ABC Upfront: Leigh Sales takes on new role as host of Australian Story

Leigh Sales

Sales stepped down as host of flagship news and current affairs show 7.30 in February

Leigh Sales will be back on ABC screens in 2023, having been announced as the new host of Australian Story. 

This will be only the second time that the show has had a permanent anchor, with the first being the late Caroline Jones

Speaking to Mediaweek, ABC acting director of entertainment and specialist Jennifer Collins said that she was thrilled to see Sales take on the new role.

“It’s really exciting, we love Leigh. She’s got such a great intelligence, creativity, and a great heart. I think she’s a perfect fit for Australian Story – it’s such a great series that is able to tell those personal stories in such illuminating ways. Year on year, Australian Story continues to deliver, and I think having Leigh at the helm of that is only going to strengthen that for us.”

Sales stepped down as host of flagship news and current affairs show 7.30 in February this year, after 11 years in the role.

At the time, Sales told 7.30 viewers: “I feel a strong sense of it being time to pass the baton to the next runner in the race and to take a break. The end of an election cycle feels like a good time to move on to something new at the ABC.

“The team at 7.30 is unparalleled in the media and I could not have more admiration or more gratitude for what they all do. It is an incredibly important program, there is no other show that does what 7.30 does night after night. I know the program is going to keep going from strength to strength, as it always has.”

Sarah Ferguson went on to take over as host of 7.30 in July.

Leigh Sales has won an impressive number of awards, including two Walkley Awards, the Walkley Book Award, and the George Munster Award for Independent Journalism. In 2019 she was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia for her services to broadcast journalism.

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