2010 Walkley Award Winners
Laurie Oakes, Nine Network, “Labor leaks” read more
ABC Radio National, 360 documentaries, “The too hard basket” read more
Andrew Meares, smh.com.au and nationaltimes.com.au, “Phonearoids: Looking Back at Moving Forward" read more
Lisa Wiltse, Getty Images, “Potosi”” read more
Paul Cully, The Sydney Morning Herald read more
Warwick McFadyen, The Age, “To the end, a killer’s gilt show’s through” read more
Nicole Hasham and Laurel-Lee Roderick, The Illawarra Mercury, “Fund collapse ruins families” read more
Adrian Proszenko, The Sun-Herald, “Melbourne Storm rorts salary cap” read more
Michael Dodge, The Herald Sun, “Magical Moments” read more
Stephen Long, ABC Radio, PM, “Long-term returns not so super” read more
SBS, World View, “Echoes of Srebrenica”
David Marr, Quarterly Essay , “Power trip: The political journey of Kevin Rudd” read more
Lenore Taylor, The Sydney Morning Herald, “ETS off the agenda until late next term”
Mark Knight, The Herald Sun, “Moving forward”
Eric Löbbecke, The Australian, “Rudd’s dangerous climate retreat” read more
Stephen Fitzpatrick, The Australian, “Sri Lankan asylum seeker stand-off” read more
Pamela Williams, The Australian Financial Review, “Kill Kevin” read more
Brett Costello, The Daily Telegraph, “Jessica” read more
Michael Bachelard, The Sunday Age, “The shadow side of a cardboard king” read more
Phil Hillyard, The Daily Telegraph, “Prime Minister Julia Gillard” read more
Mary Ann Jolley and Andrew Geoghegan, ABC TV, Foreign Correspondent, “Fly away children” read more
Neale Maude, ABC TV, Four Corners, “A careful war” read more
Sophie McNeill and Geoff Parish, SBS TV, Dateline, “Questions from Oruzgan” read more
Fouad Hady and Ashley Smith SBS TV, Dateline, “Iraq’s deadly legacy”
Linton Besser, The Sydney Morning Herald, “The wrong stuff”
Kerry O’Brien, ABC TV, The 7.30 Report, “The Rudd and Abbott interviews”
Andrew Cornell, The Australian Financial Review, “Once bitten: How Australia’s banks dodged the crisis” read more
Jason South, The Age read more
Shirley Shackleton, The Circle of Silence: A personal testimony before, during and after Balibo (Murdoch Books) read more
Kerry O’Brien, ABC TV presenter, The 7.30 Report read more
Cameron Forbes read more
Gold Walkley / Television News ReportingBack to Top
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Laurie Oakes, Nine Network, “Labor leaks”Laurie Oakes knows a good leak when he hears one. The Nine Network’s federal political editor heard two whispers during the 2010 election campaign – and sent them echoing around Australia. The first leak, put direct by Oakes to Julia Gillard during a National Press Club address, was the claim that she had reneged on a deal with Kevin Rudd over any leadership challenge. The second leak involved details of her apparent opposition in cabinet to paid parental leave and an increase in the aged pension. Both stories were reported nationally, crediting Oakes. His stories became significant issues in the election debate – not just the leaks themselves, but the question over who was the source. Laurie Oakes is one of Australia’s foremost political commentators and authors. He has had a distinguished career in journalism spanning more than 40 years and is renowned for his probing interviews and scoops. His commentary and news-breaking ability have earned him the respect of both his peers and politicians, and in 1998 he won the Walkley Award for Journalistic Leadership. As well as reporting on federal politics as political editor for Nine News, for more than 20 years Oakes wrote an influential political column in The Bulletin. Since The Bulletin ceased publication, he has penned a weekly column in Brisbane’s Courier-Mail and other News Limited tabloids around Australia. Judges’ commentsThe question Laurie Oakes put to Julia Gillard was inescapable – it was like a half-nelson. Showing the depth of sources at his disposal, the Canberra veteran trumped everybody and totally derailed the election campaign.
