ABC sports journalist Tracey Holmes has been honoured by the International Olympic Committee (IOC) with the 2021 Women and Sports Award for Oceania.
She is the first journalist to win the prestigious accolade, which the IOC said recognises her contribution to reporting on women’s sport and mentorship for the next generation of women sports journalists.
Holmes said: “In 1989 I started a weekly segment on the ABC called ‘Women in Sport’, now the ABC has a 50:50 project for its coverage and the sports department is the standout performer.”
“This award is a tribute to all those women athletes and women sports administrators who persevered without money, coverage or recognition to create a world today where women in many countries can do and can be whatever they so choose.
“It is also a tribute to my mother and father, from whom I learned we are all equal, and it is a tribute to all those – many of them men – who freely offered their mentorship and guidance throughout my career.”
A trailblazer for 30 years, Holmes was the first woman to be appointed as a sports broadcast trainee at the ABC and went on to become the first female reporter in its national sports department and the first host, male or female, of a national sports program, ABC Grandstand.
The Women in Sport program was influential in increasing coverage of women’s sport in Australia. As well as her broadcast and digital reporting Holmes hosts award-winning weekly sports show and podcast The Ticket.
Holmes is currently in Beijing reporting for the ABC on the Winter Olympics.
Honorary IOC member from Australia Kevan Gosper praised Holmes on her commitment to gender equality and the promotion of women in sports administration was integral to her professional work.
He said: “This is also an important acknowledgement by the IOC and the Women in Sport Commission recognising and rewarding the essential role the media play in how women in sport are portrayed and ensuring the equal coverage of women’s sport and sportswomen by the media.”