Sam Lane is a pioneering broadcast journalist and author. Her award-winning work spans print, television, podcast and radio.
Sam’s first book ROAR is the definitive account of the birth of the Australian Football League’s elite competition for women, published in 2018 and formally endorsed by Australia’s first woman Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
ROAR became part of the global movement for gender equity, diversity and inclusion, with the AFLW catalysing profound change on and off-field. Sam delivers keynote presentations on the topic, in Australia and abroad, including one at the Australian Embassy in Paris.
Sam is currently writing the story of Australian sporting luminary, Erin Phillips, due for publication in 2024.
A trailblazer on television, Sam covered men’s AFL on Channels Seven and Ten for more than 15 years. In 2013, she joined Channel Seven’s prime time Saturday night footy coverage and was part of Seven’s record-breaking broadcast of the 2018 Commonwealth Games. Sam was a panellist on Channel Ten’s Before the Game for 10 years, and also featured in the ABC’s Agony Aunts series.
She has covered every season of AFL women’s since its inception in 2017 and currently hosts a weekly ABC podcast The W – with Sharni and Sam.
Her journalism awards include two Melbourne Press Club Quills, a Walkley, two VicHealth awards, the AFL Players’ Association and AFL Coaches’ Association media prizes, three VicSport awards and an Australian Sports Commission media award.
As a keynote speaker, panel moderator, event MC and conference host, Sam’s clients include QBE, Virgin Australia, Mercedes Benz Australia, National Australia Bank, Sport Australia, the National
Gallery of Victoria, CGU, and the Sydney and Richmond AFL football clubs. She co-hosted the Australian national speaking tour of basketball legend Luc Longley in sold-out shows through 2022, and moderated live events with Australian of the Year Adam Goodes in 2019.
Sam sits on the Australian Institute of Sport’s Athlete Wellbeing and Engagement Advisory Committee, chaired by Olympic icon Ian Thorpe, and is a member of the Board of Directors of The Chappell Foundation, raising funds for homeless youth. She sits on Sydney’s AFLW steering committee and is an ambassador for Flourish Australia.
In her distinguished journalism career, Sam wrote for Melbourne’s The Age and Sunday Age, and The Sydney Morning Herald newspapers for 13 years, reporting from Beijing, London, Rio and Delhi at Olympic and Commonwealth Games.
She has reported from the men’s Tour de France three times, and the landmark first women’s Tour de France in 2022 on ABC television, radio and podcast. Sam wrote and produced two series of number one-rating The Originals podcast for AFL club, Richmond, in 2020-21.
Sam speaks French, studying at the Université Michel de Montaigne in Bordeaux to complete a Diploma of Modern Languages (French), and has a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Melbourne.
TRAILBLAZING AND “ONE-OUT” WOMEN
A pioneer on TV, radio and in print in Australian sport, Sam discusses the pros and cons of being a “one-out woman” in a workplace, the value of allies, and overcoming roadblocks.
A “MOVEMENT BIGGER THAN SPORT” – GAME CHANGING ON AND OFF FIELD
Sam discusses the global rise of women in sport on field – leadership, pay and other equality battles, including sexism, homophobia and other systemic discrimination.
DAUGHTERS, DADS AND MUMS
Sam shares the life-changing story of losing her Mum when she was 10, and moving in with her Dad – sport broadcaster Tim Lane. How a sole child, single parent and three cat family muddled through, with Sam eventually catching the sports journalism bug and making her own mark in Australian sports broadcasting and journalism.
“I once joked about playing full-forward for the Western Bulldogs. At the time, that was an impossible dream for any woman. But not anymore. The AFLW has unlocked a new wave of Australian sporting heroes for young girls, where ambition to play footy is no longer inhibited by gender. Best on ground to Samantha Lane for this inspiring account of the resilience and determination it took to get the League to a national level, and showcasing the depth of talent amongst its players.”
“It was a pleasure and a gift to work with Sam Lane as we launched the inaugural Sorrento Writers Festival. Her moderating skills across a variety of panel subjects were outstanding. She applied a journalist’s forensic focus and innate curiosity to her research, and her natural warmth and energy made each of her events inclusive, safe and exciting.
“Sam played a key role in our inaugural Festival and I hope will continue to visit us each year.
“Audiences love her. Panel members love her. Festival volunteers love her. And I was thrilled to have Sam by my side as we worked through the panels she would host and wondered how they might zing. Each session under Sam’s guidance was a hit – a fascinating, provocative, engaging and amazing place to be.”
“Sam Lane is intuitive, smart, quick, highly professional, and a major journalistic talent. I am thrilled she joined the Sorrento Writers Festival as one of our moderators, and I am honoured to call her my friend.”
“The involvement of Sam Lane in a public event – sporting or otherwise – lifts it to another level. Her research is impeccable, which is always a joy for the interviewee. Her sense of humour”
“Sam combines attention to detail with a deeply intelligent and humble approach to interviewing; knowing that her job is to find the story, not to big-note herself.
“She is always prepared, always listening, always a class act.”
“The ultimate professional.”
“Sam is one of the very best in the business. Combining intelligence and insight with humour and hard work, she is the complete package, whether as a host, reporter, interviewer or MC.”
“A genuine interest in her subjects is the magic ingredient that so many other reporters and interviewers are missing. Subjects reveal their true selves to Sam – often on national television! And it’s never about Sam, which is something all-too rare in our industry.”
“Sam possesses a unique balance of knowledge and preparation with spontaneous wit and perceptive responses.”
“An award-winning journo who’s cracked all media: TV, radio and print. Sam is part-magician, part-counsellor. She draws out some never heard stories … her subjects confide in her, laugh and cry with her.”
“I’ve chosen Sam to write my book because I trust her. She’s genuine, smart, caring and passionate – in her life and in her profession.”
“Sam is able to draw out the best in us all. Her humility and graciousness shine through in any forum.”
“Sam is a social entrepreneur who has turned her formidable intellect and powers of persuasion to using women’s sport as a vehicle for social change. Well informed, articulate and hugely engaging, Sam sees advancing women’s sport as leverage for improving social equity, particularly for women, throughout the community.”
“Sam is a rare talent.”
“Anything she has to say is worth listening to.”
“ROAR is one of the most important and insightful representations of the emergence of women’s football going around.”
“Sam is our first-choice host of the National Sports & Physical Activity Convention.
“She brings out the very best of our global keynote speakers, whether online or in-person. Everyone feels that Sam wants them to be their best.”
“I would highly recommend Sam for anyone needing a top-tier MC for their event.”
“Sam is the consummate professional at everything she does, from sports journalism to public speaking, and advocating for the causes she believes in.”