SCA Chief Content Officer, Dave Cameron, today announced the appointment of former ABC executive, Melanie Withnall to the newly created position of Head of News and Information.
In her role, Withnall will be responsible for leading the overall broadcast and on-demand news function and implementing a growth strategy to further expand SCA’s news, information and current affairs content portfolio on digital platform LiSTNR, and across the Hit and Triple M networks.
Withnall joins SCA from the ABC where she was Manager of ABC Radio Sydney and led the migration of ABC Radio Sydney to digital platforms, developed new programming, led emergency broadcasting, and developed programming strategies that took ABC Radio Sydney to the No.2 station with record audience reach.
Withnall has led teams to win a Walkley Award and multiple New York Radio Festival Awards. She has more than 18 years’ experience in radio news, starting her broadcasting career as Executive Producer on 2UE and 2GB. She moved to ABC Radio Sydney as a Mornings Executive Producer, before joining Sydney Educational Broadcasting 2SER 107.3 as Managing Director and CEO for seven years.
She has been a board member of the Community Broadcasting Association of Australia and has lectured at UTS and AFTRS.
Dave Cameron says, “It’s a real coup to have someone with Melanie’s experience join SCA at such an exciting time in our rapid digital audio growth. Melanie’s proven leadership in the recent success of ABC Radio Sydney will be hugely valuable in driving SCA’s news and information content expansion on LiSTNR, which already includes The Briefing, Australia Today with Steve Price, Australia Today’s Morning Agenda with Natarsha Belling, and multi-market Locals’ Guides on top of our 99 radio stations. We are very excited to have Melanie join SCA and help cement our position as Australia’s biggest audio content creator.”
Commenting on her new role, Withnall says, “I am really excited to be joining SCA at such an exciting time, with news and information more important than ever and an important pillar on Hit, Triple M and LiSTNR. I look forward to finding SCA’s unique voice in the market and working with such a great team. ”
Withnall joins SCA on 15 November, and alongside the recent appointment of Cathrine McVeigh as Head of Audio Production and Operations, now completes the SCA Content Leadership team across both broadcast and LiSTNR.
ABC Director of Regional and Local Judith Whelan has told radioinfo: “We’re sad to be losing such an outstanding manager as Melanie. She has been an exceptional leader of an exceptionally high-performing team at ABC Radio Sydney, helping see the station to record audience numbers. We’ll miss her editorial experience and ability to connect with diverse audiences across Sydney, and across all broadcast platforms. We wish her the very best in her new role at Southern Cross Austereo.”
The ABC has begun seeking a replacement for the role of Manager, ABC Radio Sydney with an appointment expected to be made in October.