Where would we be without investigative journalism? How would we uncover scandals and corruption, hold the government and corporations accountable or expose matters that are concealed? How can we probe and establish the truth?
Byron Bay Writers Festival director Edwina Johnson says these and other vital questions will be addressed when some of Australia’s most prestigious and award-winning, investigative journalists feature in several hard-hitting Festival panels.
Esteemed journalists David Marr, Colleen Ryan and Christopher Warren will feature in Friday’s session When Media Empires Fall: The Inside Story, chaired by local resident, author and commentator Edna Carew.
David Marr is the author of Political Animal. He is a Walkley-Award-winning journalist and has written for The Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and The Monthly.
Colleen Ryan was a Fairfax journalist for more than 35 years and she is a three-time Walkley Award winner, including the coveted Gold Walkley. Colleen’s latest book is Fairfax: the Rise & Fall.
Christopher Warren is the CEO of the Walkley Foundation for Excellence in Journalism and is the immediate past president of the International Federation of Journalists.
Another of Australia’s most respected investigative journalists, five-time Walkley Award winner, Kate McClymont from the Sydney Morning Herald, will feature on Sunday in the session Getting To The Truth: Courage and Persistence in Investigative Journalism.
Joining McClymont on the panel are Colleen Ryan and Joanne McCarthy. McCarthy is a Newcastle Herald journalist who was named the 2013 NSW Australian Journalist of the Year and Gold Walkley Award winner for her investigations into the sexual abuse of children, primarily by Catholic clergy in Newcastle and the Hunter Valley, and her relentless campaign for a royal commission.
Another festival session sure to attract crowds is The Nature of Corruption with Matthew Condon, Tara Moss, P M Newton and chair Moya Sayer-Jones. Matthew Condon’s latest books are two volumes of a true crime non-fiction trilogy Three Crooked Kings and Jacks and Jokers – the epic story of Queensland corruption in the latter half of the 20th century.
‘With the festival now just days away, we encourage everyone to pick up their tickets now,’ says Johnson.
For all festival tickets and information go to www.byronbaywritersfesitval.com.