Joseph Anthony Bodkin

Labourer, Union Organiser

Terms served on Council

Title Council From To
Alderman City of Sydney 1948 1950

Family background

Joseph Anthony Bodkin was born on 11 August 1902 at Lithgow, son of George Clifford Bodkin, navvy and union organiser, and his wife Bridget Ellen, née Callaghan. In 1923 at Marrickville he married Mary Elizabeth Delaney and had six daughters. He died on 18 March 1950 at Little Bay and was buried from St Mary’s Catholic cathedral at Woronora Cemetery.

Joseph Anthony Bodkin was an older brother of William Francis Bodkin, and the uncle of William George Bodkin.

Occupation & interests

Joseph Anthony Bodkin was educated at St Brigid’s convent at Marrickville and Chapel Street public school. At age 13, he started work on railway construction and was a job delegate by the age of 16. From 1924 to 1926, he was an organiser and conference delegate for the Railway Workers’ Industry Branch of the Australian Workers Union. In 1927 he was employed by the Public Works Department. He was later with the Metropolitan, Water, Sewerage and Drainage Board and worked on building the Woronora Dam. He was an organiser for the Water and Sewerage Board Employees Association from 1937 until 1950. The J A Bodkin Testimonial Fund was established by Council after Bodkin’s death in 1950.

Parliamentary service

Joseph Anthony Bodkin was elected Member of the NSW Legislative Council from 23 April 1946 until 18 March 1950.

Local government service

Joseph Bodkin was elected Alderman for Phillip Ward and the Municipality of Darlington, 4 December 1948 to 18 March 1950. He was a member of Council’s Finance Committee, 1949–50 and the City Planning Committee, 1949–50. In 1949 he was a Councillor of the Sydney County Council.


Information on the Bodkin family courtesy Joseph Bodkin.

City of Sydney Archives: Aldermen’s Files

Parliament of NSW. Former Members, Mr Joseph Anthony Bodkin

‘Bodkin Fund’, The Sydney Morning Herald, 22 September 1950, p. 7



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