The Sydney Morning Herald editor Judith Whelan has ended her 32-year career with Fairfax Media, resigning to join the ABC as head of spoken content.
Ms Whelan concludes a company career started in 1985 when she secured a cadetship alongside award-winning journalists Kate McClymont and Anne Davies.
In her new role at the ABC, Ms Whelan will oversee the public broadcaster’s capital city radio network, sports channel Grandstand and Radio National.
She has worked as a health and transport reporter, editor of Good Weekend for eight years, The Herald’s Saturday editor and Fairfax’s news director.
Ms Whelan was appointed editor of The Sydney Morning in March amid an editorial restructure in which Paul Baily was appointed editor of The Australian Financial Review and Mark Forbes replaced Andrew Holden as editor-in-chief of The Age.
The Herald grew its readership to 6.3 million under Ms Whelan’s leadership and was named news site of year at the 2016 PANPA Awards.
Judith Whalen speaks about The Sydney Herald on its 185th anniversary
Darren Goodsir, editor-in-chief of The Sydney Morning Herald, said he was “extremely sad about Judith’s departure, but also excited for her as a friend and a colleague”.
“It speaks volumes for Judith’s personal and professional capabilities that the national broadcaster so keenly sought her services,” Mr Goodsir said in an email to staff.
“But her recruitment also reflects how highly outside organisations regard the transformation of Fairfax and its metropolitan newsrooms in recent years – reforms led by executives such as Judith.”
The Sydney Morning Herald front pages through the years
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