Ramona Koval (born 1954, Melbourne) is an Australian broadcaster, writer and journalist.

Her parents were Yiddish-speaking survivors of The Holocaust who arrived in Melbourne from Poland in 1950.

Koval is known for her extended and in-depth interviews with significant writers. She has had a long and varied career on-air in Australia on Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Radio. She was the presenter of the Radio National Drive program and the morning presenter on Melbourne's 3LO (now 774 ABC Melbourne) through the late 1980s and early 1990s and became a fixture in the literary world after joining Radio National's Books and Writing in 1994. Koval presented The Book Show,[1] introduced by Radio National in 2006 to consolidate its various book programs. The Book Show was the world's only daily radio program devoted to books, writing, and publishing.

She left the ABC in October 2011 to pursue her own writing, and has since published three books of non-fiction, several essays and a range of journalism.

She has been an Honorary Fellow at the Centre for Advancing Journalism, the University of Melbourne since January 2015.


Koval has written books, journalism for many newspapers and international journals, and her interviews have been published in book form. Her collection of international literary interviews is Speaking Volumes: Conversations with remarkable writers, Scribe, 2010.

Koval has traveled extensively and documented conversations with some of the most exciting and respected authors writing in English, and she has made several radio documentaries. She is an active participant in the various Australian literary festivals, and has been invited to take part in international Literary festivals – including the Edinburgh International Book Festival, Montreal's Blue Metropolis literary festival, the UK's Cheltenham Literature Festival.

In 1995 Koval won the Order of Australia Media Award for a series of radio programs entitled "Writing from the Centre" and broadcast on ABC Radio National.

Koval has served on the board of the Australian Book Review, and has served on the Victorian Premier's Literary Award Advisory Committee, and the Asialink Awards Literary Committee. She has judged the radio section of the Walkley Awards twice, and been a judge of non-fiction for the Victorian Premier's Literary Awards twice, once as chair of the committee.

In 2002 Koval was elected to the position of staff-elected Director on the ABC Board. She held this position during a period of intense controversy, until the position was abolished in 2006 following an amendment to the ABC Act by the Howard Government.

In 2008 she was invited to be one of 1000 people taking part in the Australia 2020 Summit to "help shape a long term strategy for the nation's future".[2]

In 2015 she was appointed Honorary Fellow at the Centre for Advancing Journalism, University of Melbourne.

She is the mother of two daughters, Emma Kowal and Sara Kowal, and the grandmother of five granddaughters and a grandson.


This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (September 2018)



  1. ^ "The Book Show". Australian Broadcasting Corporation. Retrieved 27 March 2008.
  2. ^ Australia 2020, about the summit. Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet
  3. ^ Interview originally broadcast on 'Books and Writing', ABC Radio National.