APPOINTMENT OF ITA BUTTROSE
ITA IS NEW ABC CHAIR
Credentials aplenty but concerns about process
Where will she stand on funding, independence?
Ms Buttrose began her media career at age 15, as a copy girl at the Australian Womens Weekly, where she was later editor. She was the founding editor of Cleo magazine, then editor-in-chief of the Daily & Sunday Telegraph - the first woman to hold that role at an Australian metro newspaper.
Ita has been a popular radio and TV broadcaster, businesswoman, and health advocate - as chair of the National Advisory Committee on AIDS, AIDS Trust Australia and Alzheimers Australia. She is the 2013 Australian of the Year.
STATEMENT FROM ABC ALUMNI
We seek from Ita Buttrose assurance of her commitment to the ABC as a securely funded public broadcaster, and of her determination to defend the corporation against political interference and threats of privatisation.
We hope she would vigorously reject advertising on all ABC platforms, and will strongly protect the ABC’s online digital services.
We note Ms Buttrose was not on the list of candidates submitted to the Prime Minister by the ABC Nomination Panel.
This is another example of a “captain’s pick”, and could be seen as “stacking” of the board. It is lamentable that the list put forward by the Nomination Panel was inadequate, again showing the farcical nature of the selection process.
We say the Government should have waited until the current Senate Inquiry delivers its report (scheduled for late March) before selecting a new Chair, and that the entire selection process must be overhauled.
ABC Alumni will be seeking to meet with Ms Buttrose following confirmation of her appointment, to discuss these issues and the critical appointment of a new managing director.
After several years of disruption, funding cuts, job losses and uncertainty at the ABC we would welcome new stability under the new Chair's governance.