03 9557 2016


“Mary-Anne Waldren has taken upon herself the nurturing of Canberra's soul. The important thing, she says, is creating the depth of culture that will make our city stimulating enough for the nation's most advanced minds to want to stay."

- The City News

Mary-Anne loves developing one-off cause-related campaigns and is masterful at uniting people and partnerships in working towards a common goal. She can help you develop a campaign that is right for your organisation. Click here to contact her.


Radio National Broadcasts

Mary-Anne joined forces with Radio National almost two decades ago to stage and broadcast themed events.

She researches and suggests engaging and topical events and panellists, brokers partnerships to fund forums and markets the events to fill venues.

Event supporters receive unparalleled promotion and awareness for their business products, awards or areas of expertise.

The ABC’s charter means editorial control of events rests with it. Despite this, Mary-Anne is skilled at delivering topics and panellists that suit both ABC and sponsors’ agendas.

ABC presenters she has worked with include Geraldine Doogue, Maxine McKew, Phillip Adam, Robyn Williams, Norman Swan, Bernie Hobbs, Paul Willis, Richard Aedy, Rachael Kohn, Alan Saunders, Julie McCrossin, Sandy McCutcheon, Paul Barclay and Natasha Mitchell.

 " Australian troops are coming back from Afghanistan in early 2014 so Mary-Anne Waldren has been working with Beyond Blue and Paul Barclay from ABC Big Ideas radio and Television to present "Boys Don't Cry".  This program is being recorded on Thursday 21 November at the Australian War Memorial.  All are welcome to attend.  It will go to air in the summer. See link

The Making of Civic

Mary Anne Waldren produced a program for the Master Builders Association, ACT on the rejuvenation of Civic. The two hour uncut version of the program is here. It will be made into a 50 minute ABC Radio National Big Ideas program presented by Paul Barclay soon. Many of Canberra city’s most significant developers, business and thought leaders came along and had their say. The discussion was robust, considered and engaging. Many agreed that Civic needs some guidance, perhaps a curator. 

Charles Landry: Canberra’s critical friend

Mary-Anne Waldren changed the face of Canberra by co-opting the partners and the finance to make it possible to feed Charles Landry into the political and planning processes

Canberra’s media dubbed Landry “the city whisperer” when Mary-Anne first brought him to Canberra in 2004. The ACT Government implemented 9 out 10 of his recommendations after this visit, despite the fact that they had not commissioned his report. Mary-Anne had because she is passionate about Canberra’s future.

Mary-Anne is continuing her work with Landry to help create a creative bureaucracy for the city and is helping to generate event sponsorship to make it happen.

  • Click here to download the Leading Canberra report.
  • Click here to download the Youth Leadership Group report.
  • Click here to download The Collaborative Imperative a report prepared by Charles Landry following in April 2014 visit.


National Arboretum Canberra

Four people died, 100 people were injured and 500 homes destroyed in Canberra’s 2003 bushfires.

The National Arboretum Canberra was conceived to rise from the ashes of this tragedy and complete a grand vision for Canberra, almost a century after it was conceived. Canberra’s designers originally envisaged a vast international arboretum at the heart of Canberra.

Mary-Anne applied her event-sponsorship and marketing nous to this project to produce an eight-minute promotional video, six hours of historical interviews on film, a marketing brochure and an event involving creative planning pioneer Charles Landry. All of this helped generate sponsorship for the arboretum.


Festival focus

"Another fantastic festival for Executive Director of the Australian Science Festival Mary-Anne Waldren. It just gets better with age." 
– The Canberra Times 

Mary-Anne Waldren is internationally known as the driving force behind three festivals. She ran the multi-award-winning Australian Science Festival for 18 years, kick-started National Science Week, a festival that has been copied around the world, and created Canberra’s first innovation festival, ICAN.

She brought to Canberra and toured around Australia luminaries ranging from Sir David Bellamy, IVF pioneer Lord Robert Winston, Time magazine’s first Hero of the Planet marine biologist Dr Sylvia Earle and three NASA astronauts to vacuum cleaner baron James Dyson, the man who coined the term “lateral thinking” Edward DeBono, and scores of others.

The Australian Science Festival consistently generated more than a million dollars in media coverage each year and more than 80 per cent awareness, under Mary-Anne’s direction.

She provided a career springboard for 63 professional science communicators, many of whom are in key positions around the world.

Mary-Anne mentored executives throughout the world on how they can establish science festivals, in counties ranging from Austria to Korea.