Former treasurer Wayne Swan will run against Labor frontbencher Mark Butler to be the party's next president.
Mr Swan on Saturday announced his intention to run against the incumbent ALP president at July's national conference.
"I want to make a contribution to winning the battle of ideas with the right-wing that's taken over the Liberal Party," Mr Swan said in a Facebook video.
"I've got the time, I've got the energy and I've got the organisational and policy experience to beat the Tories.
"My single focus will be to help drive an election-winning campaign that will bury the Turnbull government."
Mr Swan served as treasurer for six years and as deputy prime minister for three.
He last month announced his retirement at the next federal election, expected in 2019.
Lawyer Anika Wells is set to be the party's pick for his Brisbane seat of Lilley.
Mr Butler earlier this year issued a plea for party reform and hit out at factional warlords.
He warned that falling membership numbers had left the Labor paty treading water, and said the rank and file needed to be given more input.