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New Chief Executive for Radio New Zealand

Media Release 23 October 2003

New Chief Executive for Radio New Zealand

Radio New Zealand’s board has appointed a new chief executive.

Peter Cavanagh will replace current chief executive Sharon Crosbie who leaves the position after eight years and a distinguished career in broadcasting.

Mr Cavanagh is a 48 year old Australian who has had a distinguished career himself in public broadcasting. Between 1997 and 2002 he was head of television for SBS Corporation.

RNZ board chairman Brian Corban says Mr Cavanagh will bring experience and expertise to his role in Wellington.

He says “Peter’s passion and commitment to public broadcasting and a public charter mirrors the board’s own focus.”

“He will provide fresh leadership and a determination to grow the Radio New Zealand audience. We are delighted to have attracted a chief executive with such credentials to Radio New Zealand,” Mr Corban says.

Peter Cavanagh is appointed for five years and will take up the position on December 1.

*attached biographical details

Radio New Zealand’s New Chief Executive

Biographical Details

Peter Cavanagh has had a distinguished career in public broadcasting.

It began as a cadet journalist in Sydney for ABC Television and Radio News, took him through political reporting to journalism training in Britain and into news management.

Most recently he was Head of Television for SBS Corporation and is said to have presided over the most successful period in the history of SBS Television.

During his five years in this role (1997-2002) he achieved record audience growth, doubled local content and successfully re-positioned the SBS brand.

When Peter resigned in 2002 SBS Corporation Managing Director Nigel Milan said: “I believe Peter Cavanagh is the best Head of Television we’ve ever had.”

Mr Milan continued, “his talent, enthusiasm and drive have propelled SBS Television to new heights, not just in audience numbers and new innovative programmes, but in the respect in which SBS is held by the general public, fellow broadcasters and the Government.”

Peter is a 48 year old Australian known for his strong commitment and passion for public broadcasting. Within SBS he was identified as the “chief protector of the broadcaster’s charter, independence and public broadcasting values.”

Peter Cavanagh’s career highlights:

- 1997-2002 Head of Television SBS Corporation
- 1996-1997 Head of News and Information Services SBS
- 1991-1996 Managing Director Australian Capital Television
- 1988-1991 NSW Manager Australian Capital Television
- 1984-1988 Course Leader Postgraduate Diploma in Broadcast
Journalism Cornwall College of Higher Education (UK)
- 1986 Appointed the United Kingdom’s first Principal
Lecturer in Broadcast Journalism
- 1978-84 Senior Political Correspondent ABC Sydney
- 1977-78 Chief Sub-Editor ABC National Radio News Sydney
- 1976-77 Assistant Chief Sub-Editor ABC Radio News Sydney
- 1974-76 Sub-Editor ABC Radio News Sydney
- 1973 Cadet Journalist ABC Television and Radio News

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