The Melbourne Press Club’s Victorian Media Hall of Fame has inducted its first living members, publisher Rupert Murdoch, Australian Olympic historian and former editor Harry Gordon and cartoonist Bruce Petty.
Mr Murdoch joins his father Keith, who was in the initial 30 Hall of Fame inductees last year, creating the only father-son combination to be honoured.
Press Club President Mark Baker said he was delighted by the success of the induction ceremony dinner and the positive media coverage that had flowed from it.
“It was impressive to see so many industry leaders and leading journalists come together to honour the best of our craft. At a time when many branches of the media industry are under pressure, it is important to affirm and celebrate the enduring importance of excellent journalism,” he said.
“The induction of our first living Hall of Famers – Rupert Murdoch, Harry Gordon and Bruce Petty – is a bridge between the greats of the past and the contemporary legends who will dominate next year’s induction in the third stage of the foundation of the Hall of Fame.”
Among the other 27 inducted last last week were fomer editor of The Age, Graham Perkin; the founding editor of Australian Associated Press, Duncan Hooper; broadcasters Norman Banks and Ron Casey; ABC managing director Sir Charles Moses, Nancy Dexter and Caroline Isaacson.
The judging panel said Rupert Murdoch had developed his inheritance of an afternoon newspaper in Adelaide into the second biggest media conglomerate in the world, bringing immense and controversial political influence. “His induction into the Hall of Fame was primarily based on his introduction of the fresh innovative national daily The Australian, which lost money for many of its first 50 years but forecd rival publishers to invest in quality journalism, thus lifting general standards.”
Last year’s first induction focused on Victoria’s first 100 years and last week’s second induction considered those who had begun to make their mark by 1970. Next year’s third group will include contemporary news people.
For the full list of inductees click here.