Jodie Harrison has been the Member for Charlestown since 2014. In 2023, she became NSW Minister for Women, Minister for Seniors and Minister for Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault.
Growing up in the south-western suburbs of Sydney, Jodie moved to the Lake Macquarie region in the early 1990s not long after her parents bought a small business in the area.
Her commitment to social justice was developed at home, and enhanced while a member of the Salvation Army during her teens.
For fourteen years she worked at Newcastle City Council in organisational change management, organisational performance and governance roles, becoming a delegate for the United Services Union and the inaugural chairperson of the Council’s Women’s Advisory Panel.
Jodie went on to work for the United Services Union (USU) and subsequently United Voice (now the United Workers Union). While at UWU, she organised early childhood educators to gain proper recognition and wages for the very important work they do.
In 2008, Jodie was elected as a North Ward Councillor on Lake Macquarie City Council. In 2012 she became the popularly elected Mayor of Lake Macquarie as well as being the first female Mayor of the City. She held this position until September 2016.
Her proudest achievements during that time include securing the Council’s financial sustainability and the continued independence of Lake Macquarie as a stand-alone Council during a period of widespread amalgamations.
Since becoming the Member for Charlestown, Jodie has worked hard to gain and keep the trust of her local community. She is keen to listen to the views of people from right across the electorate and welcomes the opportunity to meet with community groups, much preferring to be out in her community than being in her office.
On 5 April 2023, Jodie became NSW Minister for Women, Minister for Seniors and Minister for Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault in the new Minns Labor Government.
Jodie is passionate about the need to provide jobs for people while ensuring a quality lifestyle and maintaining public services.
Jodie is the mother of two children and proudly lives in her electorate.