Shanna Whan is an experienced MC, panellist, and keynote speaker who has contributed to a vast selection of podcasts, television programs, panels, radio, and national and international media over the years.

She was awarded the Australian of the Year (Local Hero) award in 2022 and the Marie Claire Advocate of the Year award the same year. She’s been blessed to travel upon invitation from one end of Australia to the other and has spoken in dusty paddocks, on stations and at conferences, and has swapped boots for heels at the Opera House and when representing Australia at the funeral of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II.

Shanna easily adapts her style, message, and tone to suit any audience she meets. Contrary to what many assume, she’s totally at ease presenting in front of audiences where alcohol is served. Shanna will instantly put her audience at ease with her raw honesty and infectious sense of humour.

Over the past decade, Shanna fearlessly and publicly began this (now national) conversation by sharing her own story of ‘almost dying from alcohol harm in plain sight of her rural community’. Over the years, she has transitioned into sharing the wider perspectives, learnings and insights she’s gained from her invaluable advocacy and work in this space. Shanna now speaks with authority on behalf of the countless rural Australians who’ve shared their own truths and challenges with Sober in the Country.

Shanna leads her keynotes and talks (and even runs Sober in the Country) with a supremely relatable, warm approach that’s all about mateship, mental health and inclusion. At every step, Shanna is working to create a better rural culture where we cater for and accept all our mates, no matter the drink in their hand. With Shanna, you won’t find a prohibitionist anti-alcohol stance: instead, she’ll share an honest insight into the truth of alcohol harm for some of our friends. She will share her charity’s #OK2SAYNO message, which is being adopted nationally to give rural Australians ‘permission’ to change the narrative around booze in the bush.  In her trademark inspirational, relatable style, Shanna will lay out the simple ways we can all be part of this much-needed collective change.

Shanna’s insights and expertise as keynote speaker added tremendous value to our conference. Her ability to engage the audience and deliver thought-provoking content really resonated with the audience. We received overwhelmingly positive feedback from attendees who were inspired by Shanna’s passion, knowledge, and commitment to advancing mental health in rural and remote communities.

Corinne McGowan & Kate Chetwin, Conference Coordinators, WA Rural & Mental Health Conference, 2023

Shanna’s Awards

Winner – Australian of the Year, Local Hero, 2022

Winner – Marie Claire Advocate of the Year, 2022

Winner – ProBono Australia's “Top 25” Impact Awards, 2021

Nominee – Australian of the Year, Local Hero, 2021

Finalist – Regional Woman of the Year, 2020

Finalist – SHINE Volunteer of the Year, 2018

Finalist – AgriFutures Rural Woman of the Year, 2017

Want to book Shanna as keynote speaker, panellist or MC at your event?

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    Shanna speaking all around Australia