October 4, 2023 1:08 pm

ABC Chair Ita Buttrose’s Departure from Public Broadcaster Officially Announced

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ABC Chair Ita Buttrose has announced that she will not seek an extension to her term, which will end in March next year. The 81-year-old informed her fellow board directors, including 7:30 chief political correspondent Laura Tingle, of her decision on Tuesday. She also notified the government, despite previously contemplating staying on.

Communications Minister Michelle Rowland publicly announced Buttrose’s decision and praised her as a “giant of Australia’s media industry.” Buttrose’s departure on March 6, 2024, will initiate the government’s search for a successor. Potential candidates for the position reportedly include Buttrose’s deputy, Peter Tonagh, and other high-profile individuals from various sectors.

The departure of Buttrose will also require three new board appointments, adding to a period of significant transition for the ABC. The term of Managing Director David Anderson is also set to expire in May next year.

While Buttrose’s accomplishments were highly praised, Rowland, who was then shadow communications minister, criticized Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s selection process in 2019. Buttrose had not applied for the role but was chosen for the position.

Ita Buttrose’s decision not to seek an extension to her term as ABC Chair marks the end of an era for the media organization. As a veteran journalist and prominent media figure, Buttrose has made a significant impact during her time in the role. Her leadership and contributions to the ABC will be remembered and celebrated.

Buttrose’s decision to inform her fellow board directors and the government reflects her commitment to transparency and the smooth transition of power. By publicly announcing her decision, Communications Minister Michelle Rowland recognizes Buttrose’s contributions and the importance of finding a suitable successor.

The government’s search for a new ABC Chair will undoubtedly attract attention and interest from various individuals in the media industry. Reports of potential contenders, including Peter Tonagh, Buttrose’s deputy, indicate a strong pool of candidates. The selection process will be crucial in ensuring that the individual chosen is capable of leading the organization effectively.

In addition to the search for a new ABC Chair, the organization will also need to fill three board appointments. This period of transition presents an opportunity to further diversify the ABC’s leadership and bring in fresh perspectives.

The impending departure of Ita Buttrose comes at a time when the ABC is already experiencing significant change, with Managing Director David Anderson’s term also set to expire. This presents an opportunity for the organization to undergo a comprehensive evaluation of its leadership and direction.

Despite the praise for Buttrose’s accomplishments, it is important to acknowledge the criticism surrounding the selection process that led to her appointment. The controversy raised by Communications Minister Michelle Rowland in 2019 highlights the need for a transparent and fair process in selecting key positions in public organizations.

As the government embarks on the search for a new ABC Chair, it is essential that lessons are learned from the past and that the selection process is conducted diligently. The chosen candidate must possess the necessary skills and experience to navigate the challenges faced by the ABC and uphold its commitment to providing independent and high-quality journalism.

Ita Buttrose’s decision not to seek an extension to her term as ABC Chair signifies the end of a remarkable chapter in the history of Australian media. The legacy she leaves behind will undoubtedly shape the future of the ABC and the broader media landscape. The organization and its stakeholders will now eagerly await the appointment of a new leader who can guide the ABC into its next phase of growth and excellence.

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Original Source: ABC Chair Ita Buttrose’s Departure from Public Broadcaster Officially Announced

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