Louisa Graham will step down as Chief Executive of the Walkley Foundation later this year and Michael Brissenden has been announced as the new Chair of the Walkley Judging Board.

The Chair of the Walkley Foundation, Marina Go, said: “Louisa has displayed tremendous leadership throughout her tenure and the Board thanks her for her service to the media industry.”

Ms Graham’s decision to leave the Walkley Foundation at the end of her contract marks 10 years of working for the Foundation, first as General Manager and then as Chief Executive for four years.

“The Walkley Foundation is now in the strongest position it has ever been,” Ms Go said. “Louisa has worked closely with our partners to ensure we remain at the heart of the Australian media industry. Thanks to her and her team, we are an independent and financially stable not-for-profit. We wish her well on her next journey.”

Ms Graham thanked the Walkley Directors for the opportunity to lead the Foundation and build a strong and dedicated team that has delivered on the Walkleys’ mission to celebrate and recognise great Australian journalism.

“I am immensely proud of what I have achieved at the Foundation and I depart having significantly grown the Walkleys’ equity and stakeholder base,” Ms Graham said.

“It is encouraging to see so many of Australia’s leading companies, universities, state governments, industry bodies and now philanthropic organisations demonstrate their support for quality journalism through the Walkley Foundation,” Ms Graham said.

The recruitment process to identify a new Chief Executive is now under way.

Michael Brissenden and Lenore Taylor

The Walkley Foundation Directors are delighted to welcome Michael Brissenden as Chair of the Walkley Judging Board, following Lenore Taylor’s decision to step down.

Ms Taylor, editor of Guardian Australia, joined the Judging Board in 2017 and became its Chair in November 2018. Claire Harvey, editorial director at The Australian, remains as Deputy Chair of the Judging Board.

“I’ve enjoyed my time as chair of the Walkley Judging Board very much,” Ms Taylor said. “The Walkleys bring us together as an industry and I’d like to thank everyone at the Foundation and all my fellow judges for the time and effort they put into the process. I’d also like to wish Michael Brissenden all the best for his time in the chair.”

Mr Brissenden is a two-time Walkley Award-winning journalist who has served as a political and foreign correspondent in a career with the ABC from 1987 to 2021.

“It is an honour and a privilege to lead the Judging Board, which sets the industry standard for excellence and best practice in journalism,” Mr Brissenden said.

“I’m particularly pleased to be following the inimitable Lenore Taylor in this role. The Walkleys hold a vital place in the Australian media landscape and I look forward to working with my fellow judges to ensure that the awards continue to define, celebrate and encourage the best of what we do.”

—ENDS—

Media enquiries 

Please contact Walkley Foundation communications manager Clare Fletcher on 0432 616 810 or clare.fletcher@walkleys.com. ​

You can find information about the Walkley Awards judging process here, and the Terms and Conditions of the Awards here and conflict guidelines here.