In these strange plague times, B&T is more determined than ever to unite the industry and revel in the glory of our industry’s best and brightest overachievers.
That’s why over the next few weeks we’ll be celebrating adland’s youngest and most talented individuals; that’s right, B&T‘s 30 Under 30 finalists.
There are 10 finalists in each category, and 10 categories overall. So, if you’re keen to see who made the ultimate list this year, now’s your chance. Let these individuals inspire you, make you seethe with jealousy and ultimately motivate you to do the best work you can, and enter the Awards in 2021.
Without further ado, here are the 10 Journalist/Producer finalists.
Amy Foyster, Intrepid Group
Since Amy was 15 years old, she knew she wanted to work in media in some capacity. After graduating, she took on the role as managing editor of a small trade publication, where she worked for two years. From there, she moved into the education sector as a content producer for a university. However, she’d always loved traveling and proceeded to land herself a job at Intrepid Travel as a copywriter. Now, nearly three years on, she has progressed from a copywriter in the APAC Marketing team to a content specialist in the Global Content team.
Some of her key achievements include: launched a student travel writing competition, in conjunction with RMIT; produced a 50-page Antarctica guidebook; was part of the team that launched Intrepid’s partnership with Lonely Planet; was shortlisted as a finalist for the 2017 Rising Star Award at Women in Travel.
Chantelle Schmidt, Pedestrian Group
At 19, Chantelle was enlisted as Acting Fashion Editor position at ACP (now Bauer) during her first year at university. After working at two PR agencies followed by 18 months launching US titan The Fashion Spot into the local market as Australian Editor, the perfect job came for Chantelle came up at PEDESTRIAN.TV – Native Content Editor.
As one of two editors across one publication in 2016, to now leading a fully fledged department of six across six publications in 2020, Chantelle’s biggest successes have been during the growth of Pedestrian Group and shaping the industry along the way. 1,000+ natives in 2019 year alone, from how to revive a freak in the sheets after a dry spell all the way through to smart home tech.
She is now the Group Native Content Manager and has even worked closely with the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) Australia to update their Native Advertising Handbook for 2020, proving my status and knowhow in the integrated content landscape.
Chloe Lal, Pacific Magazines
The idea of being trusted with leading the entire online execution for New Idea, WHO, New Idea, WHO, Girlfriend, That’s Life, New Idea Food & Practical Parenting (all before age 30) as digital content manager at Pacific was a daunting concept for Chloe, but a great challenge too. She is now the digital content. She started her career with an internship at then-Fairfax Media, before joining Take 5 magazine as editorial coordinator and junior writer. She was promoted into Bauer’s digital team, during which time she helped launch NowToLove.
Chloe then moved to Pacific Magazines as WHO’s Senior Online Editor. She increased traffic to its highest ever position, contributing to over 30% of the entire network. Six months in, she was promoted again and her role expanded to include responsibilities across six of Pacific titles. She now manages a team of producers and freelancers, developing original and bespoke content for Pac Mags’ range of brands.
Deirdre Fogarty, Triple M/ Southern Cross Austereo
Deirdre’s career began in September 2015 with a full-time position with The Australian Women’s Weekly’s newly launched food website, Food To Love. Nine months later, however, she was lured back into the world of radio to head-up the digital team at ARN. There, she dedicated 18 months to growing youth radio brand The Edge’s online presence.
It was during that time that she was nominated for her first Australian Commercial Radio Award in 2017, for Best Newcomer Off-Air. Then in October that year, she saw the role of Digital Content Lead advertised at Triple M Sydney and knew it was the perfect next step. Since then, she’s been promoted to Assistant Digital Content Director for the Triple M Network, has been nominated for her second ACRA and has conceptualised, scripted and directed multiple client campaigns, including a three-part native integration series for Mazda.
Elissa Ratliff, Pacific Magazines
In the first year of Elissa’s bachelor of Arts in Communications degree, she landed an internship at Mamamia. During her second year of university, she worked part-time at Mamamia, and by her third year, was in a full-time junior writing position. She made the leap from editorial to podcasting not long after finishing university and was part of the launch team for the Mamamia Podcast Network.
