WHILE Kirsten Livermore isn't one for regrets, she admitted she wished she had had a "little bit more fun" during her time as Member for Capricornia.
But the Mackay-born mother-of-two has set herself too many goals to worry about that before she retires at next year's election.
Ms Livermore, who was first elected to Federal Parliament in October 1998, yesterday announced this would be her 15th and final year representing Capricornia.
She wants to spend more time with her children, aged 9 and 6, and give her husband Craig Brown the opportunity to finally follow his own career aspirations.
"I have had to ask a great deal from my family during my time in parliament and the time has come to put them first," Ms Livermore said.
"I've been torn between my responsibility for my family and the responsibility for my electorate.
"I've been resisting it while the polls were looking so bad for us, but now that's changed."
"A decision like this comes with a degree of sorrow but I am certain that it is the right one for me, my family and the Labor Party."
At only 29, she told the House of Representatives in her maiden speech that she would pour her "heart, energy and aspirations" into representing Capricornia.
Now at 43, she said it was time to hand over to a younger person.
"I believe that what is needed now is a younger person to take up the challenge and the opportunity that comes with representing this diverse and dynamic electorate," Ms Livermore said.
The announcement came as no surprise to Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
The pair had forged a close friendship during their years working together and Ms Livermore said she had spoken to Ms Gillard more than once about resigning from politics.
But Ms Livermore said she would not be opening "any bottles of champagne" until Labor won the next Federal election.
She listed a number of projects on her agenda in the meantime, including the CQUniversity and TAFE merger and the Yeppen Floodplain study.
Ms Livermore also looked back at past projects.
She said some of her proudest achievements were receiving $76 million in funding for the Rockhampton Hospital, the cancer centre and one of her very first - helping secure the UQ Rural Clinical School in Rockhampton.
As for the future, Ms Livermore said it was the one question she couldn't answer.
"I've been grappling with this decision for a while," she said.
"It's been hard to think any further ahead."
Kirsten Livermore facts
Born: November 10, 1969, in Mackay
Married: Craig Brown
Studied: Commerce and Law at the University of Queensland
Jobs: Before becoming a politician she was a solicitor and trade union organiser for the Community and Public Sector Union
Community work: Capricorn Youth Shelter, Rockhampton Women's Shelter, Girls Time Out Youth Support Centre and the Yeppoon Surf Club
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