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Janet Mackenzie Medal launched

Posted on: 25 May 2019

The Institute of Professional Editors (IPEd) launched the Janet Mackenzie Medal (the Mackenzie) at its 9th National Editors Conference in Melbourne on 10 May. It honours Janet Mackenzie, who died in 2018. Present at the launch were Janet’s children, Sam and Rosie Mackenzie.

The Mackenzie is IPEd’s highest award, to be conferred on an outstanding professional editor who has lifted the standard of the editing profession and/or given exemplary service to IPEd.

In noting Janet’s achievements, IPEd Chair and award founder Kerry Davies AE said, ‘The most difficult part of developing the criteria for this award was being careful that they honoured Janet while still being achievable for others.’

Janet was a founding member of Editors Victoria, nearly 50 years ago, and remained active in Victorian and national editing initiatives. In 1993, she was part of the first push for a national organisation. Janet was on the first working group to write and publish Australian Standards for Editing Practice, 1998 to 2001, and worked on the revisions for the second edition in 2012. She wrote The Editor’s Companion, a classic and highly readable Australian editing text, published by Cambridge University Press.

Janet won the Barbara Ramsden Award from the Fellowship of Australian Writers in 1972, was given Honorary Life Membership of Editors Victoria in 1996 and received the George Robertson Award from the Australian Publishers Association in 2010.

She was one of the Distinguished Editors nominated to develop, write and mark the first accreditation exam in 2008. Until just weeks before her death, she was also part of the Style Manual Steering Group, formed in 2015, to push for the seventh edition.

The Mackenzie will take the form of a medal to be awarded annually. Recipients will also receive Honorary Life Membership of IPEd and will be able to use an electronic rendering of the medal in their editing business branding. Detailed criteria and a nomination template are available from the Awards page. The inaugural Mackenzie requires nominations to be submitted by October 2019 and will be awarded in 2020.

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