The principal body with responsibility for responding to complaints about the Australian press has today announced the appointments of new Public, Independent Journalist and Adjudication Panel Members and the retirement of two Public Members.
The Australian Press Council (APC) is very pleased to announce the appointment of Simone Carton, ACT Law Society CEO, as a Public Member, and Alan Sunderland, a Walkley-award winning journalist, as an Independent Journalist Member. Veteran cinematographer David Brill, AM, ACS, and Claire Alder, independent workplace investigator, lawyer and former Deputy District Judge (England and Wales), have been appointed as Adjudication Panel Members. At the same time, the terms of two long-serving Public Members, The Hon. John Doyle, AC, and Dr Suzanne Martin, came to an end on 28 August.
Public and Independent Journalist Council Members have an important leadership and governance role in the operations of the APC, and Adjudication Panel Members are critical in upholding the APC’s standards. “The new appointments announced today bring deep and varied experiences to their roles, which will strengthen the APC’s ability to promote press freedom and uphold high editorial standards in a dynamic media environment,” said APC Chair, Neville Stevens, AO.
The Hon. Mr Doyle and Dr Martin retire after serving on the Press Council for nine years each, across three consecutive terms. “John and Suzanne have made generous and meaningful contributions to all areas of Press Council activity,” said Mr Stevens. “I thank them for their exemplary contributions and wish them all the best in their future endeavours.”
New Public and Independent Journalist Council Members:
Simone Carton has been the CEO of the ACT Law Society (ACTLS) since 2020, leading a team advocating for the legal profession in the ACT and upholding legal professional standards through regulation, education, engagement, and representation. She was previously the CEO of the Australian and New Zealand Society of Palliative Medicine. With more than 25 years in a range of legal, governance and operational roles, Ms Carton also spent nearly ten years as Legal Manager and Company Secretary for the Advertising Standards Bureau and the Australian Advertising Standards Council. She is a Director of Asthma Australia and a Board Member at public charitable foundation Greater Good, ACT.
Alan Sunderland is an award-winning journalist with 40 years’ experience working for the ABC and SBS. Since retiring from full-time work in 2019, he has been writing and advising on editorial issues on a project basis. These projects have included editorial quality reviews for the ABC and The Conversation website and a report on potential media self-regulation models for Ukraine, prepared for the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. Mr Sunderland is Executive Director of the Organization of News Ombudsmen, a Board Member of the Local and Independent News Association and a member of the Walkley Public Fund Committee. He is also the winner of two Walkley Awards for news reporting.
New Industry and Public Adjudication Panel Members:
David Brill, AM, ACS, is a highly accomplished, internationally recognised Australian news and documentary cinematographer. Mr Brill has worked as a cinematographer, video journalist and producer for numerous current affairs programs, including ABC’s Four Corners and SBS’s Dateline. He has worked for international aid agencies to help draw attention to international crises including wars, conflicts, natural and man-made disasters and humanitarian issues. In 2017 he was awarded an Order of Australia (AM) for significant service to the broadcast media as a cinematographer and journalist. He has won six United Nations media peace awards for humanitarian filmmaking, was inducted into the Australian Cinematographers Society Hall of Fame in 2008 and The Australian Media Hall of Fame in 2018.
Claire Alder is an independent workplace investigator, former barrister specialising in criminal law (UK) and former Deputy District Judge in the Magistrates Courts of England and Wales. She is an Admitted Lawyer of the Supreme Court of New South Wales and a Nationally Accredited Mediator (NMAS). She has been undertaking workplace investigations in Australia since relocating from the UK in 2005. Ms Alder’s expertise covers misconduct investigations, reportable conduct, ICAC referrals, public interest disclosure matters, and unsatisfactory professional performance of clinicians.
The APC is responsible for promoting high standards of media practice, community access to information of public interest and freedom of expression through the media. Members include the majority of Australia’s major newspaper, magazine and online publishers. These publishers agree to comply with the APC’s binding Standards of Practice. When complaints about these members are made to the APC, the material is evaluated against these standards by the APC’s Adjudication Panels, which are independent of publishers.
For more information, please contact Dorothy Kennedy, APC Media Advisor, at firstname.lastname@example.org.