Peter FitzSimons to deliver 2019 Andrew Olle Media Lecture

Peter FitzSimons AM
image - ABC

The 2019 Andrew Olle Media Lecture will be delivered by author and columnist Peter FitzSimons AM on Friday 1 November.

FitzSimons began his media career as a sports columnist for the The Sydney Morning Herald more than three decades ago. Since then he has co-hosted breakfast radio with broadcaster Mike Carlton and written more than 30 books on a range of subjects which include sporting and historical biographies and Australian war stories.

He currently writes a weekend column The Fitz Files for the The Sydney Morning Herald and The Sun-Herald and is a regular panellist on Nine’s Sports Sunday.

As a former Wallaby, FitzSimons played seven test matches for Australia in the late 1980s and early 1990s. He has been Chairman of the Australian Republic Movement since 2015 and is Chair and co-founder of the rugby charity the Cauliflower Club.  He is also a Pro-chancellor of Sydney University.

ABC Managing Director David Anderson said FitzSimons had been an outspoken commentator on many sporting, social and community issues.

“Peter never fails to grab your attention with his sharp and humorous commentary on issues that lie at the heart of what it means to be Australian.  He is a passionate advocate for press freedom and holding those in power accountable. I have no doubt his 2019 Andrew Olle Media Lecture will be insightful, passionate and personal – and one that will generate much discussion.  In short, everything that the lecture embodies.”

FitzSimons said he was “deeply honoured” to be delivering the Andrew Olle Media Lecture in 2019.

“I have been in awe of Andrew Olle ever since I first heard him on ABC Radio in the 1980s.  He was an exceptional journalist and broadcaster and I was lucky to call him a friend.”

FitzSimons follows a long line of distinguished Andrew Olle Media Lecture speakers which includes his wife, Lisa Wilkinson, as well as Caroline Wilson, Joseph Kahn, Waleed Aly, Helen McCabe, Kate McClymont, Mark Colvin, Laurie Oakes, Ray Martin AM, John Hartigan, John Doyle AM, Lachlan Murdoch, Kerry Stokes AC and Jana Wendt. 

The lecture is held in honour of one of the ABC’s iconic broadcasters, Andrew Olle. The Olle Fund for Brain Cancer research was set up following his death from a brain tumour in 1995. The money raised at the lecture goes directly to the Cure Brain Cancer Neuro-oncology Group at UNSW, which is now a world leader in personalised medicine for this type of cancer. 

The lecture will be delivered at a black-tie dinner at The Ivy Ballroom in Sydney on Friday 1 November. The evening will be hosted by ABC Radio Sydney Drive presenter Richard Glover.

The Andrew Olle Media Lecture will be broadcast nationally on Nightlife on Friday 1 November on ABC Radio from 11pm.

The lecture will also be broadcast on ABC NEWS channel, ABC and iview, with times to be announced.