Jessica Rowe

Jessica Rowe
Jessica Rowe
Born Jessica Rowe
1971 (age 39–40)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Residence Sydney, Australia
Occupation Seven News & Weekend Sunrise presenter
Employer Seven Network
Known for Ten News (1996 – 2005)
Today (2006)
Seven News (2007 – present)
Weekend Sunrise (2010 – present)
Spouse Peter Overton
Children Allegra Penelope Overton (born 18 January 2007 (2007-01-18) (age 4))
Giselle Charlotte Overton (born 9 April 2009 (2009-04-09) (age 2))
Jessica Rowe

Jessica Rowe (born 1971) is an Australian television news presenter. Rowe attended Sydney Girls High School[1] in Sydney, and completed a Communications degree at Charles Sturt University in Bathurst. During her studies she was a broadcaster with on-campus community radio station 2MCE-FM. In April 2011, Jessica appeared as the Narrator in Side By Side By Sondheim at the Seymour Centre in Sydney.



Early career

At 22 years old, Jessica started her career at Channel Nine as a receptionist for Nine's Wide World of Sports. She made her on-air debut as a weather presenter on Prime Television in Canberra. She was later spotted by Network Ten executives, and was made a main news presenter. She presented Ten Sydney's flagship Ten News at Five bulletin with Ron Wilson for almost 10 years, from 1996 until the end of 2005.


In 2005 Rowe signed a contract valued at $500,000 to host the Nine Network's Today, which she briefly co-hosted with Karl Stefanovic from late January until early December 2006. Ten took Rowe to court over her defection, claiming that a clause in their contract with Rowe prevented her from starting at Nine until June 2006. The case was dismissed on 30 December 2005, allowing Rowe to debut on the show 30 January 2006.

Rowe's early tenure with the Nine Network's Today was disastrous. There was public criticism of her presentation style on this breakfast television show, a style which was perceived by many as "annoying".[2] Additionally, Rowe was embarrassed on 30 May 2006 by a gaffe in which Australian Brigadier Michael Slater revealed during a live cross that the interview from Dili, East Timor was being stage managed.[3][4] Nine Network CEO Eddie McGuire made a public statement in June 2006 falsely stating the claims Rowe was to be "sacked" were part of a "a malicious and unprecedented vilification campaign"[5] This followed the sworn evidence in an affidavit from Nine's former head of news Mark Llewellyn that McGuire had threatened to "bone" Jessica Rowe during a meeting with executives[6] On 26 July 2006, she fell down six stairs at her Sydney home and suffered a broken wrist, but her unborn baby was uninjured.[7] She went back to work on Today on the following Monday.[8]

On 6 May 2007, it was announced that Rowe had left the Nine Network due to "payment disputes".[9]

Seven Network

The Sydney Morning Herald had reported on 23 July that Rowe would return to television as a news presenter for Seven News. She was also a contestant in the seventh series of Dancing with the Stars.[10]

Jessica began her presenting duties on 17 December 2007 with the national Seven 4.30 News news bulletin. In January 2008, Rowe presented Seven Morning News while Ann Sanders was on leave and she also filled in for Natalie Barr on Sunrise.

From February 2008, Rowe began a stint as a panelist on a new late night show on Seven's high definition channel (7HD) called The NightCap.[11] This proved to be a further career failure for Rowe. The show has since stopped production due to no generation of revenue for Seven

On 15 December 2008, News Limited reported that Rowe's contract with the Seven Network had not been renewed. The head of the network, David Leckie, confirmed that her contract had ended and that Seven was unable to offer her a permanent news presenter position, although he said that casual news presenting shifts may become available for her.[12]

In December 2010, Rowe began presenting the news on Weekend Sunrise replacing Sarah Cumming and Sharyn Ghidella.

Personal life

Rowe is married to Australian television journalist and Nine News and 60 Minutes presenter Peter Overton.

On 21 July 2006, Jessica Rowe announced on Today that she was 3½ months pregnant. Further, in an interview with the Australian Women's Weekly of 22 August 2006, she said that her baby was due on 22 January 2007. The baby was conceived after four IVF attempts.[13] She began maternity leave from Today on 8 December 2006. Sarah Murdoch was her temporary replacement, however presented the show longer than originally intended.[14] Kellie Connolly replaced Murdoch, and was eventually replaced by Lisa Wilkinson.

Rowe gave birth to daughter Allegra Penelope Overton on 18 January 2007, four days ahead of the due date. She later admitted that she had suffered from post-natal depression during Allegra's early months, in the hope of helping other mothers in the same situation.[15]

In October 2008, Rowe announced that she was 14 weeks pregnant with her second child and that it has been conceived naturally. On 9 April 2009, Rowe gave birth to daughter Giselle Charlotte Overton, Peter Overton announced the news on 10 April.

She is a fan of the Sydney Roosters Rugby League Team.


  1. ^ "Distinguished Old Girls". The History of Sydney Girls High School. Sydney Girls High School. Retrieved 25 May 2008. 
  2. ^ "Jessica's annoying Laugh". The Australian. 11 June 2006.,20867,19427753-1702,00.html. 
  3. ^ "Brigadier tells it like it is". The Age. 31 May 2006. Retrieved 16 December 2006. 
  4. ^ "Brigadier catches Nine off guard". SMH. 30 May 2006. Retrieved 16 December 2006. 
  5. ^ "McGuire forced to back star". The Australian. 29 June 2006.,10117,19625251-2,00.html. [dead link]
  6. ^ "McGuire hits back". SMH. 2 July 2006. Retrieved 16 December 2006. 
  7. ^ "Rowe breaks wrist in fall". The Age. 27 July 2006. 
  8. ^ "Rowe back with a smile". News Limited. 31 July 2006.,10117,19966863-421,00.html. [dead link]
  9. ^ "Rowe quits Today over pay". The Sunday Telegraph. 6 May 2007.,23663,21679187-10229,00.html. 
  10. ^ Rowe lands Seven gig after postnatal depression - The Sydney Morning Herald, 23 July 2007
  11. ^ Jessica Rowe's new late show - The Daily Telegraph, 30 Jan 2008
  12. ^ Jessica Rowe dumped by Channel Seven: report, The Age, 15 December 2008.
  13. ^ "A Rowe of hurdles". The Daily Telegraph. 22 August 2006.,23663,20210101-10388,00.html. [dead link]
  14. ^ "Murdoch takes summer job in the Packer camp". The Australian. 11 November 2006.,20876,20737973-2702,00.html. Retrieved 16 December 2006. 
  15. ^ Jessica's honesty over baby blues, The Age, 8 December 2008.

External links

Media offices
Preceded by
Juanita Phillips
Ten News at Five Sydney
Presenter with Ron Wilson

1996 – 2005
Succeeded by
Deborah Knight
Preceded by
Tracy Grimshaw
Co-host with Karl Stefanovic

30 January 2006 – 8 December 2006
Succeeded by
Lisa Wilkinson
Preceded by
Sarah Cumming & Sharyn Ghidella
Weekend Sunrise
News Presenter

December 2010 –
Succeeded by

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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