Ita Buttrose confirmed as ABC chair | Broadcast | News | Rapid TV News
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Veteran journalist Ita Buttrose has been appointed chair of the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

Ita Buttrose ABC chair 1 March 19The former magazine editor and TV personality will take the helm five months after ABC’s former chair Justin Milne resigned over allegations of political interference.

“Ms Buttrose is an eminent Australian with vast experience as an editor and media executive. Her leadership of the ABC, a highly valued and trusted cultural institution, is welcomed,” David Anderson, acting managing director, ABC.

“In an era of globalised commercial media, a strong independent ABC is vital. We remain committed to outstanding news and current affairs, hosting conversations that inform the public, and delivering compelling content that is distinctive, high-quality and Australian.”

The broadcaster’s deputy chair, Kirstin Ferguson, welcomed Buttrose’s appointment, saying: “She will bring valuable experience to the ABC board at a time when we will need to make significant strategic and leadership decisions, including the appointment of the new managing director, in coming months.”

Some industry executives have, however, criticised the move as Ms Buttworth’s name was not among those shortlisted by the independent panel tasked with finding the best person for the job.

The secretary of the ABC section of the Community and Public Sector Union, Sinddy Ealy, welcomed Buttrose’s media experience and the appointment of a woman to lead the ABC board. “However, ABC staff are finding it hard to believe that prime minister Scott Morrison and his government have made yet another direct appointment to the ABC board,” she said.

“The Coalition is continuing to treat the ABC like a political plaything rather than following an arm’s-length process that ensures appointments are made in the national interest.”

Buttrose made her name in journalism working for the late media mogul Kerry Packer as editor of Cleo and the Australian Women’s Weekly in the 1970s. She also served as editor of News Corp’s Daily Telegraph and was more recently a TV personality and royal correspondent on Ten’s Studio 10 and Nine Extra.