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Valedictory statements: Retirement of clerk

Mr HIBBINS (Prahran) (By leave) — I would like to say a few words on behalf of myself and the member for Melbourne. It is safe to say, Ray, that you have been here a lot longer than we have, and in fact a lot longer than most members. One of our first questions to you was: 'How does one actually become the Clerk, and how does one get their head around these particular and peculiar rules, procedures and precedents while at the same time carrying out your duties of providing advice to us and ensuring the orderly running of the house and the Parliament?'. Having been here just a short time, I can say that not only have you done that but you have done it incredibly well. I think yours is a really great story of commitment to the public service, because whilst members are in the limelight and seeking the limelight, it is you and your team who are really the unsung heroes of this Parliament in making sure that our Parliament and our democracy work.

I say thank you for your assistance and advice in navigating this place, not just as a new member but as a new party in this place. The member for Melbourne, who is on maternity leave, has asked me to personally pass on her thanks and congratulations on a wonderful career and her appreciation of your clear-headed and fair-minded advice and your welcoming and open manner when we first arrived in Parliament as the first Greens in the lower house. You will be missed, and we both wish you well in your retirement and in your future endeavours.

Honourable members applauded.