Code Authority

Like many industries, the marketing and advertising industry self-regulates. That means that we, and Members, set the standards for data-driven marketing and advertising based on our experience, practices and issues.

As the self-regulatory body for information and response-based marketing, ADMA requires its members to be honest and fair in their customer dealings. To this end, ADMA has developed a Code of Practice and established an independent Code Authority to monitor compliance.

Of course, Members organisations have their own internal complaints handling processes. But ADMA, through the Code Authority, offers consumers somewhere to turn to in cases where they have not been able to resolve their complaint directly with the organisation.

Where a consumer has been unable to resolve a complaint, they can submit a formal complaint by writing to:

ADMA Code Authority
Reply Paid
GPO 3895

Or by email:

What the Code Authority does

The Code Authority investigates unresolved consumer complaints about ADMA members, and reports on these investigations in its annual report.

Download the Code Authority Annual Report 2012

Casework involving non-members is also undertaken and, where a breach of the Code is identified, the non-member is informed and urged to voluntarily comply.

Such cases may also be referred to other appropriate bodies for review.

Should the Authority find a breach of the Code of Practice by an ADMA member it can impose a variety of sanctions including:

  • Requiring a formal apology for the breach
  • Requiring corrective advertising or the withdrawal of offending advertisements or statements
  • Requiring correction of relevant records and personal information
  • Recommending a refund or replacement of goods or services where appropriate
  • Requiring the member to take specified remedial action to correct the breach and avoid reoccurrence
  • Seeking a written undertaking from the member declaring the breach will not be repeated
  • Recommending to the ADMA CEO that membership be revoked

Code Authority

  • GraemeAlexanderbiobio
    Graeme Alexander

    Industry Representative

    Graeme Alexander

    Industry Representative

    Graeme Alexander is the Head of Compliance and Ethics for American Express in Australia and New Zealand. He has over 12 years experience in designing and managing compliance programs & strategies.

    In his current role, Graeme is the Anti-Money Laundering Officer as well as the Privacy Officer for the American Express businesses in Australia.

    Prior to his work with American Express, Graeme managed a number of Compliance Programs for a range of financial services organisations including Merrill Lynch, GE and Toyota Finance. He is a Certified Compliance Professional and also holds the Certified Internal Auditor designation.

  • BillDeebio
    Bill Dee

    Consumer Representative

    Bill Dee

    Consumer Representative

    A consultant who specialises in the areas of compliance, dispute management, customer service and consumer affairs, Bill Dee has extensive experience in industry codes and self-regulation.

    In over 20 years at the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Bill gained wide experience in the area of regulatory compliance. He was one of the architects of the Australian Standard on Compliance Programs and was also particularly active in codes of conduct and other self-regulatory initiatives and disputes management.

    Bill drafted the ACCC's Guide on codes and various other industry codes. For his work in developing innovative self-regulatory industry practices to strengthen the competitiveness of the Australian economy and to protect consumers, Bill was presented with an Australia Day Award by the Commonwealth Government in 1998.

  • JohnWoodbio
    John Wood


    John Wood


    John Wood brings extensive consumer affairs experience to his position as Chair of ADMA’s Code Authority. He runs his own consultancy, specialising in complaints handling, corruption prevention, ombudsman schemes, consumer affairs and customer service charters both in Australia and internationally.

    Previously, John was the Deputy Commonwealth Ombudsman and managed the organisation’s quality assurance, policy, public affairs and major project activities. He was a member of the Government’s Task Force on Customer Service Charters and provided advice to agencies on internal complaint handling systems, service charters and client service practices. John also provided advice to a number of international delegations that were interested in Ombudsman duties or related developments.

    From 1984 to 1994 John held the position of Director of the Federal Bureau of Consumer Affairs where he advised the Federal Government as well as establishing credibility and good working relations with Federal, State and Territory agencies, industry and the consumer movement.

    He is a former President of the Society of Consumer Affairs Professionals in Business, a Life Member of the Australian Consumers’ Association, and was a former Chair of the Consumer Advisory Panel to the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

  • RobinBrownbio
    Robin Brown

    Consumer Representative

    Robin Brown

    Consumer Representative

    Robin Brown brings 25 years of experience in consumer and business regulatory affairs to ADMA’s Code Authority with considerable experience in complaint handling and dispute resolution.

    He spent 10 years as the chair and chief executive of Australia’s national consumer body, the Australian Federation of Consumer Organisations. He also spent five years as an associate member of the board of the Australian Telecommunications Authority (AUSTEL) and oversaw its privacy study.

    Robin has been involved in the establishment of industry-specific dispute handling mechanisms in the banking, life insurance, health insurance and telecommunications sectors, including four years as a member of the Life Insurance Industry Complaints Panel. He was a member of the inaugural Banking Industry Ombudsman Council.

    Robin works as a consumer affairs consultant on projects relating to various industry sectors and on government complaint handling systems

    He has been involved in projects to advance consumer protection and competition policy and regulation in a number of developing countries.

    Robin is member of the Australian Council for International Development Code Committee and in recent years has served as a Councilor of the Australian Consumers’ Association, President of the ACT Council of Social Service and member of the ACT Community Inclusion Board and. He holds a BA and a Master of Public Policy from the Australian National University.