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Henry Gordon Coleman (1913–1997)

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Henry (Gordon) Coleman (1913-1997) journalist, trade union leader 

Birth: 20 October 1913 at Sandgate, Queensland, son of native-born parents Norman Lawry Coleman (1889-1973), draper, later traveller, and Amy Galt, née Allison (1891-1968). Marriages: (1) 1934 at Dubbo, New South Wales, to Thelma Grace Stroud. They had three sons. The marriage ended in divorce. (2) 1961 in Sydney to Peggy Russell. They had two daughters. Death: 29 September 1997 in a nursing home at Shoalhaven, NSW. 

  • Father was a manager at Townsville in 1925. Family moved to Dubbo by late 1920s. Gordon joined Daily Guardian in Sydney in 1929. Enlisted in the Australian Military Citizen Forces in April 1930 but was discharged on 12 March 1931 [probably as under age].
  • Later employed by National Advocate (Bathurst), Evening Post (Dubbo, which ceased publication in early 1930s), The Dispatch (Dubbo), The Liberal (Dubbo), the Newcastle Morning Herald and the Sydney Morning Herald (from about 1948).
  • In Dubbo was president of the district ambulance committee, secretary of the war agricultural committee and of the Cooperative Terminating Building Society Ltd, honorary secretary to the Rugby League and in February 1944 stood for election to Dubbo municipal council.
  • Moved to Sydney and was secretary of the NSW provincial district of the Australian Journalists' Association (AJA) from 1947 to 1948. Elected to NSW district committee of the AJA and became vice-president. Elected NSW district secretary AJA, NSW Journalists' Union from 1953 until he resigned due to illness in 1973.
  • Honorary secretary and licensee of the Sydney Journalists' Club from 1953.
  • AJA Federal Councillor. AJA gold honour badge holder in 1955. Life membership gold badge, Journalists' Club.
  • In 1953 initiated with others court action for first time in thirty-eight years. Pioneered award coverage for journalists in State jurisdiction. Shared in Federal Award negotiations and Court proceedings and joint advocate with the former general secretary (Syd Pratt) in the 1953-55 metropolitan award.
  • A prolific journalist, many articles signed as ‘H. Gordon Coleman’.
  • Cause of death: cerebro-vascular accident, cerebrovascular disease and Parkinsons disease.

Sources
Labor Year Book, 1973, p 231.

Additional Resources

Citation details

'Coleman, Henry Gordon (1913–1997)', People Australia, National Centre of Biography, Australian National University, https://peopleaustralia.anu.edu.au/biography/coleman-henry-gordon-33244/text41479, accessed 21 April 2024.

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