Our Walkley Award Winners

Click through to see the full list winners from the latest Walkley Awards

Encouraging excellence

The annual Walkley Awards are the pinnacle of achievement for any Australian journalist. The Walkleys were started by Ampol Petroleum founder Sir William Gaston Walkley in 1956 with just five categories recognising excellence in print journalism. Today there are 30 categories across all platforms, judged with a two-tier process. No matter their era, Walkley Award-winning stories have always chronicled Australia’s history, people and events.

Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism

The Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism exist to recognise and reward excellence, independence, innovation and originality in storytelling and distinctive reporting. The awards cover all media and have expanded to encompass the changing nature of the media industry and innovation in journalism. Entries include research and investigations, well-crafted and innovative presentations, news-breaking single stories, and engaging, entertaining and/or informative reporting. More than 1,300 entries are received each year across 30 categories.

The 2020 winners were announced on November 20. Read the full list of winners for the 65th Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism here.

See a list of all the 2020 finalists here.


Nikon-Walkley Press Photography Awards

The Nikon-Walkley Awards for Excellence in Photojournalism recognise the work of photographers across a range of genres, from news and sport to portraiture and photographic essays. Some of their images are the work of a split second. Others take months of research and trust-building. Photographers interact with their subjects with perhaps more intimacy than storytellers in any other medium; they can move you with a single frame.

In 2019 the Walkley Foundation celebrates 20 years of support from Nikon, which has allowed us to grow a program that recognises and rewards Australia’s most skilled press photographers.


Walkley Book Award

The Walkley Book Award celebrates the value and importance of long-form journalism, acknowledging the proud line-up of Australian writers who have taken subjects of enduring topicality and consequence from news bulletins, eye-witness reporting, investigations and historical records and provided readers with expanded factual detail, revelation and greater clarity of analysis in book form.

Lucie Morris Marr won the 2020 Walkley Book Award for Fallen. Read the full list of winners for the 65th Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism here.


Walkley Documentary Award

The Walkley Documentary Award celebrates outstanding documentaries.

Revelation, by Sarah Ferguson, Nial Fulton and Tony Jones won the 2020 Walkley Documentary Award. Read the full list of winners for the 65th Walkley Awards for Excellence in Journalism here.


Young Australian Journalist of the Year Award

The Walkley Young Australian Journalist of the Year Awards recognise and reward the hard work of our most outstanding young Australian journalists. In 2021, these the awards will recognise those aged 28 and under who demonstrate excellence in the fundamental tenets of the craft as well as the ability to present distinctive and original journalism that pushes the boundaries of the profession.

Annabel Hennessy from The West Australian was named the 2020 Young Australian Journalist of the Year for her powerful investigation Kill or Be Killed?: The First Chapter: The incarceration of Jody Gore”. This story was also the winner of the Public Service Journalism category.


Freelance Journalist of the Year Award

The Freelance Journalist of the Year recognises the unique contribution that freelance journalists make across all media platforms to the future of the industry, and is open to residents of either Australia or New Zealand. The award is an initiative of the Walkley Foundation in partnership with Media Super and MEAA.

Karishma Vyas (101 East – Al Jazeera English and Foreign Correspondent, ABC) received the June Andrews Award for Freelance Journalist of the Year for the stories “The War on Afghan Women,” “Afghanistan: The Healers” and “Behind Enemy Lines”.


Women’s Leadership in Media Award

Women’s Leadership in Media honours women who are making a outstanding journalistic contribution to gender equality and the visibility of women in society – both in Australia and on a global scale. It celebrates reporting that demonstrates notable innovation, enterprise or courage in raising awareness of women’s experiences and perspectives, and reflects the significance of media coverage in altering perceptions, challenging stereotypes and fighting misinformation.

Joanna Lester, Madeleine Hetherton and Rebecca Barry (Media Stockade, NITV and SBS On Demand) received the 2020 June Andrews Award for Women’s Leadership in Media for the documentary “Power Meri”.


Arts Journalism Prizes

There are two categories for the Walkley Arts Journalism Prizes in 2021 – the Arts Journalism and the Walkley-Pascall Prize for Arts Criticism. Both come with a $5000 prize thanks to the support of the Copyright Agency.

All Media: Arts Journalism

This award recognises a significant contribution in reporting, writing, news-breaking and analysis of arts issues. This may include profiles of artists, features and investigations, reporting on the structures and personalities involved in the creation of contemporary culture, and examination of the creative arena. 

All Media: Pascall Prize for Arts Criticism

The Pascall Prize celebrates the unique contribution of critics to our cultural landscape, and the specialist, detailed knowledge they draw on to contextualise works of art.

Mireille Juchau was awarded the 2020 Pascall Prize for Arts Criticism and Steve Dow received the 2020 June Andrews Award for Arts Journalism.


Industrial Relations Reporting Award

The June Andrews Award for Best Industrial Reporting is an all-media award recognising outstanding journalism which captures the importance of a robust industrial relations ecosystem for Australian workers and businesses, as well as its complexities.

The award seeks to elevate the importance of industrial relations coverage and to encourage it further. It was established in 2017 in honour of Helen O’Flynn (1920-1984), one of Australia’s most respected industrial journalists, and Alan Knight, an Emeritus professor and newspaper, radio and TV journalist for over 40 years.

Ben Schneiders and Nick McKenzie (The Age) received the 2020 June Andrews Award for Industrial Relations Reporting for “John Setka, domestic violence and the unions”.


Our Watch Award

Our Watch’s national media awards scheme, which is administered by the Walkley Foundation, recognises and rewards exemplary reporting on violence against women, in particular reporting that highlights the causes of violence and what we as a society can do to prevent it.

Nina Funnell (News.com.au, The Mercury and NT News) was awarded the 2020 Our Watch Award for “Let Her Speak”.


Media Diversity Australia Award

The Media Diversity Australia Award honours journalists who are making an outstanding contribution through their reporting or coverage of diverse people or issues in Australia. This includes culturally and linguistically diverse communities (CALD) and people with disability (PWD). It celebrates reporting that demonstrates notable courage in raising awareness of CALD and/or PWD experiences and perspectives, as well as innovation in the telling of these stories. It recognises the significance of media coverage in providing nuanced reporting which serves to alter perceptions and attitudes, challenge stereotypes and fight misinformation.

Mahmood Fazal and Rebecca Metcalf (Audible Originals) won the 2020 Media Diversity Award for “No Gangsters in Paradise”.