Anne Summers AO
Political & Social Author, Columnist & Speaker
Anne Summers is a dynamic speaker who addresses key issues facing Australia in the 21st century. Anne brings unparalleled authority and credibility to the subject of the position of women in Australia. She has inspired a generation of young people to think differently about their country, their work, their families and their futures.
Anne Summers ran the Federal Office of the Status of Women from 1983 to 1986 when Bob Hawke was Prime Minister and was an advisor on women’s issues to Prime Minister Paul Keating prior to the 1993 federal election.
In 1987 in New York she became editor-in-chief of Ms. – America’s landmark feminist magazine – and the following year, with business partner Sandra Yates, bought Ms. and Sassy magazines in the second only women-led management buyout in US corporate history.
Anne Summers was a leader of the generation and the movement that changed Australia for women. Her involvement in the women’s movement has earned her community respect and has been honoured with Honorary Doctorates from both Flinders University (1994) and the University of New South Wales (2000).
She was involved in helping start Elsie, Australia’s first women’s refuge and Refractory Girl, a women’s studies journal.
In 1975 she became a journalist, first on the National Times, then became Canberra bureau chief for the Australian Financial Review and then the paper’s North American editor.
In 1975 her book Damned Whores and God’s Police changed the way women were perceived in this country. This bestseller was updated in 1994 and, again, in 2002 and was continuously in print until 2008. Her other books include Gamble for Power, an account of the 1983 federal elections, Ducks on the Pond, her autobiography, and On Luck, an essay published in 2008.
Anne Summers is a former chair of the board of Greenpeace International. She writes an occasional opinion column for the Sydney Morning Herald, and was Deputy President of Sydney’s Powerhouse Museum until December 2008. She is on the Board of the Institute for Cultural Diversity. In 1989 she was made an Officer in the Order of Australia for her services to journalism and to women.
Anne Summers speaks about:
Anne Summers’ topics include the Triple Bottom Line, Women and Work in the 21st Century, The Great Australian Challenge, and The Power of None: Australia and the Global Context.