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Respected radio presenter, current affairs journalist and political correspondent, Fran Kelly hosts the agenda-setting program RN Breakfast.
Though Fran has become a feature of the ABC's coverage of local and world affairs on both radio and television, her career may well have taken a very different direction; after studying arts at Adelaide University, majoring in literature and classics, Fran became part of the Adelaide and Melbourne music scenes at the end of the 1970s.
She was the singer for several bands, most notably an all-girl new wave band, Toxic Shoc, and worked as the Activities Director for Adelaide's Flinders University. She moved to Melbourne to take up the post of Entertainment Director for La Trobe University, booking some of biggest bands of the day including Simple Minds, Hunters and Collectors, Cold Chisel and Icehouse. She regularly packed out the 2,500 capacity venue and was also responsible for one of the first gigs by INXS - at a time when people weren't even sure how to say their name.
From 1984, Fran broadened her experience in arts management as the coordinator of the Statewide Women's Arts Festival for Victoria's 150th Anniversary celebrations, managing 26 staff over 18 months and putting on events across the state.
Her change of tack into current affairs journalism had its seeds in her first foray into radio: also in 1984 Fran worked on Melbourne RRR's Backchat program, which featured women's current affairs, issues and talkback. The experience sparked a desire to embark on a new career.
An unlikely application for a senior current affairs position with the ABC turned out to be her lucky break; though she didn't get the job, Fran was eventually called back to fill in for a few weeks. Then in 1988, she was invited to take up a three month position in Sydney with The Drum, the current affairs program of the ABC's youth radio station, triple j.
Her talent for current affairs was soon spotted by other departments at the ABC and after 18 months, Fran moved to work on ABC Radio's flagship current affairs programs AM and PM, heard then, as now, across Australia via ABC Local Radio and ABC RN.
In 1993 she moved to the heart of Australian politics, working for ten years in various roles within the Canberra press gallery. Initially Fran remained with AM and PM and within a year was their Chief Political Correspondent and Bureau Chief. In 1997 she swapped studios, joining ABC RN's Breakfast program as the political correspondent.
Another big twist in Fran's career came in 2001 when she took on her first job on Australian TV. In 2001 she became political editor for ABC TV's 7.30 Report. After two years she took up an overseas posting as the ABC's Europe correspondent based in London.
In March 2005, Fran called time on London, returning home to Australia to take up her current position. She revels in Breakfast's wide brief, which has reignited her passion for the arts, sport, issues and travel, and is still in the thick of Australian and world politics.