Eleven years after being deposed from the job, Denis Napthine has returned to the post of Victorian Liberal leader — this time as the state’s Premier.
The promotion was a birthday gift for the long-standing MP, who celebrated his 61st birthday yesterday.
He was elected to the role following the shock resignation of Premier Ted Baillieu.
Born and raised in Geelong, Dr Napthine started his schooling in Winchelsea before studying veterinary science at the University of Melbourne.
He worked as a veterinarian in regional Victoria while becoming involved with the Liberal Party.
In 1984, he became a state council representative and the following year became Hamilton branch president until 1988, when he was elected as the member for Portland.
In 1992, when Jeff Kennett was elected to the premiership, Dr Napthine was appointed parliamentary secretary to the health minister.
From there he rose through the ranks, being promoted to youth and community services minister and then treasurer.
His stint as treasurer was shortlived after the Kennett government unexpectedly lost the 1999 election. The resignation of Mr Kennett paved the way for Dr Napthine’s appointment to the Liberal leader role.
As the 2002 election loomed, Dr Napthine was overthrown by Robert Doyle, amid claims the party faced oblivion at the polls under his leadership.
He went on to serve as opposition spokesman in various portfolios until the Liberals won the 2010 election under the leadership of Mr Baillieu.