All Media: Social Equity JournalismBack to Top
John Blades, ABC Radio National, 360 documentaries, “The too hard basket”Disabled people are rarely touched in a loving way or thought of as sexually desirable, yet they have the same need for a sex life as everyone else. This is the oddly confronting subject explored in “The too hard basket” by John Blades, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) in 1982 and who cannot move his body from the neck down. In the documentary, Blades tells his own story of his loss of independence, depression and decades of celibacy – and then of how he read about a sex worker who specialises in disabled clients. Blades talks to two sex workers who have disabled clients about the importance of touch to every human being, their experiences with people who are having sex for perhaps the first time, and the healing nature of their work. John Blades has been presenting and producing programs about experimental music on community station 2MBS-FM for 28 years. He has also made programs about film and music for ABC Radio National. He has a Masters degree in civil engineering and a passion for outsider art and cinema. He spreads the word about life with MS through talks and articles. Judges’ comments Remarkable journalism that tells us an enormous amount about a subject that is usually disregarded, even taboo in mainstream media, and tells us the story from the inside, with sensitivity and unblinking honesty.
Best Online JournalismBack to Top
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Andrew Meares, smh.com.au and nationaltimes.com.au, “Phonearoids@mearesy: looking back at moving forward”
Meares took viewers outside the frenetic heat of the election campaign to cut through the political spin. He combined great storytelling and sharp observational skills with an innovative use of technology to deliver a unique and thoroughly engaging view of the election. In a campaign dominated by 24-hour news cycles, Meares’ images provided a rare moment of clarity and told the election story in a compelling and original way.
Daily Life / Feature PhotographyBack to Top
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Lisa Wiltse, Getty Images, “Potosi”
Best Three HeadingsBack to Top
Warwick McFadyen, The Age, “Heads and tales”
When gangland killer Carl Williams was given a gold-coffin send-off by his family, friends and associates, Warwick McFadyen couldn’t resist blurring the line between “gilt” and “guilt”. The other headlines in his winning entry were inspired by Harry Kewell’s red card for a handball in the World Cup, and by a story on the difficulties young people face getting into the housing market. McFadyen started at the Newcastle Herald before moving to Melbourne. Aside from a short stint in Canberra and a longer period living in Ireland, he has been at The Age since 1987. His work there flows between writing and production. He has been a Walkley finalist three times. This is his second Walkley Award.
Warwick McFadyen’s three headings are an outstanding example of his craft. Whether it be a front-page splash, a heart-wrenching moment in sport or column commentary, he has shown a concise and accurate understanding of each story and the context in which it unfolded. A very high standard of work produced against the backdrop of daily deadline pressures.
“The curious case of Jenson Button, the man whose salary is stuck in reverse”
All Media: Coverage of Indigenous AffairsBack to Top
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Martin Butler and Bentley Dean, ABC TV, Contact
Correspondent and Dateline. Dean was a contestant in ABC TV’s first Race Around the World in 1997, and has filmed and directed stories for Dateline as well as several award-winning documentaries.
All Media: Coverage of Community and Regional AffairsBack to Top
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Nicole Hasham and Laurel-Lee Roderick, The Illawarra Mercury, “Fund collapse ruins families”
This series of reports is an outstanding exposé of a complicated financial collapse and the devastating effects on hundreds of investors, workers and businesses. Relentless investigation and painstaking research has brought to light a massive regulatory failure and blame-shifting. The reporting includes an impressive array of personal stories demonstrating the shattering local impact; the reporters’ pursuit led to more exclusive revelations despite the main players hiding behind a public relations company. Succinct, confident writing with enormous public benefit.
All Media: Best Sports JournalismBack to Top
Adrian Proszenko, The Sun-Herald, “Melbourne Storm rorts salary cap”
Adrian Proszenko was the groundbreaker, revealing the initial investigation which led to the uncovering of a deeper, widespread salary cap rort. The story led to the exposure of the most breathtaking salary cap rorting in Australian NRL history.
Sport PhotographyBack to Top
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Michael Dodge, heraldsun.com.au, “Seizing the moment”
All Media • International JournalismBack to Top
Mary Ann Jolley and Andrew Geoghegan, ABC TV, Foreign Correspondent, “Fly away children”
Mary Ann Jolley and Andrew Geoghegan were on another assignment, staying in a hotel in Addis Ababa, when they noticed it was full of Western families and their newly adopted Ethiopian children. There was something confronting about the international adoptions happening en masse in Ethiopia. They felt it warranted scrutiny. A few inquiries to local and international human rights organisations revealed serious concerns about the lack of oversight of the industry and alarming stories about the way children were procured by adoption agencies.
