Sustainability Champion Award

Celebrates people who fly the sustainability flag by helping others to make changes.

This award recognises people who’ve been instrumental in delivering environmental projects. They need to have demonstrated leadership in influencing and changing community or organisation views on sustainability and/or guiding change in sustainable practices.

Open to individuals who are 31 years or older, living in NSW. Individuals can be nominated by a third party or self-nominate.

2018 Green Globe Award joint winners

Ed Maher: Charles Sturt University

Ed MaherAs the Green Manager at Charles Sturt University, Ed Maher leads a team of five sustainability professionals and six student advisers, guiding students and staff to act sustainably at work, home and in their future careers.

His tireless campaigning is bringing positive, measurable change to the university’s sustainability record – enhanced, he believes, by his adherence to the CSU’s values of being insightful, inclusive, impactful and inspiring.

Based in Wagga Wagga, Ed is now inspiring campuses across Australia.

Major achievements include leading the CSU to be the first university to be certified carbon neutral. His War On Waste campaign resulted in more than half of coffees being sold in reusable cups in the nine campus cafes – and has been rolled out to cafes in regional areas. He has also led the university to set aside land for conservation and convert to solar power. In 2017 CSU Wagga installed one of Australia’s largest roof top solar systems.

His ongoing commitment to sustainability, his leadership, innovation and attention to detail is a true inspiration and a brilliant example of what can be achieved.

Jackie Ruddock: The Social Outfit

Jackie RuddockJackie Ruddock, CEO and founder of fashion manufacturer The Social Outfit, is a pioneer in ethical fashion in Australia. Her business celebrates multicultural Sydney, employing refugee and new migrant women and nourishing their talents and creativity.

Jackie’s leadership has built a viable business while embracing positive social impacts. It’s a model which is scalable and replicable within the fashion industry. She is setting an example that could positively influence more established brands.

The Social Outfit provides training and employment to new migrant groups, often helping these women with English, and with skills to take to other employment opportunities. There is an emphasis on holistic sustainability, working with established brands to take up usable by-products of their operations diverting waste from landfill, and using natural fibres where possible.

Positive social impacts can be seen through employment of 18 people from the refugee and new migrant community, 30 young people from greater western Sydney participating in creative design projects and training more than 194 people from the refugee and new migrant community in specialist sewing programs.

Alongside all this, Jackie produces quality garments that people want to buy and wear.

Finalists

Rob James: Direct Group Industries

Rob JamesRob James lives for recycling.

His father Mick was in the business in the 60s – and Rob claims he can’t remember a time when he wasn’t in and around recycling.

Rob set up his own company 25 years ago at the age of 23. His focus was on metals and then timber pallets, but there was no way back then that he envisioned being the owner of NSW’s only fully integrated and sustainable wood pallet reuse and timber recycling facility, Direct Group Industries.

Good pallets and wood are reused, and non-reusable wood is recycled. He is now a major supplier of recycled timber products including poultry and horse bedding, along with renewable energy fuels, spray grass base and freeway and estate gardens mulch.

Rob is your classic Australian innovator come good. His ability to adapt, innovate and move into new industries using old materials is good old-fashioned Australian ingenuity at its best.

He brings a pragmatic, commercial and collaborative approach to sustainability, and now employs over 20 people.

Rob continues to build his company at Ingleburn, Direct Group Industries has diverted over 35,000 tonnes of material including waste wood, pallets and metal from landfill, saving money and resources.

Dr Tein McDonald: Australian Association of Bush Regenerators

Dr Tien McDonaldFor over four decades Dr Tein McDonald has devoted an extraordinary amount of her time, energy and expertise to repairing degraded natural environments.

It was back in the 80s when she first joined the Australian Association of Bush Regenerators, one of the most active ecological restoration organisations in Australia, and instigated the first annual Korinderie Bush Regeneration Week 15 years ago. She continued to champion ecosystem repair, being one of the first people to be awarded a PhD in bush regeneration.

Many approaches to restoring have emerged over the decades, Tein has been a catalyst in bringing together a diverse range of philosophies to ecological restoration, to encourage a more unified approach. She has embraced indigenous management of ecosystems with projects such as working with the local Bandjalang people to help manage their land and conserve their language and culture.

In 2015 she contributed to the National Standards for the Practice of Ecological Restoration in Australia for the Society for Ecological Restoration Australasia (SER Australia) which was later adapted by the International body of SER.

Her passion is the key – she is a true champion of ecological restoration and improved biodiversity, with a unique ability to engage and motivate action from government and industry bodies through to individuals.

Romilly Madew: Green Building Council of Australia

Romilly MadewThe Green Building Council of Australia leads the way in creating sustainable buildings in Australia.

At the helm is Romilly Madew, a woman who is firmly committed to working collaboratively across government and industry to deliver healthier, more productive, sustainable and resilient places for people.

For more than a decade, she has led the Green Building Council, and she performs a number of board roles and community responsibilities, including board member of the World Green Building Council.

Romilly was awarded the 2017 World Green Building Council Chairman’s Award, the 2015 International Leadership Award by the US Green Building Council and was made an Honorary Fellow by the Planning Institute of Australia the same year. She has previously been named one of the 100 Women of Influence by the Australian Financial Review and Westpac, and a National and NSW winner of the Telstra Business Women’s Awards.

Romilly is passionate about creating sustainable buildings, communities and cities and continues to make an amazing difference across NSW and Australia to the impact the indoors has upon the outdoors and the people who live in both.