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20 March 1945 |
Melbourne, Victoria Australia
Mal Walden (born 20 May 1945) is a former Australian journalist and television news presenter based in Melbourne. Until his retirement, he was the longest continually serving face on Australian television with 43 years presenting. Walden was the main presenter of Melbourne's Ten Eyewitness News from Monday to Wednesday until 2013.
According to Walden himself, upon his final news bulletin for Network Ten, he had presented around 12,000 bulletins.
In 2011, Walden celebrated 50 years of broadcasting. Joining an elite club of past media professionals preceding him. Upon his semi-retirement, he had been in the media broadcasting as a journalist for 52 years (53 years in Network Ten's Melbourne newsroom at 2014).
Walden is continually remembered as a veteran in the field, with not many surpassing his career (Peter Hitchener close behind). He was always known for his on-air humour, usually when technical issues occurred live or following an unusual story or live-cross (usually with Melbourne weatherman Mike Larkan). Walden has also covered many major state, national and international stories in his career. Walden (even in his later years) was also proposed for his on-air presentation and handle, especially during un-scheduled events or for encouraging his fellow journalists (one of which is currently co-presenter alongside Stephen Quartermain - Candice Wyatt).
Starting his media career in 1961, he worked as a cadet journalist in radio. After joining radio station 3DB, Walden moved to television to sister station HSV-7 in early 1970 as a reporter. One of his first assignments at HSV-7 was to go to Darwin to report on the devastation of Cyclone Tracy which ripped through the tropical city on 25 December 1974 (Christmas Day).
On 27 March 1987, Walden was sacked by new management after HSV-7 was taken over by the Fairfax group. He was told of his dismissal only minutes before going on air to present what became his final news bulletin for the station.
Exactly a month later, Mal joined the Eyewitness News team at ATV-10 as a reporter and presenter of the segment "Mal's Melbourne", presenting human interest stories. Walden continued as relieving news presenter, reporter and weekend news presenter at ATV-10, as well as presenting special programming such as Young Australian of the Year and ATV-10's 30th Anniversary.
In 1996, Walden took on the role of chief news presenter after David Johnston announced his return to HSV-7. He was appointed news presenter of the station's Ten News at Five alongside Jennifer Hansen and later Helen Kapalos. He celebrated 30 years in television news on 8 June 2000. In 2004, he published a detailed history of ATV-10 to commemorate the station's upcoming 40th anniversary. In September 2010, Walden was announced as presenter of Melbourne's 6:30 pm Ten Evening News bulletin which commenced in January 2011 but was axed four months later. After Helen Kapalos was dismissed in December 2012, Walden became solo presenter of Ten News at Five.
In 2006, Walden became the longest continually serving face on Australian television, following 36 years presenting.
In June 2011, Walden celebrated 50 years of broadcasting (media), a special title to hold.
In June 2013, Mal downscaled his role with Network Ten ahead of his intended retirement at the end of 2013 after 40 years as a news presenter and reporter. Walden became the Monday to Wednesday presenter with Stephen Quartermain presenting the Thursday and Friday night editions.
Walden had been in the media for over than 50 years.
Walden and his wife (Pauline Durham, who originally worked in the programming department at HSV-7) have two adult children, twins Sarah and James. He is a keen gardener and fisherman and loves golf.
- Veteran Channel Ten newsreader Mal Walden to step down | Herald Sun 30 June March 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013
- Knox, David (4 December 2013). "Television newsreader Mal Walden reads his last bulletin for Channel 10". TV Tonight. Retrieved 5 December 2013.
- Ten News - Mal Walden
|Seven National News
1979 - 1987
|Ten Eyewitness News Melbourne
1996 - 2013
|Ten's Evening News
24 January 2011 – 1 April 2011
6.30 with George Negus