Lee Lin Chin’s farewell: How she became an Australian icon


Lee Lin Chin announced her surprise departure from SBS last week, shocking thousands of Australians who grew up watching her read the news almost every weekend for more than 25 years. Lee Lin announced her departure on Network 10 during an interview with Sandra Sully, when asked about the motive behind her departure she simply put:

“…Working two days a week didn’t give me enough time to devote to the pub and re-reading the complete works of Shakespeare. So now that I work zero days that issue has been addressed.”

Lee Lin Chin was iconic. I remember when I was younger, my family and I would huddle around the television screen on weekends, waiting for the SBS world news. We would often go into in-depth discussion following the broadcast, which contributed heavily to my desire to be a journalist. This narrative perhaps rings similar to a lot of other Australians.

Here are some reasons Lee Lin Chin is an Australian icon

She was phenomenal at her job

Lee Lin was an articulate and a naturally engaging presenter. Lee Lin worked for many years in radio and television, in both Singapore and Australia before landing the coveted anchor position for weekend news on SBS. Her eloquent oration will be dearly missed on our screens.

A different type of anchor

Lee Lin began broadcasting in 1992, a time where diversity in Australian news media was rare. Commercial media often sought after presenters who reflected the current majority demographic, Anglo-Australian. SBS presented a completely different landscape in broadcast, their content was more progressive, and their news presenter was evidence of that. Lee Lin was one of the pioneers in diversifying Australian news broadcasting, which would’ve proved a gamble for the network and an enormous amount of pressure for Lee Lin. Of course, it was a matter of time before she would be embraced by many Australians.


Fun fact: If you search Lee Lin Chin’s wikipedia page fashionista is listed as her occupation, and to no surprise. A part of Lee Lin’s appeal was her fashion. Every weekend she would select some of the most eccentric garments, much to Australia’s delight. In fact, her fashion became such a talking point that SBS produced a satirical segment where Lee Lin would graciously offer the public fashion advice.

A living breathing internet meme – and she knows it

Lee Lin’s sense of humour is evident through her social media accounts. If you’re not following her on twitter I suggest you do so, she will not disappoint. Lee Lin posts an array of pictures, and captions which hilariously point out life’s most trivial things. She often pokes fun at herself and fellow colleagues, as well as occasionally calling out a fan for incorrectly describing her in a tweet. A facebook page dedicated to Lee Lin’s fashion with a following of 50,000 people is also worth noting.

In conclusion although Lee Lin Chin has resigned from SBS, she will forever live in our hearts and homes.




Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here