The Office of the Information Commissioner (OIC) is a statutory body for the purposes of the:
Initially established under the repealed Freedom of Information Act 1992 (Qld), it continues under the Right to Information Act 2009 (Qld) (RTI Act) and Information Privacy Act 2009 (Qld) (IP Act).
Under the RTI Act and IP Act the Information Commissioner is a statutory office holder appointed by the Governor-in-Council, and is not subject to ministerial direction in the exercise of the functions under the RTI Act and IP Act. The independent authority of the Information Commissioner allows the community to have confidence that the role of the Information Commissioner will be carried out independently, fairly, and impartially.
The Information Commissioner is supported by two other statutory office holders appointed by the Governor-in-Council: the Right to Information Commissioner and Privacy Commissioner.
The Information Commissioner is accountable to the Legal Affairs and Safety Committee (LASC) and meets with the committee during the course of the year to discuss issues, such as, OIC’s activities, work output, budget, annual report, and any other significant issue. The LACSC may also require a report on a particular aspect of OIC’s performance, but it cannot investigate particular conduct or reconsider or review decisions in relation to specific investigations or reviews. However, an independent strategic review of OIC is conducted every five years.
While the Information Commissioner is not subject to ministerial direction, under Section 133 of the RTI Act, OIC’s budget must be approved by the Attorney-General.
The RTI Act provides for an Information Commissioner who is an officer of the parliament, a Right to Information Commissioner and OIC staff. The Privacy Commissioner is established under the IP Act.
Our current statutory office holders include:
Rachael Rangihaeata was appointed as Information Commissioner on 20 September 2013. Rachael champions proactive disclosure of, and appropriate privacy safeguards for, information held by Queensland government agencies including local government, Queensland Government departments, public hospitals and health services and universities, and public authorities.
The Information Commissioner promotes awareness of information rights and responsibilities within the community and Queensland government agencies.
Rachael and her leadership team engage with agency leaders to promote cultures that support good RTI and IP practices, including proactive disclosure, administrative access, pro-disclosure bias in formal access application decision-making and privacy by design.
Before her appointment as Information Commissioner, Rachael held senior leadership positions across all functions of the Office of the Information Commissioner since 2005. Rachael has over 20 years public sector experience, having also worked in various roles within the Queensland State and Commonwealth public service, primarily in strategic and legislative policy.
Rachael holds a Bachelor of Laws (Honours), Bachelor of Science (AES) and Graduate Certificate in Public Sector Leadership (PSM).
Rachael’s current term of appointment is to 20 September 2023.
Katie Shepherd and Anna Rickard jointly perform the role of Acting Right to Information Commissioner (RTI Commissioner), on a part time job share basis. Katie and Anna commenced acting in the role of RTI Commissioner in September 2021.
Katie has worked at OIC since 2006, and as an Assistant Information Commissioner from 2010. Katie holds a Bachelor of Laws (Hons) and was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 2004. Prior to working at OIC, Katie worked in private practice and in the Supreme Court Registry.
Anna also began at OIC in 2006 and has, over the past decade, worked as an Assistant Information Commissioner and Principal Policy Officer. Anna holds Bachelors of Laws and Arts (Hons in psychology) and was admitted as a solicitor of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 2001. Prior to working at OIC, Anna worked in private practice and the community legal sector.
As Acting RTI Commissioner, Katie and Anna jointly lead the external review team to conduct independent merit reviews of access decisions under the Right to Information Act and Information Privacy Act, including making decisions under the delegated authority of the Information Commissioner. Katie and Anna form part of OIC’s Executive Leadership Team.
The selection process to appoint a permanent Right to Information Commissioner is currently being undertaken by the Department of Justice and Attorney-General.
Paxton Booth was appointed to the position of Privacy Commissioner, Office of the Information Commissioner in December 2021.
Paxton has worked in law enforcement and integrity agencies throughout his career. Prior to his appointment as Privacy Commissioner, he was Executive Director, Corruption Strategy, Prevention and Legal at the Crime and Corruption Commission, Qld (CCC). Paxton held several positions at the CCC during his 11 years of employment. Most recently he was responsible for leading the identification of strategic corruption risks, prevention initiatives and corruption audits.
Paxton has a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Commerce, and was admitted as a Barrister of the Supreme Court of Queensland in 1997. He is a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.
Paxton worked at the Office of the Health Ombudsman for 9 months as the Executive Director of Investigations.
Paxton worked for the Queensland Police Service for 11 years as a lawyer. Paxton provided legal advice into investigations about major and organised crime to the QPS and represented the QPS in Supreme Court applications for surveillance devices and other police powers.
Paxton also spent 5 years working at the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.
He brings to the role extensive executive experience in regulatory compliance, and a proactive and strategic approach to working with agencies to adopt effective systems and processes to manage their regulatory responsibilities and minimise risk. Paxton has maintained a strong interest in privacy throughout his career and looks forward to further supporting agencies to identify privacy by design solutions that help build greater trust through transparency, and enable critical outcomes for the community.
Paxton is appointed as Privacy Commissioner to 12 December 2023.
Adeline Yuksel was appointed as Director, Engagement and Corporate Services (DECS) in 2015 and leads the teams responsible for information and assistance, communication, engagement, training, corporate and registry services to internal and external stakeholders.
As DECS, Adeline manages a transformational program to improve all aspects of corporate services, communication and engagement at OIC. This work is continuing and has expanded to include information management and security, deeper engagement with stakeholders and strategic planning.
Adeline has held executive roles leading and managing corporate affairs teams across the public and private sectors including in health, transport and energy. She is an IAP2 certified practitioner and holds a Bachelor of Communications and post graduate qualifications in marketing and international relations. Adeline brings extensive experience in issues management, governance, communication, media, strategy development and community relations to OIC.