Fearless five assemble

– by Leanne Esposito
“Survival depends more on  adaptability to change than strength and intelligence than strength and intelligence.”
In the midst of a global evolutionary and  economic crisis, sage words from the late father  of evolution, Charles Darwin are ringing true for five fabulous women as they tackle the  challenge of launching a new lifestyle magazine,  specifically designed for the people of the Fraser  Coast.
However, this is not the first rodeo for these seasoned professionals. Words and pictures,  newspapers and magazines – the glossier the  better – have been a part of their world for  decades. Keeping readers entertained, and up to date with stories and pictures was, and is, their daily gig.
They love hitting publishing deadlines  with entertaining content, but for some, their  day-job end came surprisingly quickly.After years dedicating their working lives to  the local newspaper and specialist magazines, overnight, it seemed, a decision was reached  by the overlords.An announcement was made  by the multinational organisation which had  taken-over their beloved print media site back in  2016. They were no longer needed – along with  some 600 journalists, designers and support  staff across Australia.

Print media was dead.  Local newspapers were going online!  “It’s a tactile thing. I enjoy sitting back and  luxuriating with a couple of newspapers and a  cup of coffee in the morning.”  Ironically this is a quote taken from a recent ABC interview with Chris Jones, editor of the Courier Mail, which is today still in print. However,  this luxuriating was to no longer be an option  for regional folks.

They were to be ignored,  overlooked and relegated as second class  citizens.  How dare they came the collective cry from a  host of country cousins as indignation rose up  from within the ranks and reverberated across  the nation, followed by a host of questions.

News is news, but who would tell our stories, the  stories about the people and places that make  up who we are on the Fraser Coast?

Stories  about the unique, the passionate, the diverse,  the quick and the quirky. There is no doubt that  storytelling has been important for centuries  in keeping cultures alive. And that’s what the  fabulous five recognised, do so very well, and  wanted to continue. It is said that necessity is the mother of invention.

So when you and your amazing and talented colleagues, who’ve been hitting impossible  deadlines, across multiple publications, and  smashing KPIs forever are now free from the  shackles of the multi-national – you strike!

Founder of Alive Magazine Joy Butler was quick  to gather her troops. Within days she had it  sorted. However, there were prudent questions  as to the economic viability of a free magazine  in the current climate. Those questions became redundant and were swiftly converted to a  magazine launch date. An overwhelming tide  of community support has seen the pages filled from cover to cover with contributors and  advertisers ready to ride the waves with them.

Adapting to their new and independent  normal the team continues to labour tirelessly  in crafting a magazine of which they, and the  people of the Fraser Coast, can be immensely proud.

As women, dealing with competing  issues and undertaking multiple tasks, to them,  it’s second nature. And to highlight how they do  it, more words from the father of evolution.

“A (wo)man who dares to  waste one hour of time  has not discovered the  value of life.”

As a self-confessed workaholic, Joy Butler  doesn’t, and will not waste a precious moment  in time, and that is why we are Alive!


Joy Butler, comes from a creative and artistic  family and has been drawing since she could  hold a pencil. During the 2nd year of graphic  design degree she was hired as a web designer.

After moving to Australia, marrying and having children, photography became her passion.

Working at the newspaper, as well as running  photography and photobooth businesses, Joy is  a superwoman.

Lizzie Macaulay worked in varied roles  including, hospitality and personal training,  but after stint in HR for the Scottish Football Association she met her husband Andy (and no he’s not a footballer, he’s a dentist) she returned to Australia.

After completing tertiary education and working as a features writer for the  Chronicle she knew she’d found her calling.

This is where Lizzie and Joy brainstormed and kickedoff,  what was, the successful Fraser Coast Life  & Style magazine. Today she is an incredible  content developer with her own business Write It!

Leanne Esposito is a paralegal of some forty  years and restauranteur.

Words and written  documents have been a huge part of her work-life but she always hankered to write that novel. After  completing a master’s degree in creative writing she joined the Chronicle team as a features writer.

She has a passion for crafting  personal stories to mini novellas.

Kerrie Alexander was and will always be the  darling of our local newspapers. A year out of school she started as an editorial secretary with the Hervey Bay Observer where she quickly progressed as a cadet journalist for  the Chronicle.

Highlights of her career include  the award-winning, Let’s Learn Butchulla series, editor of the Observer and Hervey Bay Independent. She juggles her passion for writing community stories with caring for her son and running a locksmith business with her husband Shaun.

Louise Holmes acknowledges that her  family has always come first, with four grown  daughters and hubby to care for, and still she  works non-stop. Her tenure with newspapers  started with APN, the Taupo Weekender and  the Taupo Times.

From area sales to features  and sales manager she’s sold and done a ton!  Running a small business while marketing the  New Zealand Ladies Amateur Golf National  Tournament was a breeze.