Brisbane's Lord Mayors

Brisbane's first Lord Mayor was William Jolly in 1925. Find out about Brisbane's former Lord Mayors.

Table of previous lord mayors and the years of their terms.

Lord Mayor

Term as Lord Mayor

William Alfred Jolly1925-1931
Archibald Watson1931-1931
John William Greene1931-1934
Alfred James Jones1934-1940
John Beals Chandler1940-1952
Frank Edwards Roberts1952-1955
Sir Thomas Reginald Groom1955-1961
Clem Jones1961-1975
Bryan Vincent Walsh1975-1976
Frank Northey Sleeman1976-1982
William Charles Roy Harvey1982-1985
Sallyanne Atkinson1985-1991
James Gerard (Jim) Soorley1991-2003
Kieran Owen Timothy (Tim) Quinn2003-2004
Campbell Newman2004-2011
Graham Quirk2011-2019
Adrian Schrinner2019 - current

William Alfred Jolly

Lord Mayor: 1925-1931 (resigned 23 February 1931)

William's background was in accountancy. He was director of the Queensland National Bank, which later became the National Bank of Australia.

He was instrumental in developing high-grade arterial road systems, drainage expansion, purchasing extensive parklands, construction of the Grey Street Bridge, determination of the university site and the success of the Greater Brisbane Scheme.

Archibald Watson

Lord Mayor: 24 February 1931 to 11 May 1931

  • Alderman (Toowong Ward): 1925-1931 (first meeting 18 March 1925)
  • Vice-Mayor: July 1926-1928, 1928-1931
  • Lord Mayor: 24 February 1931 to 11 May 1931
  • Served on the Finance, Tenders and Stores Committee: 1925, 1926, 1927, 1928-1930
  • Chairman of Parks, Recreation, Town Planning and Housing Committee: 1925
  • General Purposes Committee: 1925
  • Parks and Recreations Committee: 1926 (chairman), 1927 (chairman)
  • Transit Committee: 1926 (chairman), 1927 (chairman)
  • Licensing, Markets and Miscellaneous Committee: 1926, 1927
  • Resumptions Committee: 1926, 1927
  • Chairman of the Transit, Electric Light and Power House Committee: 1928-1931
  • Water Supply and Sewerage Committee: 1929, 1931

John William Greene

Lord Mayor: 1931-1934

John William Greene served on the following:

  • Alderman of the Wynnum Town Council: 1921-1924, 1924-1925
  • Finance Committee: 1924, 1925
  • Works Committee: 1924, 1925
  • Health Committee: 1924, 1925
  • Legislative Committee: 1924, 1925
  • Alderman (Wynnum Ward): 1931-1934
  • Executive Committee: 1931-1934 (finance)

Alfred James Jones

Lord Mayor: 1934-1940

Jones was a teacher, selector, drover, coach driver, storekeeper and goldminer before turning to politics.

  • Legislative Assembly seat of Burnett for the Labor Party in 1904
  • He won Maryborough in 1915, resigned the seat in 1917
  • In 1917 he became leader of the government in the Legislative Council and was appointed as secretary for mines
  • Reappointed to Council in 1920 after unsuccessfully contesting Carnarvon
  • Won Paddington in 1922 and held it until Labor was defeated in 1929

John Beals Chandler

Lord Mayor: 1940-1952

  • Establishment and Co-ordination Committee: 1940-1952 (Chair)
  • Finance Committee: 1940-1952 (Chair)
  • Chairman, Taringa Shire Council: 1925
  • Member of the Electrical Federation (Queensland) 1925-1926

Frank Edwards Roberts

Lord Mayor: 1952-1955

He was chairman of the Establishment and Co-Ordination Committee from 1952 to 1955 and chairman of the Finance Committee from 1952 to 1955.


Sir Thomas Reginald Groom

Lord Mayor: 1955-1961

  • Alderman (Ithaca Ward), Brisbane City Council: 1943-1946 (retired 17 May 1946)
  • Sherwood Ward: 1952-1955
  • Transit and Electricity Committee: 1943-1946
  • Finance Committee: 1952-1961 (chairman from 1955)
  • Establishment and Co-Ordination Committee chairman: 1955-1961


Clem Jones

Lord Mayor: 1961-1975

Clem Jones was Lord Mayor during a period that saw Brisbane grow from a sleepy country town to a vibrant subtropical city. During his tenure as Lord Mayor, he was also curator of the 'Gabba cricket ground.