But it proved a challenging story to film, requiring much planning and ingenuity. No international human rights organisation would go on the record, for fear the government would banish it from the country. Former agency employees and parents who had given up their children were terrified of airing their grievances, scared of reprisals from corrupt agency and government officials. And most American families who had been lied to about their adopted child’s background and/or medical condition, refused to be interviewed because they were worried they would have their child taken away or jeopardise their chances of adopting again. Mary Ann Jolley has worked as a producer and reporter on ABC’s Foreign Correspondent since 2001 and has filmed stories in some of the world’s most closed countries, including Saudi Arabia, North Korea, Libya, Sudan and Zimbabwe.
Andrew Geoghegan has been the ABC’s Africa correspondent since October 2006. He has covered the continent’s major stories, going undercover into Zimbabwe to investigate the political and humanitarian crisis, reporting in Somalia on the dangerous work undertaken by aid agencies, and travelling with the commander of the world’s largest peacekeeping force into the heart of the Darfur conflict. Both Geoghegan and Jolley have been recognised for their work, with several prestigious international awards. Together they won a Walkley in 2009 for Television Current Affairs.
This groundbreaking investigation into the Ethiopian adoption industry was a complex story told very well, with considerable effort made to treat the subject even-handedly. The story had a significant impact, leading to an investigation into the adoption industry in the United States and immediate changes being made to the US Embassy’s adoption visa processing system. Following the program here in Australia, our government suspended its Ethiopian adoption program and ordered a review.
Radio News and Current Affairs ReportingBack to Top
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Stephen Long, ABC Radio, PM, “A Super Scandal”
Stephen Long’s stories for PM on the shortcomings of the current superannuation system were the result of solid, investigative research and analysis that showed how the returns from Australia’s retirement savings were shockingly low. He revealed that the real winners from compulsory super were those charging the fees to run it.
Radio Feature, Documentary or Broadcast SpecialBack to Top
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Kristina Kukolja, SBS, World View, “Echoes of Srebrenica”
Anita Barraud went beyond the beaten track for this extensive primer on Indonesia’s transition to democracy after more than 30 years of dictatorship under military strongman Soeharto. She spoke to politicians, artists, analysts and activists not only in the cities, but in remote regions of West Timor and Aceh.
Her exploration of such complex issues as decentralisation, corruption, and Muslim identity after the Bali and Jakarta bombings was anchored with excellent radio production techniques including natural sound and descriptive writing. In a co-production with the BBC World Service, journalist/producer Barraud worked with support from BBC producer Neil Trevithick
Anita Barraud has worked for more than 20 years as a broadcaster with Radio National, making feature programs, reporting and producing across a range of specialist areas including European politics and arts, education, business, law, science and social justice issues. For 10 years she was a reporter on Asia and Pacific current affairs. She currently produces The Law Report and All in the Mind.
An outstanding use of the medium. The extensive use of natural sound, compiled with Anita’s skill in painting word pictures, gave the program a rich texture. She took on a number of guiding roles to tell the story – a history teacher, a tour guide, a political analyst. She delivered a very well-informed program. Her programs reflected the immense diversity of Indonesian culture and politics in the lead-up to the elections.
Magazine Feature WritingBack to Top
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Annabel Crabb, Quarterly Essay, “Stop at Nothing: The Life and Adventures of Malcolm Turnbull”
This beautifully written and highly detailed character sketch of opposition leader Malcolm Turnbull combined new revelations with insights gleaned from his history in politics and business. As an examination of Turnbull’s character traits – audacity, fearlessness and impatience – the piece arrived at an extraordinary time and foreshadowed the events and leadership tensions that embroiled Turnbull in the months that followed its publication.
The OzCar affair – or “Utegate” – broke shortly after, crippling Turnbull in the opinion polls and demonstrating his preparedness to take risks in the pursuit of success, and his fondness for intrigue and adventure. Annabel Crabb researched and wrote the piece over several months with the consent of her editor at The Sydney Morning Herald. She spent hours with Turnbull for interviews and background discussions, and also spoke to dozens of Liberal Party politicians, present and past, businesspeople, lawyers, campaigners, bureaucrats and others who had encountered Turnbull in various of his earlier guises.
Annabel Crabb has been a political columnist and sketchwriter for The Sydney Morning Herald. She joined the federal parliamentary press gallery in 1999 and has reported on federal politics ever since, with one absence during which she served in London as the correspondent for Fairfax’s Sunday titles. This is her first Walkley Award.
