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Bruce Hamilton (public servant)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Bruce Hamilton

Secretary of the Department of Social Services
In office
1 January 1966 – 19 December 1972
Secretary of the Department of Social Security
In office
20 December 1972 – 9 January 1973
Personal details
Leslie Bruce Hamilton

(1911-07-04)4 July 1911
Nook, Tasmania
Died12 June 1989(1989-06-12) (aged 77)
Acton, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory
NationalityAustralia Australian
Spouse(s)Amy Mary Adam
(m. 1936–1975; her death)
Isobel Elizabeth Dahl
(m. 1976–1989; his death)
ParentsGeorge Hamilton and Margaret Ann, née Peters
OccupationPublic servant

Leslie Bruce Hamilton CBE (4 July 1911 – 12 June 1989) was a senior Australian public servant and head of the Department of Social Services (later Social Security) between 1966 and 1973.

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Life and career

Bruce Hamilton was born in Nook, Tasmania on 4 July 1911 to parents George Hamilton and Margaret Ann, née Peters.[1]

Hamilton began his Australian Public Service career in 1939 as Army Paymaster for Tasmania.[2] He moved to Canberra in 1940.[1][2]

On 1 January 1966, Hamilton was appointed Secretary of the Department of Social Services.[3] When the Whitlam Government was elected, the department was abolished and the new Department of Social Security established.[4] Hamilton was Secretary of the new department for less than a month before he retired.[5] During his time as head of the Social Services department, Hamilton broadened the department's scope by introducing legislation for deserted wives, for home care and for emergency relief.[2]

Hamilton's death was on 12 June 1989 at the Royal Canberra Hospital.[1]


Hamilton was made an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in 1966 whilst a First Assistant Secretary at the Department of the Treasury.[6] In June 1972 he was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire during his time as Director-General of the Social Services Department.[7]


  1. ^ a b c Crichton, Pam, "Hamilton, Leslie Bruce (1911–1989)", Australian Dictionary of Biography, Australian National University, archived from the original on 23 April 2014
  2. ^ a b c "Obituary: Bruce Hamilton Menzies' 'two-star general'". The Canberra Times. 12 July 1989. p. 23.
  3. ^ CA 32: Department of Social Services, Central Office, National Archives of Australia, retrieved 23 April 2014
  4. ^ CA 1482: Department of Social Security, Central Office, National Archives of Australia, archived from the original on 13 July 2020, retrieved 23 April 2014
  5. ^ "PS officer to retire". The Canberra Times. 9 January 1973. p. 3.
  6. ^ "Search Australian Honours: HAMILTON, Leslie Bruce",, Australian Government, archived from the original on 23 April 2014
  7. ^ "Search Australian Honours: HAMILTON, Leslie Bruce",, Australian Government, archived from the original on 23 April 2014
Government offices
Preceded by
Herbert Goodes
Secretary of the Department of Social Services
1966 – 1972
Succeeded by
as Secretary of the Department of Social Security
Preceded by
as Secretary of the Department of Social Services
Secretary of the Department of Social Security
1972 – 1973
Succeeded by
Louis Wienholt

This page was last edited on 12 June 2021, at 02:03
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