Jo Hall, one of Australia’s most experienced and distinguished reporters and presenters, this month celebrates 35 years of continuous service with the Nine Network.
Her warmth, professionalism and the trust that she has built with viewers over more than three decades on air have been an integral part of Nine’s dominance of the news landscape in Melbourne for so many years.
Jo began her journalism path with a cadetship on the Melbourne suburban newspaperWaverley Gazette before joining Nine News as a junior reporter in 1979.
She worked her way up the ranks, eventually becoming presenter of the weekend bulletins of Nine News in 1998. In this high-profile role, she presented some of the biggest stories of our times, including September 11, the Bali bombings, the Boxing Day Tsunami and the Black Saturday bushfires.
In 1990 Jo became the first woman to win the prestigious Thorn Award for journalism for her report on the siege at a Hawthorn Kindergarten in May 1989.
Another story almost cost Jo her life. Covering the Ash Wednesday bushfires at Anglesea, she and her camera crew were confronted by a wall of fire. “I jumped behind the wheel of the car and the crew hopped in the back. Had the engine not started I believe we wouldn't be here now,” she says.
Jo admits that stories about children affect her most and she can still be moved to tears by her work. But this is an enduring quality that makes her one of Melbourne’s most popular presenters.
“If you don’t appreciate or understand the severity of what you’re reporting, then you lose credibility and the viewers see that. It’s an honour and privilege to report the news and be invited into people’s homes to tell them what's gone on that day, and I don’t take it for granted,” she says.
Hugh Nailon, Director of Nine News in Melbourne, paid tribute to Jo.
“There are very few newsrooms that are fortunate enough to boast having anyone with the level of experience and compassion that Jo Hall brings to Nine,” said Nailon.
“Jo is an iconic face of Melbourne and a generation of people have grown up welcoming her into their living rooms. We are blessed to have Jo as a part of our team and I know I speak for everyone when I say that she is a highly respected, admired and much loved part of the Nine News family.”
Jo’s off-air interest’s branch deeper into the community and she regularly undertakes duties for breast cancer charities, including roles as ambassadors for Breast Screen Victoria andthe Mother’s Day Classic. And this year, Jo became a proud ambassador for The Royal Melbourne Walk, which raises much-needed funds for the Royal Melbourne Hospital.
These days, Jo has never been busier. She presents news updates on Channel Nine in Melbourne each afternoon; files regular special human interest stories across all Nine News bulletins; is a regular contributor to the ‘Chat Room’ segment on Nine’s national afternoon bulletin, Nine News Now; and presents the afternoon Nine News bulletin shown on Qantas flights.
Jo lives in inner suburban Melbourne and is an avid Collingwood supporter. She has four children - Rhyss (32), Tysyn (22) and 14 year old twins, Emmerson and Fynn.