Featured Profile: Nene King

Lana Wilson / June 06, 2013 01:01 PM

Who’s Who of Australian Women, Who's Who in Australia and Who's Who in Business entrant and former Editor of Woman’s Day, Nene King, is without a doubt, a legend that thrived under the helm of media mogul Kerry Packer.

Nene King

Photo: Sydney Morning Herald

King started her career in 1979 as a Writer at established woman’s magazine New Idea. After a promotion to the role of News Editor, King was then made the glowing magazine’s Deputy Editor, reporting to New Idea’s head, Dulcie Boling.

Prior to her much publicised resignation in 1987, King and Boling’s dynamic working relationship helped New Idea to lead the charge as one of the top woman’s magazines in the country. Outside of their work, Boling and King were believed to have differing personalities, with Boling considered calm and collected, and King, flamboyant and fiery.    

In 1988, Nene King became the Editor of Packer’s newly created magazine, Woman’s Day, and sought to beat competition from other magazines on the newsstand by targeting a feminine, youthful and hardworking female demographic.

While ‘Paper Giants: Magazine Wars’ highlights the sheer competition between King and her former boss Boling, reports from the time indicate that King was hungry to succeed and for her publication to do well – two goals of which she achieved by publishing stories on topics that generated large readerships, such as the Royal Family, popular celebrities and real life stories from ordinary readers.

Woman’s Day generated millions of dollars in profit every year for Kerry Packer, as did arch rival New Idea for its owner Rupert Murdoch.

After moving up a notch from Editor to Editor-In-Chief of Woman’s Day between 1992 and 1994, King moved on to oversee several of Packer’s publications in the role of Editorial Director for ACP Magazines – then known as Australian Consolidated Press.

In 1991, Nene King was named Ad News’ Media Executive of the Year.

While King’s driven work ethic and fiery attitude has provided her with much success, the glossy magazine queen has also endured many public personal battles, including the death of her husband Patrick Bowring, accounts of drug and alcohol addiction and a period of breakdown.

Today, King is still involved with the Woman’s Day publication and writes a weekly ‘Agony Aunt’ column, in addition to maintaining a media profile as a public speaker.

Sources: Who’s Who, The Age, Good Weekend

You can read more on the biography of Nene King as well as thousands of other prominent Australians in Who’s Who Live. Find out more here.

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