Commissioners

Meet the commissioners serving on the Child Abuse Royal Commission

Six commissioners serve on the Royal Commission into the Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

  • Justice Peter McClellan is chief commissioner.
  • Justice Jennifer Coate is a Judge of the Family Court of Australia. Her previous appointments include Judge of the County Court of Victoria, the inaugural president of the Children’s Court of Victoria and Magistrate of the Magistrate’s Court of Victoria. While at the Children’s Court, Justice Coate oversaw the establishment of the Children’s Koori Court. She has also worked part-time as a Law Reform Commissioner. Justice Coate is the patron of Chances for Children, and worked as a primary school teacher before embarking on her legal career.
  • Commissioner Robert Fitzgerald is on leave from the Productivity Commission, where he has served since 2004. Previously, Commissioner Fitzgerald was the Community and Disability Services Commissioner and Deputy Ombudsmen in NSW. He has extensive experience in the not-for-profit sector, and a diverse background in commerce, law, public policy and community services. Commissioner Fitzgerald holds degrees in commerce and law from the University of NSW, and was made a member of the Order of Australia in 1994.
  • Commissioner Helen Milroy is a consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist, and Winthrop Professor at the University of WA. A descendent of the Palyku people of WA’s Pilbara region, Commissioner Milroy studied medicine at the University of WA. She worked as a GP and consultant in childhood sexual abuse at the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children before completing her specialty training in child and adolescent psychiatry. Commissioner Milroy has served on state and national mental health advisory committees and boards with a focus on the wellbeing of children.
  • Commissioner Andrew Murray is a Rhodes Scholar and former businessman. He was a Senator for WA from 1996 to 2008. His Senate career covered many areas of government – from finance and business issues to institutionalised children. Commissioner Murray served on the senate committees that produced the landmark Forgotten Australians and Lost Innocents Born in England in 1947, Commissioner Murray was placed in a children’s home when he was two, and at age four, was sent to Southern Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) as a child migrant. Commissioner Murray migrated to Australia with his family in 1989.
  • Commissioner Bob Atkinson served as the Commissioner of the Queensland Police Service for 12 years, until his retirement in 2012. In his 44 years with Queensland police, he serviced from Goondiwindi to Cairns, and was a detective for about 20 years. Commissioner Atkinson oversaw reforms stemming from the Fitzgerald Inquiry from 1990.