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Former Member Details

The Hon. Ernest Christian SOMMERLAD, C.B.E (1886 - 1952)

Member Photo
Date of Birth: 30/01/1886
Place of Birth: Tenterfield, New South Wales, Australia
Date of Death: 06/09/1952
Place of Death: Lindfield, New South Wales, Australia
Parliamentary Service
Position Start End Period Notes
Member of the NSW Legislative Council 08 Sep 1932 22 Apr 1934 1 year 7 months 15 days Life Appointment under the Constitution Act. Date of Writ of Summons 8 September 1932
Member of the NSW Legislative Council 23 Apr 1934 06 Sep 1952 18 years 4 months 15 days A Member of the indirectly elected Council 1934 - 1978. Date of Election 21 November 1933 and 18 December 1932. A Member before reconstitution.
Member of Library Committee 01 Sep 1955 01 Sep 1958 3 years 1 day
Political Party Activity
Country Party, foundation member, vice president of Northern electorate council, chairman of New South Wales branch 1950 - 1952.
Community Activity
Qualifications, occupations and interests
Newspaperman. Educated at Leechs Gully Public School, at age eleven left school to work on family farm; at age twenty one went to Sydney to train for the Methodist ministry, Newington College and St Andrews' College, University of Sydney; (B.A., B.Ec.), became a missionary in Fiji in 1911; became a reporter and was appointed as a managing editor in 1919, and subsequently became a proprieter of other newspapers; in 1929 was involved in an amalgamation with Armidale newspapers; became a founder and managing director of Northern Newspapers Pty Limited; established links between country press and radio, director of Northern Broadcasting Pty Limited; member of Australian Provincial Press Association; president of Country Press Association 1927 - 1928, secretary 1940 - 1945; director of Australian United Press Limited from 1939, appointed as chairman of New South Wales branch in 1952; first treasurer of New States Movement; chairman of publicity committee 1938 sesquicentenary; vice president of National Roads and Motorists Association; president of Glen Innes Horticultural Society in 1927; trustee of Public Library of New South Wales 1930 - 1952; helped to establish Helen Keller Hostel, Woollahra; author in 1917 and 1922 and 1950.
Military Service
2nd Australian Infantry Forces 1941 until 1945.
Honours Received
Commander of the British Empire (CBE) in 1938
Membership of other Parliaments & Offices Held
Local Government Activity
Son of John Henry Sommerlad, farmer. Married Mildred Alice Vaughan on 15 March 1913 at Concord, and had issue, 2 daughters and 2 sons. Funeral at Northern Suburbs crematorium from Lindfield Methodist church.
Additional Information