Alister Henskens portrait
Alister Henskens portrait

About Alister

Alister is the Member for Wahroonga in the Legislative Assembly of the NSW Parliament (formerly named Ku-ring-gai). He has been the local Member since 2015.

Alister is the Shadow Attorney General, Shadow Special Minister of State, and Manager of Opposition Business in the Legislative Assembly.

In the previous NSW Liberal Government Alister was the Minister for Enterprise, Investment and Trade, Minister for Sport, Minister for Science, Innovation and Technology, Minister for Skills and Training, and the Leader of the House in the Legislative Assembly.

Previously Alister served as the Minister for Families, Communities and Disability Services in the NSW Government, as the Cabinet Secretary in the NSW Government and as the Parliamentary Secretary for Finance. He has been the Chair of several Parliamentary Committees, including the Transport and Infrastructure Committee.

He is deeply committed to keeping the Wahroonga Electorate a great place to live, whether it is to grow up, be educated, have a family or retire.

Alister’s family have lived in the area since 1996 and it is where his children attended school.

He was born, raised and schooled in Newcastle NSW.  Alister’s father immigrated to Australia from the Netherlands in 1951 while his mother was born and raised in Australia and completed her secondary education in the area.

Alister has degrees in Economics and Law from the University of Sydney and a Master of Laws degree from the University of Toronto, Canada, where he studied under a Rotary Foundation Scholarship.

After completing his studies, Alister was a lawyer for 27 years, first as a solicitor and then as a barrister, being appointed as a Senior Counsel or SC in 2011. 

As a barrister, he worked principally in the areas of general commercial, insolvency, banking, defamation, and building and construction law. 

He was also Counsel Assisting the Equine Influenza Inquiry in 2007.

Prior to entering Parliamentary service, Alister was involved in a number of community activities including as a director of Basketball NSW, a coach and manager of club and representative sporting teams and President of his local Public School’s P & C.  Alister also held various positions in the local branches of the Liberal Party.

In his spare time, Alister enjoys playing the guitar, listening to music and reading.