Ministers for the Department of Communications and the Arts

Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield

Minister for Communications

Minister for the Arts

Manager of Government Business in the Senate

Appointment of two new directors to the SBS Board

27 February 2017

The Turnbull Government has appointed Emeritus Professor Sally Walker AM as a non-executive director and Mr George Savvides as a non-executive director and Deputy Chair to the Special Broadcasting Service (SBS) Board for a period of five years.

Mr Savvides will become Deputy Chair following the recent appointment of the previous Deputy Chair, Dr Bulent Hass Dellal AO, as Chairperson.
Professor Walker has had an extensive career in law and academia, particularly as vice-chancellor and president of Deakin University. In 2011 she was appointed as a Member of the Order of Australia in recognition of her contribution to education, to the law as an academic and to the advancement of women.

Mr Savvides has significant management and board experience working in Government owned enterprises and not for profit organisations, notably as the former Managing Director of Medibank Private. He also currently serves as Chairman of World Vision Australia.

These appointments are made consistent with the selection process for SBS Board appointments set down in the Special Broadcasting Service Act 1991. This process involves consideration of potential candidates by an independent Nomination Panel for SBS Board Appointments.

Mr Savvides participated in the Nomination Panel process and was recommended for appointment. Professor Walker was not assessed by the Panel, but was identified by the Government as having the requisite skills to be a suitable appointment to the Board.

The Government thanks the Nomination Panel for its work undertaking the selection process and providing a list of nominees for the Government’s consideration.

I congratulate Professor Walker and Mr Savvides on their appointments and look forward to the valuable contributions they will make to the SBS Board.

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