Who we are


Council structure

The Australian Press Council has 23 members, comprising

  • the independent Chair and nine “public members”, who have no affiliations with a media organisation;
  • nine nominees of media organisations which are "constituent bodies" of the Council (see below under Constituent bodies);
  • four independent journalist members, who are not employed by a media organisation.

The independent Chair is chosen by the Council and has always been a judge or university professor. The public members and independent journalist members are appointed by the Council on the nomination of the Chair. The nominees of publishers are chosen by the media organisations which have agreed to support the Council and be subject to its complaints system. All members are expected to act and vote as individuals, not as representatives of any organisation or interest.

For further details, see the Press Council's Constitution.

Information on appointment of a Public Member from New South Wales is available here.


Council membership

Chair of the Council
(biography)

  • Prof Julian Disney AO

Public Members
(biographies)

  • Hon John Doyle AC (Vice-Chair)
  • Julian Gardner (Vice-Chair)
  • John Bedwell
  • Julie Kinross
  • Dr Felicity-ann Lewis
  • Dr Suzanne Martin
  • Andrew Podger AO
  • Robyne Schwarz AM
  • Melissa Seymour-Dearness

Industry Nominee Members
(biographies)

  • Sean Aylmer (Fairfax Media)
  • Hal Crawford (ninemsn)
  • John Dunnet (Country Press Association)
  • Tony Gillies (Australian Associated Press)
  • Bryce Johns (APN News and Media)
  • Alan Kennedy (Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance)
  • Bob Osburn (Community Newspapers Association)
  • Campbell Reid (News Ltd)
  • Pam Walkley (Bauer Media)

Independent Journalist Members
(biographies)

  • Peter Kerr
  • Gerard Noonan
  • Mike Steketee   

Adjudication Panel  Members

The members of the Council's Adjudication Panel are the Chair of the Council, all public and independent journalist members of the Council, three of the industry nominees on the Council (John Dunnet, Alan Kennedy and Bob Osburn) and the following people from community and media backgrounds who are not current Council members:

Community background

  • Cheryl Attenborough  
  • John Fleetwood

 Media background

  • Warren Beeby
  • Sue Carter
  • David Fagan
  • Adrian McGregor
  • Russell Robinson
  • Amanda Wilson
  • Barry Wilson

Staff

(biographies)

The Council secretariat is based in Sydney and is headed by an Executive Director appointed by the Council. The current staff members are:

  • John Pender (Executive Director)
  • Georgina Dridan (Deputy Executive Director)
  • Alanna Harper (Research and Programs Officer)
  • Shamim Islam (Office Manager)
  • Justin Levy (Complaints Officer)
  • Paul Nangle (Director of Complaints)
  • Michael Rose (Director of Research and Communications)

Previous Chairs

  • Sir Frank Kitto AC, KBE, PC (1976-82)
  • Prof Geoffrey Sawer AO (1982-84)
  • Hon Hal Wootten AC (1984-86)
  • Prof David Flint AM (1987-97)
  • Prof Dennis Pearce AO (1997-2000)
  • Prof Ken McKinnon AO (2000-09)


Constituent bodies

The "constituent bodies" of the Council are publishers and other organisations in the media industry which have agreed to provide funding for the Council, to cooperate with the Council's consideration of complaints against them and to publish any resultant adjudications. They also select the industry nominees on the Council.  

News Limited, Fairfax Media and the other publishers of newspapers and magazines that are members of the Council are responsible for about 90 per cent of all print media sales in Australia. Most of the major news websites are also members of the Council, as are a number of other online publishers and the principal union for employees in the media industry. 

For further details, see Constituent Bodies and their Publications.

 
 
 
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