Speaker of the ACT Legislative Assembly Joy Burch MLA farewelled the ACT Auditor-General, Dr Maxine Cooper, in a ceremony at the Assembly on Monday (6 August).
The Speaker, Joy Burch, and Dr Cooper were joined by Senior Executives of the ACT Public Service, the staff of the ACT Audit Office and Dr Cooper’s close family and friends.
Dr Maxine Cooper was appointed as the ACT Auditor-General for the Territory in 2011 for a fixed term of seven years, with her term finishing on Tuesday (7 August).
Before being appointed as the ACT Auditor-General, Dr Cooper was the ACT Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment and the Head of the ACT Water Security Taskforce.
Dr Cooper has held many senior executive roles in the ACT Government as well as other Australian jurisdictions, and the private sector.
Over her seven-year term as Auditor-General, Dr Cooper made a significant contribution to the administration and public accountability of the Territory, often being a thorn in the side of the Government of the day.
Her investigations included Government land deals, hospital management, water pricing, school performance and other important issues that highlighted deficiencies in administration that often embarrassed public officials and governments.
In 2015, she became the centre of controversy herself when Professionals Australia called on her to resign after documents revealed her office shut down an investigation into a whistleblower’s public interest disclosure about the enlarging of the Cotter Dam days after it opened without telling the man who blew the whistle.
The Speaker wished Dr Cooper the very best in her future endeavours.
Director of Financial Audits and Chief Finance Officer, Ajay Sharma will be acting Auditor-General for up to six months while a recruitment process is conducted.