Adam Spencer

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For the curler, see Adam Spencer (curler).
Adam Spencer
Adam Spencer 255.JPG
Spencer in 2014
Birth name Adam Barrington Spencer
Born 29 January 1969 (1969-01-29) (age 48)[1]
Sydney, Australia
Station(s) 702 ABC Sydney
Network ABC Local Radio
Country Australia
Previous show(s) 702 ABC Sydney (2006–2013)
Triple J Breakfast (1999–2004)
Spouse(s) Mel Spencer (m. 2006-2016)
Children 2

Adam Barrington Spencer (born 29 January 1969) is an Australian radio presenter, comedian, and media personality. He first came to fame when he won his round of the comedic talent search Raw Comedy in the mid-1990s. Soon thereafter, he began working at Triple J, on mid-dawn and drive shifts before hosting the Triple J Breakfast Show with Wil Anderson.

He is a patron of science-related events and programs, including the University of Sydney's Eureka Prize, a "lateral-thinking" science prize.[2] He is a member of the Sleek Geek Week tour along with Karl Kruszelnicki, as well as performing his own comedy at events around the country.

In October 2015 he was named as the number one ticket holder for the Sydney Swans for season 2016, where he is also a regular MC for events and presentations.[3]

Early life[edit]

Born on 29 January 1969, in Sydney, Spencer grew up in the Hunters Hill/Gladesville area.[4]

Spencer was born without the muscle levator palpebrae superioris in his right upper eyelid, leading to permanent ptosis (drooping of the upper eyelid) and noticeable facial asymmetry. He later received a transplant from a donor in an operation performed by eye surgeon Fred Hollows, allowing him to "open" that eye.

Spencer attended St Aloysius' College in Sydney, and was a vice-captain of the College and Captain of the Australian Schools Debating Team.

He graduated from the University of Sydney with a Bachelor of Science with first class honours in pure mathematics in 1991.[5] While at university, he was one of the world's top-ranked debaters, reaching the final round of the World Universities Debating Championship three times (1990, 1992, 1996) and winning Worlds Best Speaker (1996).[6] He also won the Australasian debating championship twice (1988, 1990). He was also President of the University of Sydney Union.[7]


He won the Triple J Raw Comedy Championship in 1996.[8]


Adam Spencer has been a host of ABC science shows Quantum, FAQ and Sleek Geeks. In 2005, Spencer hosted Australia's first poker TV show, Joker Poker, on the Ten Network.


From 1999, and joined in 2000 by Wil Anderson, Spencer hosted Triple J's breakfast show, before they both retired from the show in 2004.[10] On 20 February 2006, he began presenting Breakfast on 702 ABC Sydney, replacing Angela Catterns.[11] Spencer previously hosted the "Smile High Club" radio show programme on Qantas Airlines radio channel, Q.

On 6 December 2013, Spencer hosted his last breakfast radio program for ABC 702.[12]


In July 2011 Spencer interviewed climate change sceptic Christopher Monckton. During a heated interview Spencer hung up on Monckton.[13]


In 2014, Spencer published the mathematics book Adam Spencer's Big Book of Numbers ISBN 9781921134869.[14] It focuses on facts, mathematical equations and statistics for each number from one to 100.[15]

Personal life[edit]

On the final day of his breakfast show in 2004, he announced that his partner Mel was pregnant and that the next year he would be leaving his media career to become a full-time dad. He returned within two years to present another breakfast radio show. He married Mel on 28 January 2006.[16] He coaches the University of Sydney second grade women's football team.[17] Since December 2001, he has been a Fellow of the University Senate.[18] He had also served a term from 1992 to 1995. He is a member of the NSW Premier's Advisory Committee on Greenhouse and Global Warming and the NSW Health Department's Clinical Ethics Review Committee.[19]

While Spencer attended St. Aloysius' College and was brought up a Catholic, he describes himself an atheist.[7]


Spencer is an ambassador for The Fred Hollows Foundation[20] and is the national Patron for Dry July.[21]


Main-belt asteroid 18413 Adamspencer has been named after him.[22]


  1. ^ "On air commentary, 29-30/01/13"
  2. ^ "Sydney University Eureka Prize". Retrieved 2013-10-13. 
  3. ^ url=
  4. ^ "Rise and shine – TV & Radio – Entertainment". 20 February 2006. Retrieved 2013-10-13. 
  5. ^ "Of theses and of theatricality". The Australian. 29 August 2007. Retrieved 16 June 2014. 
  6. ^ "History of the World Debating Championships". Retrieved 24 January 2013. 
  7. ^ a b Tim Elliott. "Adam Spencer | the sydney magazine | ABC Radio". Retrieved 2013-10-13. 
  8. ^ "ABC Sleek Geeks bio". 2010-06-22. Retrieved 2013-10-13. 
  9. ^ Adam Spencer Agents Bio Archived 11 April 2013 at the Wayback Machine. 6 April 2009
  10. ^ "Bio". Adam Spencer – The Big Book of Numbers. Adam Spencer. 2015. Retrieved 26 January 2015. 
  11. ^ "Back to breakfast for Spencer – TV & Radio – Entertainment". 2005-11-29. Retrieved 2013-10-13. 
  12. ^ "Adam Spencer's amazing, sings Alex Lloyd on final ABC broadcast". Sydney Morning Herald. 6 December 2013. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 
  13. ^ "Adam Spencer Hangs Up On Lord Monckton During ABC Radio Interview". 2011-07-07. Retrieved 2013-10-13. 
  14. ^ Dumas, Daisy (1 November 2014). "Adam Spencer: Revenge of the nerds". 
  15. ^ "The joys of number-crunching". The Australian. 2014-10-22. Retrieved 2015-01-07. 
  16. ^ "Meet the real Adam Spencer". Sydney Morning Herald. 27 May 2011. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 
  17. ^ "ABC Radio 702's Adam Spencer". In between presenting the 702 Breakfast program every day, Adam fits in about 10–12 hours a week coaching the Sydney University women's soccer team. "I've been coaching the girls for seven years now and absolutely love it," said Adam. The Centre for Volunteering. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 
  18. ^ "Fellows of Senate". Mr Adam Spencer was first a Fellow of Senate elected by and from the postgraduate students of the University of Sydney for 3 years (three terms) from 1 December 1992 to 30 November 1995 and then an elected graduate Fellow for 8 years (two terms) from 1 December 2001 to 30 November 2009. The University of Sydney. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 
  19. ^ "NSW Climate Change Council members' biographies". The NSW Climate Change Council was established by the Minister on 10 March 2008 to provide independent, expert advice on climate change related issues from range of sectors including business, industry, science and research, environment and regional communities. Office of Environment and Heritage. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 
  20. ^ "The Fred Hollows Foundation". The Fred Hollows Foundation. Retrieved 17 June 2016. 
  21. ^ "Supporters". Dry July. Retrieved 2 August 2013. 
  22. ^ Alan Chamberlin. "JPL Small-Body Database Browser: 18413 Adamspencer (1993 LD1)". Retrieved 2013-10-13. 

External links[edit]