Annabel Crabb’s Quarterly Essay on Malcolm Turnbull was newsworthy, incisive and funny. Her portrayal of Turnbull’s personality eventually proved to be freakily accurate as he struggled to handle the “Utegate” affair. Annabel’s carefully crafted essay also showcases her considerable gift for writing.
All Media: Best Scoop of the YearBack to Top
Lenore Taylor, The Sydney Morning Herald, “ET S off the agenda until late next term”
Taylor’s revelation, that Rudd planned to shelve the ET S, took both the public and most of Rudd’s own ministers by surprise. Taylor exposed a political decision which is recognised as one of the key precursors to Rudd’s downfall. Building her story over several days through back channel sources and her command of the issue, Taylor produced a scoop, well ahead of her rivals, which could not be denied by manipulative spin.
Best CartoonBack to Top
Mark Knight, The Herald Sun, “Moving forward”
Paying homage to His Master’s Voice, Knight captured the debilitating effect on the public and press gallery. Sharp drafting style and sharper wit. A perfectly pitched gag.
Best ArtworkBack to Top
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Eric Lobbecke, The Australian, “Rudd’s dangerous climate retreat”
Eric Lobbecke is given all of two to three hours to produce his news illustrations, from scratch. “We receive the article to read and generally I draw the idea in pencil, then scan it into the computer and colour it with Photoshop,” he writes. Lobbecke has illustrated for News Limited since 1988. Until last year, he worked as editorial cartoonist for The Sunday Telegraph for 11 years. He has illustrated four children’s books and written one.
The demands on newspaper artists to provide quality illustrations, often in full colour, are sometimes crippling to the creative process. Interpreting an opinion article, and representing that point of view adequately, demands mastery of the materials of the trade and a nimble social and political conscience. Lobbecke’s submission not only served to illustrate Kevin Rudd’s failure to deliver his ET S policy, but also contributed a historically literate allegory to Paul Kelly’s article. A masterful blend of both traditional and computer-based artistic techniques delivered a most impressive result.
Outstanding Continuous Coverage of an Issue or EventBack to Top
Stephen Fitzpatrick, The Australian, “Sri Lankan asylum seeker stand-off”
individuals at the centre of the story. Stephen Fitzpatrick fixed this when he tossed a mobile phone aboard with written instructions in English and Indonesian to call him. His journalism helped humanise the asylum seekers and their plight, while holding immigration officials in both countries to scrutiny.
cited in news reports worldwide. The efforts by Jakarta and Canberra to prevent both groups from talking to the media effectively treated the Sri Lankans as criminals by denying them the basic human right of freedom of expression. This situation presented significant ethical questions as well as reporting and technological challenges.
Stephen Fitzpatrick displayed creativity, tenacity and a concern for the plight of the highly vulnerable people caught in the controversies at Merak and on the Oceanic Viking. He overcame obstacles to reach these people and bring their perspectives to Australian and, ultimately, international attention. His compelling stories came just as the asylum issue emerged as a critical political battleground in Australia.
Newspaper Feature WritingBack to Top
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Patrick Carlyon, Herald Sun, “Where the Hell is Everyone?”
In the wake of the Black Saturday fires the entire town of Marysville had vanished. The exact death toll was unclear – and so was why so many locals had been caught unaware. Patrick Carlyon went to evacuation centres and spoke to survivors in his attempt to reconstruct the events before, during and after the Marysville catastrophe.
Inspired by John Hersey’s 1946 book Hiroshima, Carlyon focused on four victims for the spine of the piece, and found power in describing the sheer ordinariness of their lives before the flames. Continually asking through the writing process, “What was it like to be there?”, Carlyon re-created the themes of confusion and broken-down communication that marked the tragedy.
Patrick Carlyon has been a features writer at the Herald Sun since 2008. Previously, he worked at The Bulletin, where he covered several Olympic Games. Patrick has also contributed profiles and colour stories to many other magazines, including Good Weekend and Gourmet Traveller.
A strong, comprehensive, compelling read. There’s an elegance to his writing that goes beyond normal newspaper feature writing. Patrick Carlyon has a good forensic detail that gives strength to the story’s eloquence. It gives the reader a direct connection with those caught up in the disaster, planting them right in the middle of it all. He has a beautiful turn of phrase.
