Olympian is Australia's first Aboriginal woman in parliament
SYDNEY (AFP) - Former Olympian Nova Peris has become the first Aboriginal woman elected to Australia's national parliament, a welcome achievement for the centre-left Labor Party which lost power in the polls.
Employment and workplace relations minister Bill Shorten, who is considered the frontrunner to become Labor's next leader, said despite the loss, there had been a range of good candidates elected to serve, including Ms Peris.
"That's a good accomplishment," he said on Sunday of her election to represent the Northern Territory in the Senate. "And it backs up our accomplishment in terms of jobs for indigenous Australians."
Olympian Peris won gold in field hockey at the 1996 Atlanta Games before switching to athletics to win gold in the 200m and 4x100m relay at the Commonwealth Games in Kuala Lumpur in 1998.