The electoral district of Lismore is a located in Northern NSW. Lismore covers the entirety of Lismore, Kyogle and Tenterfield council areas, and western parts of the Tweed council area. The seat covers the towns of Lismore, Murwillumbah and Kyogle, and stretches as far west as Mingoola.


According to 2016 Census data, Lismore has:

  • A population of 73,944 (47,047 voters turned out in 2015 out of 53,585 enrolled);

  • A higher than average media age at 45;

  • A lower than average level of highest educational attainment with 15.3% of constituents achieving a Bachelor Degree level and above; and

  • A lower than average median weekly household income of $983 (vs. $1,486 for NSW).


Lismore was first created in 1894 and was later abolished in 1904. Lismore was restored in 1913, but in 1920 it merged with the neighbouring seat of Byron. Lismore was restored in in 1927 and was won by Country Party candidate William Missingham, who had held one of the seats in Byron since 1922. Missingham held the seat until his death in 1933. Since 1927 Lismore has been dominated by the Country/National Party.


National Thomas George succeeded National Bill Rixon in 1999. George has been re-elected four times. In the 2015 election, at the height of the contention around Coal Seam Gas in North Coast seats, The Greens came close to winning Lismore, but George retained the seat on a slim margin. 


The current member, Thomas George, holds the seat for the Coalition but is not seeking reelection.

Austin Curtin (NAT)

Austin Curtin is the National Party candidate for Lismore in the 2019 election. Curtin is a grassroots National party member with no political experience.


Curtin grew up in Lismore and is the son of a Lismore trauma surgeon by the same name. Curtin has been a member of the National party since 2014, and is on the Tregeagle Hall committee. Curtin has degrees in economics and communications, and has worked in agriculture, education and human resources sectors.


Curtin won a community preselection to be selected as the Nationals candidate for Lismore.

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Janelle Saffin (LAB)

Saffin is the Labor Party candidate for Lismore in the 2019 election.


Saffin was a Labor Party member of the Australian House of Representatives seat of Page from the 2007 election until the 2013 election. She served as Government Whip but resigned after an attempt to replace Prime Minister Julia Gillard with the previous Prime Minister Kevin Rudd failed. The attempt failed when Rudd unexpectedly announced that he would not contest the position. Saffin had indicated support for Rudd.


Saffin previously served as a Labor member of the New South Wales Legislative Council from 1995 to 2003.

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Sue Higginson (GRN)

Higginson is The Greens candidate for Lismore in the 2019 election.


Higginson a lawyer, farmer and the former CEO and Principal Solicitor of the Environmental Defenders Office NSW. Higginson has taken on Rio Tinto to court, represented the Wollar 3, the first people to be charged under the NSW Government’s new anti-protester laws and was integral to the setting aside of the Federal Government’s approval of the Adani open cut coal mine.

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