This award recognises people who have been instrumental in delivering successful environmental projects. They demonstrate leadership in influencing and changing community or organisation views on sustainability and/or guiding change in sustainable practices.
Open to individuals born on or before 30 June 1989, living in New South Wales.
Fashion may be the world’s most wasteful industry. Of the 80 billion garments produced annually, a third are never sold, while 6 tonnes of clothing are added to Australian landfill every 10 minutes. With her influential Wardrobe Crisis podcast, articles, books and social media presence, Clare Press has kickstarted the sustainable fashion movement by focusing on solutions to curb waste, over-consumption and environmentally damaging practices in Australia and internationally. In 2018, Vogue magazine appointed her as its first-ever sustainability editor.
April Crawford-Smith: Pingala and The Valley Centre
April Crawford-Smith’s mission to create a fairer energy system has had outstanding results. In 2013, she helped to found the Pingala organisation, enabling communities to finance, own and operate their own solar power projects. Working with the Valley Centre, she spearheaded the Indigenous Solar Rolling Fund (ISRF), providing interest-free loans to help communities achieve energy self-sufficiency with solar power. The ISRF is one of the largest community-based movements in Australia, dramatically improving energy affordability, creating job opportunities and lowering emissions.
Diane Duffy: St George Girls High School
As Team Leader Sustainability at St George Girls High School, science teacher Diane Duffy, mentors students and staff to make a meaningful environmental impact. As well as overseeing the recycling, gardening and Clean Up teams, she organises the school’s annual Green Day, supporting student initiatives and liaising with external suppliers to facilitate workshops. She leads yearly Environmental Conservation field trips to Norfolk Island where students assist in weed control and native habitat restoration. Most impressively, she does all of this in her own time.
Sara Rickards: Futuregiving
Sara Rickards is a former academic who uses her science and engineering background to tackle environmental challenges with innovative solutions. She was responsible for embedding sustainability in every degree program at Macquarie University, is an ambassador for Plastic Free Manly, and through her consultancy, Futuregiving, offers sustainability coaching and workshops, and collaborates with organisations to help them meet zero waste targets. She donates 50% of her time to pro bono projects that take action on climate change.