I scored my first job in journalism (at Mildura's Sunraysia Daily in 1989) by listing my hobbies as "beer and pasta". I scored a sub-editing job at The Times in London by telling the night editor I had better legs than everyone else who'd applied. (We were talking on the phone, so he couldn't tell I was fibbing.)
And it's fair to say I've had a very lucky, varied and fun career over the past 30 years.
Since 2007 I've been a weekly columnist with Adelaide’s Sunday Mail. Other former roles include state political reporter for Melbourne’s Herald Sun and public relations manager for the South Australian Tourism Commission. I'm also co-founder of Mining Family Matters, a support website for mining families and people who work away. Our printed survival guides are nearing sales of 180,000.
In early 2017 I was incredibly fortunate to travel overseas on a Churchill Fellowship, visiting nine countries in seven weeks to gauge the significance of the historic Vickers Vimy aircraft at Adelaide Airport and retrace the route of Sir Ross Smith’s pioneering flight from England to Australia.
Two years later, my novel Long Flight Home was published by the wonderful team at Wakefield Press, and SBS TV aired a one-hour TV documentary I co-produced with my husband Max and friend Susan Harrington. Called The Greatest Air Race, the documentary is presented by former NASA astronaut Andy Thomas and features some incredible archival footage of the race. You can watch the doco trailer on Vimeo.
In 2019 I took on the role of South Australia’s Epic Flight Centenary ambassador and coordinator, working with the History Trust of South Australia, Air Force and many other stakeholders to commemorate the epic flight and inspire a new generation. One of our key objectives was to secure the relocation of the Vickers Vimy at Adelaide Airport, and thanks to federal, state and airport funding, that's set to happen in 2021.
In 2019 I gave more than 50 talks across Australia, from radio and TV interviews to library Q&As and Probus Club talks. Nothing really beats being interviewed by David Bevan on ABC Radio Adelaide though.
A major career highlight was speaking under the 'G for George' bomber at the Australian War Memorial (and I've done that three times now!) Over the years I've MC'd conferences and gala events for up to 1000 people.
One of my favourite freelance writing projects was researching and writing Out of the Blocks, a social history of Wynns Coonawarra Estate vineyards (available at their cellar door).
I'm currently a member of the SA Regional Selection Committee for the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust. Former board roles include the Adelaide Riverbank Authority and the Catherine House Trust.
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