Women’s voices are underrepresented in the media and public policy debates, on panels and at events, on boards, in agriculture management and law partnerships, in the c-suite, in startups, in sport and in awards. Women’s work is undervalued and underpaid, with a gender pay gap in every industry and occupation level in Australia. Even women’s jokes are discounted.
Why? Expertise, acumen and leadership are often perceived, even unconsciously, as masculine characteristics. Those already in the public eye get chosen to speak/write/win, thus reinforcing the status quo of what experts/honourees/winners look like. And women frequently play down their expertise, or are reticent about self-promotion (and are already frantically busy, thanks all the same).
Our goal is redressing the gender imbalance and improving women’s representation and agency. Our philosophy in action means mostly working with women from a broad range of backgrounds. But as long as female agency is part of your project, we’re keen to hear from you! (Unless your name’s Andrew.)
Multi-award-winning investigative journalist and campaign consultant Gina McColl founded Women’s Agency in 2017.
After two decades as a senior editor and investigative journalist, she could see how media disruption and the contraction of newsrooms around the globe presented threats and opportunities to women’s equality and their visibility and audibility in public debates. She committed to act.
Her depth of journalist experience – previous appointments include deputy editor of The Age’s investigations team and of The Sunday Age, BRW Rich List editor, arts editor of The Age, and reporting on personal finance, management, innovation, social affairs, education, health, not-for-profits, consumer affairs and technology – gives her broad and deep understanding of the Australian economy, community and global trends. She has won multiple awards, including the 2017 Gold Our Watch Award, administered by the Walkley Foundation, for her series on sexual harassment.
Gina is also a seasoned campaigner, having played a leading role in press freedom, editorial independence and gender equity campaigns during her time as vice-president of the journalists’ union, MEAA and director of the Walkley Foundation.
In 2018, she led the ABC’s campaign to engage high-profile, eminent and everyday Australians in the role of the ABC and the future of public broadcasting. In 2017, she was media director for not-for-profit Go Gentle Australia, founded by Andrew Denton, during its five-month campaign in support of the Victorian Government’s historic voluntary assisted dying law reforms. The campaign was a GQ Australia Social Force Award Finalist in 2017.
Gina is also founder and director of investigative agency The Tell and is certified in Investigative Services (Certificate III) and Government Investigations (Certificate IV).; Victorian Investigator Licence 962-139-90S.