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Congratulations Rachel Durrant - recipient of the 2018 Bridget Whelan Scholarship!


Labor Leader Bill Shorten announced in Parliament House that the winner of the annual $10,000 Bridget Whelan Scholarship is Rachel Durrant, currently the Adviser on Communications and Campaigns from The Hon. Tanya Plibersek’s office.


The event was attended by our Patron, Elizabeth Reid AO, Senators, MPs, staffers and special guests including Bridget Whelan’s sister and niece.

Rachel has worked for the Deputy Leader of the Opposition for 6 years, and has a real passion for exploring innovative ways to use communications and campaign techniques.  A particular area of interest for her is how the party campaigns in inner city seats where the changing demographics and geography means that traditional methods of direct voter contact don’t work.

The scholarship funds will be used to travel to the US and meet with Democrat campaign units and other groups using digital campaigning techniques to investigate the latest ways of integrating digital and field campaigning.  This information will be able to be shared with campaign teams across the country and help shape the narrative of policies for upcoming elections.

Thanks to all of those who shared this special event with us, including last year’s winner Karelle Logan who gave a report on her participation in a Wellstone Training Camp on progressive campaigning techniques.

The Elizabeth Reid Network would like to thank the following people for their generous donations towards the 2018 Bridget Whelan Scholarship fund...

The Whelan Family

Ms Catherine Morgan

Ms Kirsten Mulley

Senator The Hon. Kristina Keneally

The Hon. Darren West, MLC

The Hon. Mark Dreyfus QC, MP

Ms Janine Freeman, MLA

Ms Jessica Shaw, MLA

Ms Joan Pease, MP

Ms Katherine Margar

The Hon. Sharon Bird, MP

Ms Trish Doyle, MP

The Hon. Julie Collins, MP

Ms Sophie Cotsis, MP

Ms Cassie Rowe, MLA

Mr Luke Foley, MP

Dr Susan Close, MP

Dr Jim Chalmers, MP

Mrs Lisa O'Malley, MLA

Ms Meryl Swanson, MP

The Hon. Stephen Dawson, MLC

Senator Deb O’Neill, MP

Ms Anita Dow, MP

Ms Ella Haddad, MP

Ms Sharon Claydon, MP

Ms Jo Haylen, MP

Ms Jenny Aitchison, MP

Ms Nat Cook, MP

Ms Yasmin Catley, MP

Ms Alison Hill, 

Senator Jenny McAllister

Senator The Hon. Claire Moore

Dr Anne Aly MP

Mr Brian Mitchell MP

The Hon. Roger Cook

The Hon. Tanya Plibersek, MP

The Hon. Wayne Swan, MP

The Hon. Jenny Macklin, MP

The Hon. Daniel Andrews, MP

The Hon. Stephen Jones, MP

Ms Chris Black

Ms Annie O'Rourke

The Hon. Annastacia Palaszczuk

“I was so thrilled to win the inaugural Bridget Whelan Scholarship - but even more blown away by the opportunity it gave to me travel to the US and learn first hand from progressive campaigners and organisers. I strongly encourage every woman staffer who has a passion for furthering their career, and the ALP’s election prospects, to apply for this amazing opportunity”.


Karelle Logan,

Inaugural winner of the Bridget Whelan Scholarship, 2017.


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