|Chief Minister of the|
|Department of the Chief Minister|
|Status||Head of Government|
|Seat||Darwin, Northern Territory|
|Appointer||Administrator of the Northern Territory|
by convention, based on appointee's ability to command confidence in the Legislative Assembly
|Term length||At the Administrator's pleasure|
contingent on the chief minister's ability to command confidence in the house of Parliament
|Constituting instrument||None (constitutional convention)|
|Formation||19 October 1974 as Majority Leader|
1 July 1978 as Chief Minister
|First holder||Goff Letts as Majority Leader|
Paul Everingham as Chief Minister
|Deputy||Deputy Chief Minister of the Northern Territory|
The Chief Minister of the Northern Territory is the head of government of the Northern Territory. The office is the equivalent of a State Premier. When the Northern Territory Legislative Assembly was created in 1974, the head of government was officially known as Majority Leader. This title was used in the first parliament (1974–1977) and the first eighteen months of the second. When self-government was granted the Northern Territory in 1978, the title of the head of government became Chief Minister.
The Chief Minister is formally appointed by the Administrator, who in normal circumstances will appoint the head of whichever party holds the majority of seats in the unicameral Legislative Assembly. In times of constitutional crisis, the Administrator can appoint someone else as Chief Minister, however, this has never occurred.
The Country Liberal Party won the first Northern Territory election on 19 October 1974 and elected Goff Letts Majority Leader. He headed an Executive that carried out most of the functions of a ministry at the state level. At the 1977 election Letts lost his seat and party leadership. He was succeeded on 13 August 1977 by Paul Everingham (CLP) as Majority Leader. When the Territory attained self-government on 1 July 1978, Everingham became Chief Minister with greatly expanded powers.
In 2001, Clare Martin became the first Labor and female Chief Minister of the Northern Territory. Until 2004 the conduct of elections and drawing of electoral boundaries was performed by the Northern Territory Electoral Office, a unit of the Department of the Chief Minister. In March 2004 the independent Northern Territory Electoral Commission was established.
In 2013, Mills was replaced as Chief Minister and CLP leader by Adam Giles at the 2013 CLP leadership ballot on 13 March to become the first indigenous Australian to lead a state or territory government in Australia.
List of Chief Ministers of the Northern Territory
From the foundation of the Northern Territory Legislative Assembly in 1974 until the granting of self-government in 1978, the head of government was known as the Majority Leader:
|Majority Leader||Party||Term start||Term end||Term in office||Executive|
|Goff Letts||Country Liberal||19 October 1974||12 August 1977||2 years, 297 days||Letts Executive|
|Paul Everingham||Country Liberal||13 August 1977||30 June 1978||321 days||Everingham Executive|
From 1978, the position was known as the Chief Minister:
|Chief Minister||Party||Term start||Term end||Term in office||Ministry|
|Paul Everingham||Country Liberal||1 July 1978||15 October 1984||6 years, 106 days||Everingham Ministry|
|Ian Tuxworth||Country Liberal||16 October 1984||13 May 1986||1 year, 209 days||Tuxworth Ministry|
|Stephen Hatton||Country Liberal||14 May 1986||12 July 1988||2 years, 59 days||Hatton Ministry|
|Marshall Perron||Country Liberal||13 July 1988||24 May 1995||6 years, 315 days||Perron Ministry|
|Shane Stone||Country Liberal||25 May 1995||7 February 1999||3 years, 258 days||Stone Ministry|
|Denis Burke||Country Liberal||8 February 1999||27 August 2001||2 years, 200 days||Burke Ministry|
|Clare Martin||Labor||27 August 2001||26 November 2007||6 years, 91 days||Martin Ministry|
|Paul Henderson||Labor||26 November 2007||28 August 2012||4 years, 276 days||Henderson Ministry|
|Terry Mills||Country Liberal||29 August 2012||13 March 2013||196 days||Mills Ministry|
|Adam Giles||Country Liberal||14 March 2013||30 August 2016||3 years, 169 days||Giles Ministry|
|Michael Gunner||Labor||31 August 2016||Incumbent||4 years, 178 days||Gunner Ministry|