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The Walkley Foundation is delighted to welcome a new staff member to the Walkley team. Based in Sydney, John Bergin will be project manager responsible for rolling out the Google News Initiative training program in Australia and New Zealand, a program managed by the Walkley Foundation.

The Google News Initiative training program has already had success around the world, and will provide free training to a target of 4,000 journalists and students in Australia and New Zealand.

Walkleys chief executive Louisa Graham said the program supports the Walkleys’ mission to support a sustainable future for journalists and newsrooms with accessible professional development. “We can’t wait to connect Australian and New Zealand newsrooms, journalists and students with this free training to boost their skills for digital reporting and verification.”

John has trained and mentored journalists and led digital transition projects in some of Australia’s leading newsrooms. He has previously held senior editorial roles at Sky News and SBS News, consulted to News Corp Australia and lectured on journalism at the University of Western Australia.

“I’m delighted to join the Walkley Foundation and work on a project that will teach journalists a wide range of digital skills so they may continue to tell great stories in new and exciting ways,” John said.

He says his first task will be to recruit trainers and start making connections with organisations to host training sessions for their journalists.

“I’ll be reaching out to all the newsrooms in Australia and New Zealand, as well as universities. We’re conscious too that many journalists are working outside newsrooms so we’ll have offerings for freelance, regional and remote attendees as well.”

Nic Hopkins, Google News Lab lead, said “Google has been a supporter and partner of the Walkley Foundation for years – we know that they have a strong track record in delivering training and innovation in journalism and couldn’t think of a better organisation to work with in launching this training network in Australia and New Zealand.”

For updates on the program please subscribe to the Walkley email newsletter. John Bergin can be contacted via email:

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