NSW Nationals MP Troy Grant has called time on a 30-year career in public service, making a valedictory speech in Parliament.

A former NSW Police inspector who was twice awarded the Commissioner’s Commendation for Courage, Mr Grant has spent the past eight years serving as the Member for Dubbo.

During his first term in parliament, Mr Grant served as a Parliamentary Secretary for Natural Resources (2011 – 2014) and as Chairman of the Joint Select Committee on Sentencing of Child Sexual Assault Offenders (2013 – 2014). He also led the parliamentary and community debate for the establishment of the NSW Special Commission of Inquiry and gave evidence into the Hunter paedophile hearings and the National Royal Commission into institutional child abuse. After being promoted to Cabinet in April 2014, he held a diverse portfolio in the ministry serving as the Minister for Regional Infrastructure and Services, Hospitality, Gaming & Racing, Tourism and Major Events, Trade and Investment, and the Arts – with each portfolio receiving record funding and reform.

From October 2014 to November 2016 Mr Grant served as the Deputy Premier of NSW and Leader of the NSW Nationals, leading the Nationals to victory at the 2015 State Election and becoming the only Leader to return every sitting member standing for re-election to Parliament. Currently serving as the Minister for Police and Minister for Emergency Services, Mr Grant’s career has come full circle.

The long and distinguished career has not been possible without significant sacrifice though. During his valedictory speech, Mr Grant made special mention of his family, who had “given up so much” to allow him to serve.

“Thank you for giving up so much to allow me to serve, thank you for the many sacrifices you have each made,” Mr Grant said. “The unacceptable trespass into your lives and personal safety because of decisions I made … people wanting to get at me through you by menacing, threatening and harassing you. I will never forgive those individuals for what they did to you for their own benefit, I will never forgive myself. I love you and will spend the rest of my life making up for all those things and being away from you for four years of the eight years I have served.”

Mr Grant also reflected on the loneliness of the job, which took him away from his family.

“I was often surrounded by a million people but more often than not I felt lonely and alone, and missed you dearly,” he said. “I often felt like I was living someone else’s life such was the privilege of much of what I got to do. But I just want to be near you and I want to come home.”