Nikon-Walkley Press Photographer of the Year
Jason South, The Age
Jason South’s photojournalism exposed the brutal approach to mental illness in Indonesia, where the ill are known as “orang di pasung”, which means “people in stocks”. An estimated 30,000 are kept in shackles throughout Indonesia. In one facility South photographed there is no medical treatment, just potions, massage and prayer. Many of the patients are naked and nearly half of them are chained to poles. Closer to home, South snapped Liberal leader Tony Abbott off guard and on the campaign trail and captured a moment of historic uncertainty for Prime Minister Julia Gillard and Tim Mathieson as they left the stage on election night, not sure if she would be in a position to form a minority government. He documented the maudlin extravagance of an underworld funeral, as mourners carried the coffin of slain underworld figure Carl Williams from the church in a gold casket. And South singled out Vietnam veteran Barry Brewer at the Anzac Day dawn service at the Shrine of Remembrance in Melbourne.
South began his career at the Sunday News in New Zealand. He moved to Australia in 1993 and two years later joined The Age. Jason was the Nikon Photographer of the Year in 1999 and the Nikon–Walkley Press Photographer of the Year in 2003. Last year he won the Walkley award for Photographic Essay.
A remarkably beautiful series of images, though often reflecting such debasing circumstances. Jason has produced a folio of world-class photojournalism, bringing to the public images of places and circumstances otherwise hidden from the world.
News PhotographyBack to Top
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Brett Costello, The Daily Telegraph, “Jessica”
All Media: Business JournalismBack to Top
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Duncan Hughes, The Australian Financial Review, “ASIC Knew About Storm for Months”
The collapse of Townsville-based Storm Financial on January 11 was the moment the global financial crisis became personal. Overnight, thousands of Australians lost their life savings and faced losing their homes. But no-one wanted to take responsibility – not the banks, not Storm founder Emmanuel Cassimatis, or the advisers.
Duncan Hughes spent weeks talking to Storm clients, staff and bank employees, and pulled together a picture of an investment operation careening out of control. He found evidence of the Commonwealth Bank’s implication in the billions of dollars lost, even as the bank continued to deny responsibility. Eventually filing more than 90 articles, Hughes’s coverage played a significant role in forcing the banks to admit responsibility and make settlement offers to Storm clients; every one of those clients will say that’s journalism with a real impact. ASIC inquiries are continuing.
Duncan Hughes completed a graduate cadetship at The Herald, Melbourne, in 1980 and spent three years as a general and police reporter. He has worked for London’s Daily Telegraph, the South China Morning Post and reported from New York for the Post and (UK) Sunday Business. He returned to Australia in 2004 where he initially worked for The Age before joining The Australian Financial Review.
It’s a forensic analysis of one of the biggest business stories of the last 12 months. These stories revealed new details of the involvement of the Commonwealth Bank’s massive lending to clients of Storm Financial. The story had considerable public impact, helping force the Commonwealth Bank to admit its role.
Phil Hillyard, The Daily Telegraph, “Prime Minister Julia Gillard”
Phill Hillyard is primarily a sports photographer used to snapping the moment of impact between AFL ruckmen, not photographing a political grudge match. But when he got the call from his picture editor, Hillyard went straight from a weekend double sports shift to document the first week in office of the new prime minister. It was a daunting task. “Parliament House to me was that big building on the left as you drive to rugby league matches at Bruce Stadium,” he says. The week started off slowly, but once he started to get a few pictures his confidence grew, and he was able to capture Julia Gillard with her guard down, providing readers with an exclusive insight into the life of the new leader. Phil Hillyard began his career as a copy boy with the Adelaide News, gaining a cadetship as a photographer eight months later in 1989. After its closure in 1992, Hillyard freelanced for a few years. He transferred to The Daily Telegraph in 1998 and is currently working as their sports photographer.
He has won many national and international awards for his work, including five Walkley Awards. He was named Australian Press Photographer of the Year in 2001. Judges’ comment Phil Hillyard’s essay offers us a candid insight into a time that would become one of the most significant stories in Australian politics. There have been many such essays over the years and the challenge is to record without intrusion or control by media units. It is clear that Julia Gillard was comfortable with his presence. Though the lighting was dictated by the moment, Hillyard has produced an essay that is varied, unrestricted and an intimate illustration of Australia’s first female prime minister.