2012 Hall of Fame induction

The inaugural Victorian Media Hall of Fame induction dinner

They were part of, and shaped the history of, colonial Australia and of the Federation that gave birth to a nation. They were witness to the testing of that nation through two world wars. They lived remarkable lives and some died in the process.

First and foremost, they were journalists. And while a few might be figures of national renown, most have been largely forgotten, including the likes of Henry Seekamp, the first Victorian journalist to be jailed over editorial principle, Edward Cunningham, editor of The Argus who scored an exclusive interview with the wounded Ned Kelly, and early feminist Alice Henry, who was the first Australian newspaperwoman to be trained on the job.

In December 2012, Seekamp, Cunningham and Henry were among 20 men and women from the first century of Victorian journalism to be inducted into the Victorian Media Hall of Fame,  the precursor to the current national Australian Media Hall of Fame project. Though these inductees had roots in Victoria, most were figures who achieved greatness at the national level as it was being forged, and some had reputations that stretched far beyond.

The Melbourne Press Club's mission to establish a permanent home to record and honour the achievements of journalists, including reporters, editors, publishers and broadcasters, fulfills the aim of promoting excellence in journalism and recognising the enduring importance of such journalism in a healthy democracy.

Historian Geoffrey Blainey, who joined the Hall of Fame selection alongside former reporter, editor and author Harry Gordon and former Age editor Mike Smith, said of the initiative:

"The Press Club has argued that the contribution of the media to the history of this state and nation, for better or worse, should be widely known."

Geoffrey Blainey, 2012 Hall of Fame selection panel member

"Every profession, every calling, has its defects. The media – because it has to meet deadlines and often report controversial events – has perhaps more than its share of imperfections. This is all the more reason why Australians should acknowledge the thousands in the media who, living or dead, did their best, and honour the few whose best was superb," Blainey said.



Melbourne Press Club Victorian Media Hall of Fame dinner 2012

Event details


This event was held on 6 December 2012


Monash Law Chambers
555 Lonsdale Street





Ranald Macdonald on David Syme

Lachlan Murdoch speaking about his grandfather, Keith Murdoch


In the media

'Honouring the newsbreakers of a nation', Mark Baker, The Age, 8 December 2012

'Melbourne Press Club's Hall of Fame honours significant contributions' Herald Sun, 9 December 2012