2024 Our Watch Award for Excellence in Reporting on Violence Against Women winner announced

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Author: Our Watch media team
Posted: 24 Jun, 2024
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    Jessica Lodge, Melissa Downes, and Adam Buncher from Nine Entertainment Co. have been named the winners of the 2024 Our Watch Award for Hannah’s Story, an in-depth investigation into the murders of Hannah Clarke and her three children. 

    The Nine team’s win was announced in Sydney tonight alongside all the winners in the Walkley Foundation’s 2024 Mid-Year Celebration of Journalism

    Jessica Lodge, Adam Buncher and Melissa Downes from Nine Entertainment Co with Patty Kinnersly, Our Watch CEO.
    From left to right: Jessica Lodge, Adam Buncher and Melissa Downes from Nine Entertainment Co with Patty Kinnersly, Our Watch CEO.

    Our Watch has been recognising and rewarding excellence in reporting on violence against women and children since 2013, initially through the Our Watch Awards – administered by the Walkley Foundation – and from 2019 onwards through the Our Watch Award at the Mid-Year Celebration of Journalism. 

    Jess Lodge is a Senior Producer and Melissa Downes is a Presenter with 9News Queensland. Hannah’s Story is their first podcast and the project they’re most proud of in their careers. Adam Buncher is a 9Podcasts producer, whose sound design elevated this podcast to the highest quality of audio journalism. 

    Our Watch CEO Patty Kinnersly said this powerful podcast series honours and shares Hannah, Aaliyah, Laianah and Trey’s memory thoughtfully and with care through the voice of Hannah’s family and her friends. 

    “Jess, Melissa and Adam take the audience on a deep dive into the non-physical forms of violence that Hannah experienced for many years, highlighting the harm and danger of this type of violence, which is usually present ahead of extreme violence against women. 

    “This podcast shows how media reporting has evolved over the past decade from once only covering the final extreme violence, to now seeking to truly understand and educate the public on the drivers of violence and the behaviours that perpetrators display before escalating to murder, including coercive control.  

    “I commend Jess, Melissa and Adam in setting the standard for journalism and showcasing the power of media in helping the broader public understand this insidious violence, and ensure that system-wide  learning and change occurs.”

    Previous award winners 

    2023, Richard Willingham, ABC for a series of stories shining a light on victims of sexual assault being forced to wait for forensic examination due to doctor shortages.  

    2022, Bethany Atkinson-Quinton and Madison Griffiths for Broadwave, “Tender: Roia Atmar” published on Broadwave Pods. 

    2021, Samantha Maiden, news.com.au, for a series focused on allegations of rape in Parliament House.  

    2020, Nina Funnell for the Let Her Speak series of articles, published in news.com.au. 

    2019, Sarah Dingle and the Background Briefing Team, Radio National, ABC for Australia On Trial: Carers who kill, Slavery in the suburbs, Murder on Trial

    Our Watch and the Walkley Foundation

    The objective of Our Watch’s ongoing work with the Walkley Foundation is to improve the quality of reporting on violence against women and their children by building awareness of gender inequality as setting the underlying context for this violence. Access guides for reporting about violence against women and their children.

    Media contact

    Please contact media@ourwatch.org.au or call 0448 844 930.

    If you cover this story, or any story regarding violence against women and children, please include the following tagline:

    1800RESPECT is the national domestic, family, and sexual violence counselling, information and support service. If you or someone you know is experiencing, or at risk of experiencing, domestic, family or sexual violence, call 1800RESPECT on 1800 737 732, chat online via www.1800RESPECT.org.au, or text 0458 737 732.   Men’s Referral Service: 1300 766 491 

    Access guides for reporting about violence against women and their children.

    Our Watch

    Our Watch is a national leader in Australia’s work to stop violence against women and their children before it starts. The organisation was created to drive nation-wide change in the practices, norms, and structures that lead to violence against women and children. Read more about Our Watch here.

    Interview being recorded with subject in view of a camera, we are behind the camera.

    Information for journalists looking for professional development, including safety and wellbeing, the Our Watch Fellowship and Our Watch Award.