On 25 September 2007 the Hon. Ian Callinan AC was appointed commissioner by the then Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry, under section 66AY of the
Quarantine Act 1908, to conduct an independent inquiry into the outbreak of equine influenza in Australia. Mr Callinan delivered the final report to the Australian Government on 25 April 2008.
In response to the Callinan report recommendations, the government appointed Dr Kevin Dunn as Inspector-General of Horse Importation on 11 September 2008.
In April 2008 the government appointed Mr Roger Beale AO to lead the Review of Australia's Quarantine and Biosecurity Arrangements. In its preliminary response to the Beale review the government agreed to establish a statutory office of the Inspector-General of Biosecurity. The IGB would absorb the role of Inspector-General of Horse Importation and incorporate the intent of the independent audit function recommended by the Callinan report.
On 1 July 2009 the government appointed Dr Dunn as the Interim Inspector-General of Biosecurity pending creation of a statutory position. Dr Dunn was succeeded on 30 June 2013 by Dr Michael Bond, who retired on 29 April 2016.
The position of Inspector-General of Biosecurity was formally established under s 566A the
Biosecurity Act 2015 (the Act), which came into force on 16 June 2016.
Dr Helen Scott-Orr is the first Inspector-General appointed under the Act.