Sir Richard Kirby

President of the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Commission 1956–1973

Sir Richard Kirby was appointed to the Commonwealth Court of Conciliation and Arbitration in 1947. When the court was split in 1956 he became the first president of the Commonwealth Conciliation and Arbitration Commission. He retired from the Commission due to ill-health in 1973.

Sir Richard was the longest serving president of the Commission. He was born in 1904, the same year as the passage of the Conciliation and Arbitration Act which established the Commonwealth Court of Conciliation and Arbitration. He died on 25 October 2000 at the age of 96.

"The thing that I am proudest of in my life is that I was once privileged to be doing the job that you people so valiantly pursue."
Sir Richard Kirby—message to Australian Industrial Relations Commission members, Centenary of Federation Dinner, 4 June 2000