Within a few short years, she had become the Managing Producer of Podcasts overseeing a team of four producers, executive producing shows Mamamia Out Loud and No Filter and creating bespoke shows for clients that generated hundreds of thousands in revenue. One show, The Split, created for Westpac, won Gold at the International Native Ad Awards in 2019. In 2019, she was head-hunted for the role of Head of Audio at Pacific Magazines. She’s since been charged with building a podcast strategy for the Seven Network.
Katie Skelly, TheLatch— (Val Morgan Digital)
Katie’s journalism career had humble beginnings. While studying, she created a blog to better educate herself about digital and content production. She then felt confident to nominate herself when the opportunity was presented to assist the digital team of Bauer Media’s ELLE magazine, where she was interning. After a few days assisting the team, she was invited to join the Cosmopolitan, CLEO and DOLLY teams as a freelancer.
She then moved onto realestate.com.au as a content producer for the newly launched Lifestyle section in late 2017. Working within an agile environment, she conceptualised and lead the ‘Lifestyle News’ strategy which boosted readership by 16.2 percent. Outside the scope of editorial content production, she wrote scripts and starred as talent in videos, contributed to national radio segments on property and lifestyle, and pioneered one of the brand’s most successful social engagement initiatives, ‘memes’ for Lifestyle. She joined Val Morgan Digital’s TheLatch— in October 2019.
Natalie Jade Babic, Australian Radio Network
Natalie began her career at Bauer Media, working across titles including OK!, Cleo and Dolly.
In 2015, she moved to Bauer’s digital arm – Bauer Xcel Media, where she took on the role of Engagement Editor at The Australian Women’s Weekly. Here, she became stats obsessed and grew their socials by 180 per cent in six months.
In mid-2016, she moved to London, where she was the Social Media Manager for the UK’s largest parenting website, Netmums. Here, she successfully tapped into their engaged audience and saw a huge growth in their Facebook following, with it jumping from 500, 000 followers to 1.2 million in just over six months. In September 2018, she joined ARN as the Digital Content Director, where she drives the national content strategy across the company’s digital sites nationwide.
Tahlia Pritchard, Punkee
Tahlia is the editor of Punkee, Junkee Media’s Gen Z-focused website. She came to Punkee in May 2018 after three-and-a-half years at BuzzFeed Australia. Since she started at Punkee, it has seen enormous growth.
In her time at Punkee, it has dominated coverage of three hugely successful Bachelor titles: The Bachelor, The Bachelorette and Bachelor In Paradise, Punkee has also owned Married At First Sight: last year’s season saw Tahlia and a staff writer publish more than 150 articles, on top of the usual day-to-day coverage of Australian and global pop culture news.
Tayla Gentle, Freelance
Tayla moved to Guatemala from Melbourne when she was 18, which kicked off her career and ability to tell stories. She graduated from RMIT journalism with distinctions but knew she wanted more innovation and imagination than a traditional newsroom could offer. So she honed her copywriting skills in the publishing world; becoming the first Content Producer at Intrepid Travel; led a team of copywriters at startup Vinomofo; became Vinomofo’s first Head of Video; and launched Two Humans Travel – a successful creative agency with a focus on authentic storytelling.
While doing this, she freelanced as a travel journalist. In 2019, she wrote a piece about gender inequality in Nepal which saw her win the Australian Society of Travel Writer’s Rising Star award. She was also a top 5 Finalist for Best Travel Writer Australia at the National Tourism Industry Awards for a story on class divide and graffiti in South Africa. She currently freelances full-time, writing for publications such as Red Bull, Lonely Planet and adventure.com while also producing video shoots for international travel companies and tourism boards.
Vanessa Condemi, Australian Football League (AFL)
After completing a Bachelor of Arts (Media and Communications and History) and Master of Global Media Communication, Vanessa took on a full time position with Bastion Effect. In this role, her duties included a wide spectrum of marketing and communications specialties including, public relations, social media content management, content ideation, project management, events and activations, corporate communications, and community management.
Following her time there she began working in the AFL, following her passion for social media and content, leading the youth portfolio. This included looking after the participation and entertainment angles and building out a full multi platform network for youth. She’s now responsible for implementing and push new innovative solutions, such as new content formats, the first introduction of TikTok for the AFL, building out an entertainment network.
p.s There’s no big in-person party like usual this year and we’re going to have to content ourselves with virtual drinking games and remote flirting. We’re rapidly figuring out just how the fuck we’re actually going to do that so stay tuned, but don’t buy any bloody tickets just yet.
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