Senator the Hon Helen Coonan, Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts celebrated 50 years of women in Australian TV on 20 September when she launched the new book Look at Me! Behind the Scenes of Australian TV with the Women Who Made It at the annual Women Working In Television (WWIT) cocktail party in Sydney.
Speakers were AFC Chair Maureen Barron, Maggie Tabberer, Lynley Marshall (Director ABC New Media and Digital Services) and the book's author Christine Hogan. Around 400 guests attended including Mary Kostakidis, Sue Masters, Sandra Levy, Margaret Pomeranz, Gretel Killeen, Claudia Karvan, Jenny Brockie, Lorrae Desmond, Mary Rossi, Carla Zampatti, Patricia Lovell, Bridgit Iken, Posie Graeme-Evans and Phillipa McDonald, just to name a few.
Look at Me! is a compilation of interviews with more than 40 women who have featured behind the scenes and in front of the camera over the past 50 years. Maggie Tabberer, Toni Lamond, Patricia Lovell, Jana Wendt, Anita Jacoby and Claudia Karvan are among the fascinating women who talk candidly in the book about their career highs and lows, and their experiences in the high-pressure corporate and creative world of Australian television.
"Since we first welcomed television into our homes in 1956, many Australian women have made, and continue to make, a tremendous contribution to this extraordinary industry. Look at Me! is testimony to the hard work and dedication of all these women," Senator Coonan said. "In the early days, television often reinforced traditional gender roles - it portrayed women as carers, as wives and mothers or on the flipside as vixens or seductresses. But there is no doubt that television has also provided generations of young girls with powerful role models. You only have to look at some of the women interviewed for Christine's book for inspiration."
Senator Coonan's speech is available to read on her website.
Maggie Tabberer's, Christine Hogan's and Lynley Marshall's speeches are all available to download as PDFs below.
Look at Me! was commissioned by the WWIT Project - a partnership between the AFC, the Seven, Nine and Ten Networks, ABC, SBS, ASTRA, FREE TV Australia and the Screen Producers Association of Australia. It is published by ABC Books and is available at ABC Shops, ABC Centres and selected bookstores.
RRP $35. ISBN 0 7333 1956 4.