NSW Police Minister
After the March 2003 election John Watkins was appointed as Minister for Police. He replaced Michael Costa and was sworn in to the new role on April 2, 2003.
John Watkins, a fourth generation resident of the Ryde area, was born in Sydney in 1955, and has lived most of his life in the Ryde local area. He is married to Deborah and they have four children.
He graduated in Arts and Law from the University of NSW, later completing a Diploma of Education and a Masters Degree in English at Macquarie University.
John worked as a teacher for 16 years, until his election to Parliament in 1995. He taught mostly English, Legal Studies and Physical Education concentrating on HSC subjects for year 12 students.
He served as a Councillor on the Hunters Hill Council between 1987 and 1991 and was Deputy Mayor of that Council for a year.
John entered State Parliament as the Member for Gladesville in the March 1995 NSW election. After the seat of Gladesville was abolished, he became the Member for Ryde in the 1999 State election. He was re-elected in March 2003.
After his election to Parliament, John served on several Parliamentary Committees including the ICAC Parliamentary Committee, the Parliamentary Ethics Committee and the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Small Business. He was on the HSC Review Committee, the Upper Parramatta River Trust and the Ministerial Advisory Committee on eating disorders and body image and how they affect the physical and mental health of young people.
After the March 1999 election, John was appointed as Minister for Fair Trading and Minister for Sport and Recreation. In January 2001 he was given the additional portfolio of Minister for Corrective Services. In November 2001 John was appointed Minister for Education and Training.
John has worked closely with local Police from the Eastwood and Gladesville Local Area Commands since his election in 1995. His brother is currently serving as a Duty Officer with NSW Police.