Leila McKinnon

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Leila McKinnon
Born (1972-09-28) 28 September 1972 (age 43)
Nationality Australian
Occupation Journalist, television presenter
Spouse(s) David Gyngell (2004–present)
Children 2

Leila McKinnon (born 28 September 1972) is an Iranian-born Anglo-New Zealand journalist who was raised in Australia.

McKinnon was the co-host of Weekend Today and is also a reporter and fill in presenter for Nine News and A Current Affair. She is also a panellist on the NRL Footy Show, and a book reviewer for the Australian Women’s Weekly.


McKinnon began her career reporting part-time for The Sunday Telegraph in Brisbane, while finishing a journalism degree at Queensland University of Technology. In 1993 she accepted a cadetship at WIN Television in Rockhampton, Queensland, before moving to WIN's Cairns bureau. In 1995, she began work with the Nine Network, reporting and presenting for Nine's Nine Gold Coast News.[1]

After three years she became a reporter for A Current Affair in Brisbane. A brief stint on a short-lived consumer affairs programme followed, before she moved to Sydney and returned to the news department, in late 2001.[1] In February 2005, she was appointed news presenter for Today replacing Sharyn Ghidella. She remained news presenter of Today until June when Ghidella was reinstated as news presenter. In August, she returned to present National Nine Morning News presenting the morning bulletin.[citation needed]

In March 2006, she relocated to Los Angeles with her husband, Australian businessman David Gyngell.[2][3]

In 2007, McKinnon returned to Australia, as her husband David Gyngell was reappointed as the CEO of the Nine Network. Since then she has presented the summer edition of A Current Affair. In 2008, she also regularly filled in on Nine News Morning Edition and Nine News Afternoon Edition. In January 2009, it was announced that McKinnon will co-host Weekend Today alongside Cameron Williams, with Amber Sherlock and Michael Slater presenting the news and sport.[citation needed] The program began in early February, and was introduced to counteract Seven's Weekend Sunrise. The show later extended to Saturday mornings as well. She presented the show from Victoria the morning after the Black Saturday, Australia's mostly deadly brushfires. In December 2009, She co-hosted the Sydney New Year's Eve telecast alongside Cameron Williams.[citation needed]

In 2012 McKinnon co-hosted Nine’s award winning coverage of the London Olympic Games and conducted the first live interview with Princes William and Harry. In 2011 and 2012 she wrote a weekly rugby league column for NRL.com. McKinnon is the editor of Australia's Favourite Recipes (2012), a cookbook which raises money for the charity Legacy and features the family recipes of ordinary Australians.[citation needed]

In 2014, McKinnon resigned from Weekend Today to focus on other projects on the Nine Network, she was replaced by Deborah Knight.[citation needed]

Personal life[edit]

McKinnon was born in Iran to an English mother and a New Zealand father, while her father was working as service manager to the late Shah of Iran's fleet of vehicles. She grew up in Brisbane, where she attended MacGregor State High School.[citation needed]

In 2012, McKinnon gave birth to her first child. On the same day her husband got Channel Nine out of a $3 billion debt.[citation needed] McKinnon's second child was born in 2014.


  1. ^ a b "Leila McKinnon". Nine Network. Retrieved 18 February 2010. 
  2. ^ "Gyngell move to LA means Leila goes too". Australasian Business Intelligence. 16 January 2006. 
  3. ^ "Leila's back in town". The Daily Telegraph. 24 December 2006. Retrieved 19 February 2010. 

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Program started
Weekend Today
Co-host with Cameron Williams

February 2009 – June 2014
Succeeded by
Deborah Knight
Preceded by
Kellie Sloane
National Nine News Afternoon Edition

Succeeded by
Wendy Kingston
Preceded by
Sharyn Ghidella
News Presenter

January 2005 – June 2005
Succeeded by
Sharyn Ghidella
Preceded by
Kim Watkins and Andrew G
Sydney New Year's Eve
Co-host with Cameron Williams

Succeeded by
Alicia Gorey and Michael Usher