Alum | Hollie McKay

Hollie McKay: international correspondent reporting from the frontlines of war-torn countries; author; human rights and cultural consultant

Hollie McKay is a graduate of The McDonald College and a national bureau correspondent covering national and international news from Iraq, Afghanistan, Iran, Russia, Turkey, Syria, Pakistan, Yemen, Myanmar, and Ukraine. McKay maintains a permanent press pass to the United Nations and is also an author, a human rights and cultural consultant.

After graduation, McKay studied Communications at UTS before moving to New York to complete her final semester at Pace University.

McKay began her career working as an intern at Fox News. She later moved to LA and produced entertainment news including a TV series called “Hollie on Hollywood”, where she reported on Clint Eastwood and Anthony Bourdain.

Since 2014, McKay has served as Fox’s investigative reporter and foreign correspondent.

She has reported extensively from the battlefields in Iraq, including embedded service with U.S. and Australian forces.

During her investigative reporting in Iraq, McKay uncovered mass sex slavery perpetrated by ISIS. McKay documented dozens of first-hand survivors’ and witnesses’ accounts to be used in later tribunals and court cases in Iraq.

In 2017, McKay reported extensively from Kabul, Afghanistan, the Panjshir Valley, and other areas of the country. She interviewed a wide range of Afghan government officials, members of the Afghan National Security Forces, and others, including Afghanistan’s Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah, former President Hamid Karzai, former Vice President Ahmad Zia Massoud, and Vice President Abdul Rashid Dostum (McKay interviewed Dostum while he was in temporary exile in Turkey).

In Afghanistan, McKay investigated and reported on numerous subjects, including the status of women and Women’s rights in Afghanistan, Taliban attacks on Afghan forces, and how terrorists enter Afghanistan.

She met with Pakistani Ambassador Khalid Mahmood in a 2018 discussion about counter-terrorism in Afghanistan and Pakistan. She has reported on issues related to the Kashmir conflict.

She was also an advisor for creating Call of Duty: Modern Warfare. In that role, McKay crafted story ideas and features for their behind-the-scenes global promotional materials. McKay was featured in the 2019 documentary about the game’s authentic recreation of actual battle conditions.

McKay serves on the Honorary and Advisory Board of the humanitarian NGO Emergency USA, which supports healthcare to victims of war, poverty and landmines in Afghanistan, Eritrea, Iraq, Italy, Sierra Leone, Sudan and Uganda.

McKay is the author of several books. In 2023, McKay released Afghanistan: The End of the US Footprint and the Rise of the Taliban Rule. In 2021, McKay published Only Cry for the Living, a historical work that chronicles the human stories she encountered while covering the war with ISIS between 2014 and 2019. In 2000 she published a novel entitled Sworn to Secrecy.

“I am always more interested in the human side of conflict rather than tactics and techniques. The soldier who brings you tea and bread and pillows. The one who shows you photos of their child and then asks what will become of their future. The one who plays classical music before the incoming. The camaraderie that exists.”