Prominent Adelaide City Councillor Robert Simms has been chosen to replace outgoing Senator Penny Wright by the SA Greens.
Simms will be the first out gay man to represent the state in Federal Parliament.
“I think it’s terrific that in this 40th anniversary year of the decriminalisation of homosexual acts that SA is sending an out gay man into the Senate,” Simms told GNN.
“I am grateful to the members of the SA Greens, it’s a great honour to be selected to represent the interests of South Australia.”
Simms has a high profile in South Australia as a human rights activist and has been vocal on the issues of environmental protection, renewable energies and social justice in general.
He recently made a successful bid to have a permanent rainbow walk constructed in the city’s Light Square as a permanent symbol of diversity and pride.
He told GNN he will pursue his passion for social justice in Canberra.
“At the moment the Federal Government under Tony Abbott will stop at nothing to prevent marriage equality,” Simms said.
I promise, I will be a strong voice for diversity and inclusion in the Federal Parliament.”
Simms is no stranger to the Senate, having previously worked as an advisor to Greens Senators Scott Ludlam and Sarah Hanson-Young.
Hanson-Young told Simms at the press conference: “I feel incredibly proud to see you join the Senate team”.
Hanson-Young took to Facebook to extend her congratulations.
“Very excited to have my old friend and advisor Senator Robert Simms join me on the red benches in the Senate,” she posted.
“He’ll be a strong and passionate advocate for all South Australians.
“Congratulations Rob and welcome to the Green team!”