Honour roll

The Honour Roll recognises past State and
Territory and National Award recipients

Australian of the Year

Nominee

2019 NSW Australian of the Year Nominee

Ms Joanne McCarthy

State: New South Wales

A warrior for truth throughout her career, journalist Joanne McCarthy’s body of work was a key catalyst for the creation of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. Writing over 1,000 articles about the abuse, cover-ups and the appalling treatment of survivors, she called wrong-doers to account.

A warrior for truth throughout her career, journalist Joanne McCarthy was a key catalyst for the creation of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse.

Joanne wrote over 1,000 articles documenting shocking sexual abuse of children in the Catholic and Anglican churches; the cover-ups and the appalling treatment of survivors. She was the driving force behind the Newcastle Herald's Shine the Light campaign, calling for a Royal Commission into child sexual abuse within the Church and other institutions.

When first breaking these stories, Joanne was making bold claims against powerful organisations, and speaking for the voiceless when no one else would listen. Joanne's body of work played a vital role in former Prime Minister Julia Gillard's decision to launch the Royal Commission. The Commission received almost 70,000 responses; held face-to-face sessions for over 8,000 survivors and reported more than 2,500 individuals to authorities.

Joanne is a loud-hailer for our community; tenacious in calling wrongdoers to account.

Photos