Women in Media began in 2005 when a handful of us in Perth decided to put on three or four events a year for women working in journalism, communications and PR.
The idea was to reach out and connect, swap job opportunities, industry gossip and shared ideals. We hoped we would inspire solidarity between women to together advance our opportunities in the media field.
Since then, we have staged over 40 events, attracting between 80-120 women each time – and a few men who self-select or are invited as speakers.
We have examined topics of huge diversity, from ‘Tinsel and Tiaras: the pressures on female presenters and reporters’ to ‘Who Dares Call it the Dark Side? The Perils of Public Relations’ and ‘The Dos and Do Nots of reporting domestic violence.’ Women in sports reporting and speed mentoring with Perth’s most senior media personalities are among recent themes.
We have had local and fly-in fly-out speakers, including the late disability advocate and broadcaster Stella Young and long-term ABC TV anchor Caroline Jones. Caroline is now our national WIM patron, after the Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance decided in 2013 that it wanted to adopt and extend Women in Media nationally and in all states.
We WiMWA members were delighted. And we’re proud that our idea has now grown even bigger and prouder, as we all prepare to celebrate the inaugural Women in Media National Conference in Queensland in October.
WiMMers of the world unite!
Victoria Laurie is a Women in Media WA committee member