8 November 2013
Commissioner Alastair Macdonald retires today. The President of the Commission, Justice Roger Boland, at an informal ceremony to mark the occasion of his retirement held at the Commission on 31 October 2013, said, in part:
�Commissioner Macdonald is retiring three months short of 12 years with the Commission. He took up his appointment on 4 February 2002 and retires next Friday, 8 November 2013 on reaching 65.Prior to his appointment Commissioner Macdonald was with the Federated Clerks Union, latterly known as the ASU, Clerical and Administrative Branch. Alastair served the Clerks' Union for 29 years as an organiser, industrial officer and senior industrial officer. Alastair came to the Commission not only with a background of nearly 30 years as a union official and the wealth of experience he accumulated in that role, but also he was a qualified Australian lawyer and possessed a Masters degree in Labour Law and Relations. He continued the long tradition of Commissioners being appointed to the Commission with a strong practical background in industrial relations and more often than not, in the law as well. I had more to do with Alastair from 2008 onwards after my appointment as President. He did all that was asked of him and more. He took his role seriously and carried out his duties with diligence and dedication and a strong sense of fair play. Alastair is a naturally quiet man; not given to boasting or hyperbole, but rather goes about his business with a sense of purpose and, importantly, delivers.Alastair is, until Friday of next week, also a member of the Fair Work Commission. Whilst his appointment to that body was on a shared basis initially he has, since 2011, worked full time for the federal Commission whilst remaining a member of the NSW Commission. I am told he undertook the federal work with the same dedication he had applied to his State responsibilities and I am sure that is right. He has also had the additional responsibility as Chairperson of the Clothing Trades Industrial Committee, which he has administered competently and efficientlyRetirement is a new phase in one's life albeit a phase that is often not given much thought until it becomes a reality. Alastair is still a relatively young man and with his background and connections, still has a great deal to offer in the field he has occupied for over 40 years. I cannot imagine his retirement will be wasted.On behalf of you all, I wish Commissioner Macdonald and his partner, Fiona, a happy, interesting and rewarding retirement.� Industrial Registrar.