Meet our 2023 Journalist of the Year finalists

2023 Journalist of the year finalists

We are delighted to introduce our finalists for one of the most high-profile categories at the 2023 Rural and Regional Journalism and Photography Awards.

The work of our finalists stand at the pinnacle of rural and regional journalism. Though their stories and subjects may vary, their perseverance, passion, diligence, and compassion shine through in their narratives.

We extend our congratulations to our exceptional finalists!

Finalists – listed in alphabetical order

Tamara McDonald – Geelong Advertiser

Tamara has consistently broken news and delivered hard-hitting stories this year.

Her high profile work included breaking the news of sexual assault by a now-disgraced GP, interviewing a widow whose footballing husband died from a head knock-related disease, and telling the story of a young woman who miscarried while waiting to be seen at a hospital’s emergency room.

Giving voice to vulnerable people and sharing their stories is a hallmark of Tamara’s journalism.

She is a key member of her newsroom and a strong leader to her peers.

Jeremy Story Carter – ABC News

Jeremy has been a prolific producer of high-quality digital-first rural and regional content, using a wide range of platforms. His in-depth photojournalism features have drawn extensive online engagement.

His diverse work this year included covering the threat of FMD entering the country, the troubles within the Bureau of Meteorology, and sexism in the beer industry.

Jeremy’s stories are regularly accompanied by his strong original photography, and his audio and television packages have received wide praise.

He is a passionate, highly skilled reporter who tells his stories with empathy and care.

Bec Symons – ABC Gippsland

Bec is a remarkable journalist with a genuine and empathetic storytelling style.

Her knack for building connections, combined with meticulous attention to detail, enables her to uncover and tackle complex and emotionally challenging stories.

Her work this year included exposing the infiltration of a political party by a church, shedding light on the plight of a young homeless indigenous mother, and recounting the story of an up-and-coming AFL player whose life derailed after alleged sexual assaults by his coach.

Bec’s work is characterised by a commitment to engaging with people who might otherwise be overlooked. Her reporting has garnered national recognition in South East Victoria.

Andrew Thomson – Warrnambool Standard

A veteran police and courts journalist, Andrew led the reporting of a compelling, once-in-a-career story – of a double murder and suicide – which he covered 24/7 for over 2 months.

He spearheaded the extensive coverage on a local, state, national and international level, and used his incredible ability to cultivate contacts with the police and the community to break these stories.

Andrew’s stories were the most widely read at The Standard this year.

Harrison Tippet – Geelong Advertiser/ABC Geelong

Harrison’s journalistic integrity and deep commitment to telling stories that matter are commendable.

His work this year included covering the controversial closure of a homelessness charity, investigating allegations of grooming at a college, and telling the story of a fatal car crash with a Fuel Tanker on Boxing Day.

His ability to give a voice to the vulnerable and enact change through his reporting is a testament to his journalistic prowess, ethics and writing acumen.

The impact of Harrison’s work leaves a lasting and meaningful mark on the lives of individuals and the community.

Prue Bentley – ABC Victorian Statewide Drive

Celebrate with us!

Join Prue Bentley, Victorian Statewide Drive radio presenter, as she takes on the role of our master of ceremonies for our Awards Night.

It’s set to be an evening of celebration, inspiration, and recognition, providing a wonderful opportunity to connect with colleagues in the industry.


Event Details

Date: Friday, 27 October 2023
Time: 6.30pm for a 7pm start

Event Location: 51 Little Malop St, Geelong VIC 3220

Ticket sales have now closed.

Planning to stay in Geelong?

Book via Quest Apartments and receive a 5 per cent discount using code RPCV or Rydges with an ambassador 10pc discount using code RPCV.

Further Information

Phone: Bryce Eishold on 0458 588 449