Prime Minister Kevin Rudd
Prime Minister Kevin Rudd Blainey Woodham

Kevin Rudd in profile: Is he the man to lead Australia?

KEVIN Rudd says he's a changed man since being dumped by his own party and spending years in the political wilderness.

There are some that don't buy it - including within his own party.

But most Labor MPs are resigned to the fact that the former diplomat remains Labor's only hope of beating the LNP and Tony Abbott.

Certainly, recent opinion polls bear testimony to that. 

Mr Rudd is well known for working extremely hard - and expecting senior public servants and ministerial colleagues to do the same.

In his first stint as PM, he had some major blunders, including his policies on refugees, which recently he reversed with the controversial PNG solution.

It has been seen by many as more right wing than Tony Abbott would have ever dared.

The PM was also recently forced to apologise for the deaths of young men involved in the government's bungled home insulation scheme.

Mr Rudd has been known for his outbursts of anger, including repeatedly dropping the f-bomb as he prepared to do a video message in Mandarin.


But in recent times, he has promised a more gentle - and conciliatory Kevin - moving away from the style he was well known for when he was chief of staff to former Queensland Premier Wayne Goss and later the state's top bureaucrat.

He's also had plenty of changes of heart - including on the subject of gay marriage - putting him at odds with his sister, a devout Christian.

His brother, Greg Rudd, is running as an Independent in the Senate, and admits he will only vote for Kevin out of family loyalty.

Mr Rudd's personal style will be the subject of plenty of attack ads during the 2013 federal election campaign.

We can expect to see clips of Wayne Swan describing his former Nambour High colleague's tenure as 'dysfunctional' and Tony Burke describing his office paralysed by chaos.

But watch Kevin Rudd in public and there's no doubting his popularity.

He is swarmed by school students like a rock star and even police line up to be photographed with the high flying 'Kevin 747'

One of Mr Rudd's proudest achievements is the apology to the Stolen Generations as well as ratifying the Kyoto protocol.

But with jobs and the economy the big focus - as well as rising living costs - talk of climate change and carbon tax is about as popular as opening Australia's doors to asylum seekers.

Kevin Rudd at Central Queensland Livestock Exchange.
Kevin Rudd at Central Queensland Livestock Exchange.


Full name: Kevin Michael Rudd

Born: 21 September 1957, Nambour, Queensland

Education: Eumundi Primary School; Marist Brothers College Ashgrove; Nambour State High School; The Australian National University (BA Hons) (1981)Eumundi Primary School, Marist College Ashgrove & Nambour State High School in Queensland; Australian National University (BA Hons 1981)

Employment: Queensland Public Service 1988 - 95; Diplomat 1981-88; Consultant 1996-98

Memberships: Roman Catholic Church

Marriage: 17 November 1981, St Johns Anglican Church Canberra

Children: Jessica (1984), Nicholas (1986) and Marcus (1993)

Party: Australian Labor Party

Terms as PM: 3 December 2007 - 24 June 2010; 27 June 2013 -

Terms as MP: House of Representatives: 10 November 1998 - (Griffith); Leader of the Opposition (4 December 2006 - November 2007)

Portfolios: Minister for Foreign Affairs: 14 September 2010 - 22 February 2012

Political memberships:

Australian Labor Party (1975 - )



Australia's 26th Prime Minister

Kevin Rudd and Robert Menzies are the only first term prime ministers to be removed by their own Party

One of the 16 prime ministers in office for less than three years

The fourth prime minister from Queensland, and the first in six decades - see Andrew Fisher, Arthur Fadden and Frank Forde

At 50, the fifth youngest Australian prime minister

Descended from convict Mary Wade, transported to New South Wales in 1789 at the age of 11

First prime minister with a woman (Julia Gillard) as his deputy

Dubbed 'Kevin '07' in his election campaign - and 'Kevin 747' after leaving office

Thérèse Rein is the second prime ministerial wife with a university degree; the first was Bettina Gorton

Source: National Archives of Australia