Pittwater, Sydney, Australia
Headland. Photoart by Greg Tingle
is an electoral district of the Legislative Assembly
in the Australian state of New South Wales. Located
in Sydney's north-east, it is 175.32 km²
in size, and comprises the local government area
of Pittwater Council and parts of Warringah Council.
There are approximately 43,000 registered voters.
includes the suburbs or localities of Avalon,
Bayview, Bilgola, Church Point, Cottage Point,
Duffys Forest, Elanora Heights, Ingleside, Ku-ring-gai
Chase, Mona Vale, Narrabeen, Newport, North Narrabeen,
Palm Beach, Scotland Island, Terrey Hills, and
current Member of Parliament for Pittwater is
Rob Stokes of the Liberal Party of Australia.
He was elected on 24 March 2007 for a four-year
electoral district of Pittwater was created in
1973, and quickly developed a reputation as a
safe Liberal seat. The first member elected to
the seat was Sir Robert William Askin, then Premier
of New South Wales.
seat was famously held by New South Wales Opposition
Leader John Brogden until his dramatic resignation
in 2005. The Liberal stranglehold on the seat
was lost in the resulting by-election when the
Mayor of Pittwater Council, Alex McTaggart, standing
as an Independent candidate, defeated the Liberal
Paul Nicolau in a landslide.
McTaggart lost the seat in the 2007 general election
on March 24, with new Liberal candidate Rob Stokes
comfortably regaining the seat for his party.
Stokes won on the primary vote alone, gaining
just over 50%. After preferences, his share was
61% to McTaggart's 39%. Stokes won every booth
in the district with the exception of Scotland
Island, whose few hundred offshore voters traditionally
buck the trend.
Stokes was an environmental lawyer and lecturer
at Macquarie University, as well as a trainer
at Mona Vale Surf Life-Saving Club. He is married
to Sophie and they have two young children.
the election, Rob Stokes established his electorate
office in Mona Vale. His first policy advisor
and press secretary was former ABC and BBC journalist
Peter Heaton-Jones, who left in December 2007
when selected as a Conservative Party candidate
in the UK. He was replaced by Fabia Silvester,
head of the Pittwater Young Liberals. The electorate
office manager is Jill Dubois, who held the same
post under previous Liberal member John Brogden.
It's one of several links between the two men;
Stokes was Brogden's policy advisor, and the two
families are close friends. Rob Stokes paid tribute
to John Brogden in his inaugural speech to the
NSW Parliament on 31 May 2007. (Credit: