Speakers Profile - Julia Baird

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Julia Baird is an award winning journalist and best selling author based in Sydney, Australia. She hosts The Drum on ABCTV and writes columns for the Sydney Morning Herald, the Age and the New York Times. Her writing has appeared in a range of publications including Newsweek, The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, the Guardian, the Good Weekend, The Sydney Morning Herald, the Sun-Herald, The Monthly, Time and Harpers Bazaar.

Her new book, Phosphorescence: On awe, wonder, and the things that sustain you when the work goes dark, is a number one best seller in Australia.

Her much lauded biography of Queen Victoria was published in several countries and made one of the New York Times' critics best books of 2016.

Victoria the Queen, Julia's exquisitely wrought and meticulously researched biography, brushes the dusty myth off this extraordinary monarch.The New York Times Book Review (Editor's Choice)

"Ms. Baird's uncommonly frisky biography is outstanding for its liveliness and originality." Janet Maslin, The New York Times.

Baird spent several years working in the US. In 2005, she was a fellow at the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press and Public Policy at Harvard, researching the global response to American opinion in the lead-up to the Iraq War. Shortly afterwards she was appointed senior editor at Newsweek, where she was responsible for cover stories on such subjects as the hidden world of surrogacy, the history of climate science denial, the science of hate and the way gender impacts voting in American politics. She became a columnist there, as well as at the Philadelphia Inquirer.

She has had a wide-ranging career in print and broadcast journalism both in the United States and Australia. Her work has earned her four Walkley Our Watch Awards, (including the Gold) for her reporting on domestic violence, a Walkley Award for team election reporting, and two further Walkley
nominations, for analysis and commentary and for Victoria: The Queen.

Baird's history Ph.D., on female politicians and the media, formed the basis of her first book, Media Tarts: How the Australian Press Frames Female Politicians (2004). Baird has also taught history and made radio documentaries on subjects as diverse as black metal music and convent education.

Baird received both her B.A. and Ph.D. in history from Sydney University. She is a regular commentator on television and radio.