINI ENTHUSIAST FROM WAY BACK THE MINI JOHN Cooper Works World Championship 50 edition, complete with autographed bonnet, is glinting in the spring sunshine in full British racing green glory. This is a limited edition that would have the pulse of even the most sedate car enthusiast racing -- and the Queensland Governor is no different. Officially, Paul de Jersey is 'minding' it for his barrister son David, who has bought yet another Mini Cooper S, this time a 2014 model. But the laugh he gives when explaining that he occasionally takes it for a drive 'just to keep the battery ticking over' is a dead giveaway. Like most Aussie blokes, the ability to put this beauty through its paces on the twists and turns of Bardon's hilly terrain is too much of a temptation. And it's not as though Mr de Jersey hasn't had some practice. His first car, back in his teens, was a green Morris Minor, closely followed by a Mini Cooper S, royal blue with white roof. "The Morris Minor was owned by my uncle, my brother, then me," Mr de Jersey said. "Then in my 'impressionable' years, I was fortunate enough to buy a new Cooper S. It was a lovely car, although in those days much more rudimentary in that the heating system involved a diversion of the fumes from the engine into the car. "My son is a Cooper S enthusiast and this year he bought a new one. He very generously let me use the WC50 -- it's wonderful and, in a sense, I've come full circle." It's perfectly fitting then that Mr de Jersey has continued the tradition of previous State Governors by becoming patron of the Royal Queensland Automobile Club -- and that one of his first speaking engagements in the role was the annual RACQ Honorary Life Members Dinner. "I'm very proud of being Patron of Queensland's largest club," Mr de Jersey said. "Not just because it is the largest club, but because it is really emblematic of the generosity, sense of service, and genuine country charm that are features of Queenslanders. "It is important, too, to recognise the Club's commitment to good citizenry, especially through the RACQ Foundation, which has helped community and sporting groups recover from natural disasters. "I've been a continuous member of the RACQ since 1969, and so was my father. He was very proud of his 50 year badge, and displayed it on the bumper bar of his car." it's why I entered the legal profession," Mr de Jersey said. "It was to help people resolve their disputes and differences by resort to a predictable set of legal principles. But inevitably it extended beyond that ... to the broader questions of social justice. "I was privileged to lead the Queensland Cancer Council for 10 years and be involved for about 20 years, and through the Anglican Church, I've seen all sorts of social issues being ventilated. "Now as Governor I think I have a great capacity, in a subtle way, to help people through difficulties."
February March 2015