Vicki Chapman: South Australia's first female deputy premier and attorney general in 2018
Adelaide University salutes notable law school graduate Vickie Chapman, first South Australian female deputy premier/attorney general.
Vickie Chapman became South Australia’s first female deputy premier and attorney general in 2018 with the election of the Steven Marshall state Liberal government.
Born on Kangaroo Island, she attended Parndana Area School and later Pembroke School before graduating as a barrister in 1979 from Adelaide University law school.
Her father Ted was a Liberal member in the South Australian House of Assembly and a member of Steele-Hall’s Liberal Movement moderate faction in the 1970s and agriculture minister in David Tonkin’s Liberal state government.
After trying for the federal seat of Barker in 1998, Vicki Chapman won preselection (against Liberal minister Michael Armitage) for the safe eastern-suburbs Liberal seat of Bragg in 2001 and has held it comfortably at elections since 2002. She immediately joined the Liberal opposition front bench, with the shadow portfolios of education and children's services. She was touted as a future Liberal leader but also seen as continuing the party’s factional battles from the Liberal Movement days.
Chapman was elected deputy in 2006 to Iain Evans, from the party’s conservative faction. With strong backing from moderates federal Sturt MP Christopher Pyne and former premier Dean Brown, Chapman kept the deputy post when Martin Hamilton-Smith ousted Evans as leader in 2007. Chapman ran against Hamilton-Smith for the leadership in 2009, but received only 10 votes, against Hamilton-Smith's 11, with Evans abstaining.
Conservative Isobel Redmond was elected deputy leade to replace Chapman. When Hamilton-Smith stepped aside later that year, Chapman again ran for the leadership but received only nine votes against Redmond's 13. After a third Liberal election loss in 2010, when she was linked to a possible challenge to Redmond, Chapman voted for Hamilton-Smith as deputy leader against Evans.
Chapman’s second term as deputy leader was solidified when she ruled out a challenge to new Liberal leader Marshall in 20