On Thursday 15th June 2017 we were invited to the launch of the 2nd annual Australian LGBTI awards. Bloomberg, one of the awards top sponsors, did the honours of hosting the event on their sky terrace on the 27th floor of their offices at one Bligh Street.
Guests were greeted with drinks on arrival and enjoyed the impressive views of the city. A delicious buffet style lunch was provided and included: sushi & nigiri (with wasabi, ginger soy, yuzu and togarashi), chinese vegetarian fried rice, and southern fried chicken.
The director of the Australian LGBTI Awards, Silke Bader, explains why the awards are so important by saying “as a whole the LGBTI community spend a lot of time fighting for equality, it’s nice to be able to take some time out to come together to celebrate one another, and this is what the Australian LGBTI Awards is all about.”
James Breko Brechney was the emcee for the event and did a great job of keeping the audience entertained and the energy up for the duration. Peter FitzSimons hosted the lively panel discussion that took place with three winners from the 2017 awards: Michelle Heyman (sports personality), Sharon Carroll (inspirational role model 2017) and Julie McCrossin (broadcaster and presenter of the year).
Michelle Heyman was the only openly gay athlete to represent Australia at the 2016 Rio Olympics. She is a role model to many members of the LGBTI community for her outlook and positivity. As part of the panel discussion regarding why the awards are important she commented “everyone needs to be who they are and love themselves, and I get to do that everyday and it’s just nice to be able to spread that to the world.”
There are a total of 18 categories in the Australian LGBTI Awards 2018. This year the awards have added several new categories. The awards are split into two sections: Public and corporate. The public awards will be decided by public voting only and voting will close on 31 December 2017. The corporate awards will be nominated online by the public and then scored by the Australian LGBTI Awards judging panel to determine a winner.
Below is a list of all the awards and their previous winners.
- Brand and Marketing Campaign (sponsored by Coca-Cola), SBS
- Celebrity Ally, Lucy Lawless
- Community initiative/ Charity, Australian Marriage Equality
- Destination (sponsored by oaks hotels and resorts), Airbnb
- Hero, Ro Allen
- Journalist, Chloe Sargant
- LGBTI Celebrity, Ruby Rose
- Politician, Penny Wong
- Sports Personality (sponsored by GM HOLDEN), Michelle Heyman
- Student & LGBTI Rising Star, Caitlyn Georgeson
New Categories in the Public Awards: Music Artist (sponsored by The Star Sydney), International Celebrity.
- LGBTI Employee Network Group (sponsored by Big W), Accenture
- Inspirational Role Model (sponsored by Bloomberg), Sharon Carroll – Australia Post
- Lifetime Achievement Award (sponsored by Vodafone), Molly Meldrum
New categories in the corporate awards: Corporate Allies, Diversity Champion.
Nominations are now officially open for the Australian LGBTI Awards 2018 and you can nominate by visiting http://www.australianlgbtiawards.com.au/public-nominations.html
Written by Abigail Andrew.
Sydney Event Blogger was an invited guest.