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New president of ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal named

The Attorney-General for the ACT has appointed a new president for ACAT.

user iconJerome Doraisamy 02 October 2023 The Bar
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Mary-Therese Daniel, a current presidential member of the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal (ACAT), is set to be the tribunal’s newest president following a competitive selection process.

She brings, ACT A-G Shane Rattenbury said, “a depth of experience” to the role, having been appointed in 2012 as ACAT’s first full-time non-presidential member and promoted in 2015 to presidential member.

Ms Daniel has served in roles with the Family Court of Australia, national firm MinterEllison, Legal Aid ACT, the ACT Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, and the ACT Government Solicitor.


She succeeds the late Graeme Neate AM, who had served as ACAT president from January 2017 until his death in June 2023.

Speaking about the appointment, A-G Rattenbury said: “Ms Daniel’s strong commitment to the aims and objectives of the tribunal have been reflected in her energetic and resourceful approach to her role as a tribunal member since 2012 and as a presidential member since 2015.

“Ms Daniel will ably lead the management of the tribunal as it prepares for its digital future. I look forward to seeing ACAT continue to evolve under her leadership as it serves our growing community in resolving disputes and achieving justice.”

He added: “It was a privilege to work with Graeme Neate, an exceptional lawyer and human being who had served our community as president of ACAT since January 2017.”

A-G Rattenbury also thanked presidential member Geoffrey McCarthy, who has served as temporary president in the interim.

Ms Daniel added: “I’m honoured, and it’s a privilege to be given the responsibility of serving the Canberra community in this role after the incredible leadership demonstrated by Graeme Neate AM, and prior to him, Linda Crebbin, the first ACAT president.

“I welcome the opportunity to lead the tribunal over the next seven years, providing access to justice in an increasingly digital world. I’m committed to promoting public trust and confidence in the tribunal and its conduct of proceedings by ensuring we provide simple, inexpensive, accessible and fair resolution of disputes.”

Ms Daniel’s seven-year appointment as president began on 18 September, and she will have responsibility for the orderly and prompt discharge of all ACAT business and ensuring that its decisions are made according to law.

The ACT Bar Association also congratulated Ms Daniel on her appointment, also pointing to the “depth of experience” that she brings to her new position.