Senator Ben Small was first sworn in as a Western Australian Senator in November 2020, after being appointed by a Joint Sitting of the Western Australian Parliament to fill the casual vacancy created by the retirement of Finance Minister and Leader of the Government in the Senate, Senator the Hon Mathias Cormann. Prior to entering Parliament, Ben had an extensive career in the maritime and oil & gas industry, from working as a Ship’s Officer through to Marine Manager at Woodside, where he was responsible for managing the safe and cost efficient execution of marine activities in support of oil and gas exports. Like many Australians, Ben had, and later fulfilled the dream of starting his own local small business, a restaurant in the South-West of Western Australia. Proudly showcasing local produce, this business has grown to employ 35 people, including some with disabilities. Growing up in your typical Australian family, where the values of hard work and local volunteering in the community were instilled in Ben, he was actively involved in volunteer marine rescue and spent more than a decade on the road as a Volunteer Ambulance Officer.