His services to the community have been recognised by:

  • The Order of Australia in 1976
  • Honorary doctorates from the University of Queensland
  • Queenslander of the Year in 1990
  • Keys to the City of Brisbane in 1998
  • James D. Richardson Honour Award from The Australia Lions Foundation for his service to the city's youth
  • His contribution to sport was recognised with Associate Membership to the Australian Sporting Hall of Fame


Bryan Vincent Walsh

Lord Mayor: 1975-1976

Formerly a schoolteacher, he joined Ashgrove Branch of the Australian Labor Party in 1949.

Frank Northey Sleeman

Lord Mayor: 1976-1982

  • Alderman (Nudgee Ward), Brisbane City Council: 1961-1964, 1964-1967, 1967-1970, 1970-1973
  • Banyo Ward: 1973-1976
  • Served on the Works Committee: 1961-1964
  • Finance Committee: 1964-1976
  • Establishment and Co-Ordination Committee: 1976-1982

William Charles Roy Harvey

Lord Mayor: 1982-1985

  • Alderman, (Kedron Ward), Brisbane City Council: 1952-1955, 1955-1958, 1958-1961, 1961-1964, 1964-1967, 1967-1970, 1970-1973
  • Mitchelton Ward: 1979-1982
  • Vice Mayor: 1979-1982
  • Served on the Finance Committee: 1953-1955, 1979-1982 (chairman)
  • Health Committee: 1955-1957
  • Works Committee: 1957-1961
  • Establishment and Co-Ordination Committee: 1961-1973, 1979-1982, 1982-1985 (chairman)
  • Transit and Electricity Committee: 1961-1973 (chairman)

Sallyanne Atkinson

Lord Mayor: 1985-1991

Sallyanne Atkinson was a former Australian Senior Trade Commissioner to Paris, and former chairman of Queensland Tourism.

With a billion-dollar Budget and a workforce of 7000, she was responsible for major structural and fiscal reforms in Council and a change of image and attitude for the city.

James Gerard (Jim) Soorley

Lord Mayor: 1991-2003

Jim Soorley was a former Catholic priest with a background in management and community involvement. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology from Sydney's Macquarie University and a Master of Arts in Organisational Development from Loyola University in Chicago, USA.

His achievements involve transforming Council into an efficient customer service oriented organisation.

Kieran Owen Timothy (Tim) Quinn

Lord Mayor: 2003-2004

Tim Quinn was Deputy Mayor of Brisbane since 1997 and chairperson of Brisbane City Council’s Urban Planning Committee from 1991.

Tim’s goal was to deliver a prosperous, clean and green city of opportunity for Brisbane residents. His priorities included the Green Bridge Link and the North-South Bypass Tunnel.

Campbell Newman

Lord Mayor: 2004-2011

A civil engineer by profession, Campbell Newman had a 13 year career as an Australian Army engineer before retiring at the end of 1993.

He then worked as a management consultant for a number of large Australian companies and prior to entering council, he operated his own consulting firm.

Campbell was elected as Lord Mayor on 27 March 2004.

His achievements include increasing the number of buses and ferries, improving suburban roads and building and completing two new bridges across the Brisbane River and the Clem 7 (North-South Bypass) Tunnel. He also opened three new swimming pools, a library and started planting trees for the 2 Million Tree Project.

Graham Quirk

Lord Mayor: 2011-2019

Graham Quirk entered Brisbane City Council when elected as Alderman for Rochedale Ward in 1985 at the age of 27.

He was elected as Lord Mayor on 7 April 2011, following the resignation of Campbell Newman.

Graham's goal was to make Brisbane a smart-thinking, easy-living, world-class New World City. His top priorities as Lord Mayor included tackling traffic congestion, improving public transport, enhancing our environment and continuing with the city's flood recovery process.

Last updated:

Brisbane City Council acknowledges this Country and its Traditional Custodians. We pay our respects to the Elders, those who have passed into the dreaming; those here today; those of tomorrow.