Sport NZ announces 2020 sector award winners




Sport NZ congratulates the category winners of the 2020 New Zealand Sport and Recreation awards.


Originally scheduled to be held in Hamilton in June, the awards were cancelled due to COVID-19, with the winners now being confirmed by Sport NZ via a series of intimate, invite only, socially distanced events.


"It is extremely important, despite the challenges of this pandemic, that we pause to celebrate the achievements of those across our sector and showcase best practice," says Sport NZ CEO Peter Miskimmin.


"It is an immense privilege to reflect each year on the breadth of achievements, innovation and leadership across the sector which ultimately contribute to supporting all New Zealanders in being physically active."


Four of the category winners were announced and presented with their awards this week.


The Commercial Partnership Award identifies and celebrates exceptional partnering for the benefit of the play, sport and active recreation sector. This has been awarded to Paralympics New Zealand and Adecco for 2020.


"The judges recognised this as a strong partnership which has spanned an impressive 12 years. It is a partnership based on shared values, promoting diversity, inclusion and social change while focusing on the wellbeing of Para athletes," says Peter Miskimmin.


A new category award, added in 2019 to recognise Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion, has been won by Aktive - Auckland Sport & Recreation, for their work in developing their strategic priorities to keep pace with the way Auckland is changing and becoming more diverse.


"The initiatives Aktive has created are multifaceted and evolving, lining up with their vision of Auckland being the world’s most active city. This work includes setting up key partnerships and events to champion diversity in sport, right through to their own internal approach to incorporate understanding across cultures and abilities," says Peter Miskimmin.


Aktive were also the winners of the Community Impact Award, which identifies, celebrates and encourages collaborative projects that positively impact children, young people and their whānau.


"Aktive’s Good Sports initiative works to support key influencers in youth sport with the education and tools needed to put the experience of the participant first.


"This is important work which meets the needs of their community to allow more positive sporting experiences for our tamariki and rangatahi. It also a great example of a partner bringing to life our Balance is Better philosophy to improve youth sport,” says Peter Miskimmin.


The Event Excellence Award for 2020 was won by Yachting New Zealand for the hugely successful Hyundai 49er, 49erFX, Nacra 17 World Championships which took place in 2019.


“This was the first time this Olympic Class event has been held in New Zealand and the judges recognised this as an innovative and well executed event. They were also highly impressed with Yachting New Zealand’s focus on legacy and community connection,” says Peter Miskimmin.


Peter Miskimmin also acknowledged all of the finalists in this year’s awards as well as the independent judging panel who were faced with the difficult task of reviewing and considering all applications.


“The calibre of all finalists is a testament to the quality of people and projects across our sector. I would like to personally thank each and every one of them.”


The winners of the two leadership awards - the C.K. Doig Leadership Award and the Susie Simcock Future Leaders’ Scholarship - were announced in late August. These were awarded to Julyan Falloon of Sport Canterbury and Andrew Corkill of Sport Waikato respectively.



2020 New Zealand Sport and Recreation Award Winners


Commercial Partnership Award
Paralympics New Zealand and Adecco Group


Adecco and Paralympics NZ have enjoyed a long-standing, strong partnership over 12-years. Adecco Group is an international recruitment company with 16 branches in New Zealand. The partnership is driven by shared values of promoting diversity, inclusion and social change and focuses on the wellbeing of Para-athletes. The first initiative created through the partnership is the Adecco Athlete Career Programme (ACP) which is designed to assist Para-athletes at all levels with the preparation, training and skills required to enter the workforce. The second is the Adecco Prime Minister’s Dinner, an annual black-tie event with the objective of raising awareness of Paralympics NZ, Paralympians and Para-athletes within the corporate sector.


Community Impact Award

Aktive - Auckland Sport & Recreation - Good Sports® 


Good Sports® is a culture change initiative which aims to create positive sporting experiences for children by educating and supporting key adult influencers in youth sport: parents, coaches, teachers and sport administrators. Good Sports encourages positive adult behaviours that enhance children’s experiences in sport and comprises workforce development, community and bespoke workshops, educational resources, marketing and communications. To date 300 people have attended the Good Sport Developers course. The initiative is continually developing including engagement with Māori, Indian and Chinese with workshops delivered in Māori, Hindi and Mandarin.


Event Excellence Award

Yachting New Zealand - Hyundai 49er, 49erFX, Nacra 17 World Championships 2019 


This event is the world championships for three of the Olympic Boat Classes, and 2019 was the first time the event was held in New Zealand. Two-hundred and sixty volunteers were recruited to support the event, with 15,000 volunteer hours clocked up over six days. The event was broadcast live on Sky Sports, a world-first for an Olympic class event. Legacy was a key consideration in the planning and delivery of the event. One part of this was the achievement of platinum status for environmental sustainability and the accelerated clean up at Okahu Bay.


Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion Award

Aktive - Auckland Sport & Recreation


Aktive’s vision is for Auckland to be the world’s most active city. To achieve this they have outlined seven strategic priorities, including partnering with Māori and keeping pace with the way Auckland is changing and becoming more diverse. Aktive recognises the ways in which Aucklanders participate in sport, play and active recreation, and they acknowledge it is changing. They are now working to empower stakeholders to drive and champion diversity and inclusion, with the priority that sport and recreation organisations in Auckland are representative of, and relevant to, Auckland’s communities. The initiatives Aktive is creating are multifaceted and evolving. For example, to support their work, they have developed partnerships with the Superdiversity Institute and AUT Sport Performance Research Institute NZ. This partnership led to the inaugural Tāmaki Makaurau: today and tomorrow – leading diversity in sport event that was attended by more than 70 sport and recreation leaders. Internally, to empower their own staff, Aktive have introduced an internal Culture Club. Part of this is the opportunity to take part in activities including games from different cultures and abilities, such as Ki O Rahi, Kabaddi and Goalball run by Blind Sports NZ.


Susie Simcock Future Leaders' Scholarship Winner
Andrew Corkill - Sport Waikato


A proud Waikato ‘product’ growing up in Matamata, Andrew is extremely passionate about both the people in his region and the physical and intrinsic benefits that physical activity provides. Since arriving as the General Manager, People and Communities in 2017, Andrew quickly made a significant impact by challenging the status quo. He led his team through transformation amid a restructure upon his arrival and rejuvenated and inspired his team to join the ‘northbound train’ that is Sport Waikato’s ten-year strategic plan - “Moving Waikato 2025”. He has successfully led large teams toward common goals whilst instigating change across programmes to focus on the ‘why’ and ‘how’.


Prior to joining Sport Waikato, Andrew forged an impressive territorial authority career that included stints with the Matamata Piako District Council, Hamilton City Council and Waikato District Council over a nine-year period. Outside of his direct work, he dedicates his time to the wider community in a voluntary capacity. He is an established board member of Te Ao Marama School in Hamilton as well as the Chair of the mental health organisation and not-for-profit Progress to Health.


C.K. Doig Leadership Award Winner
Julyan Falloon – Sport Canterbury


An active and passionate Cantabrian, Julyan has shown leadership in his region, community and organisation at a number of levels. His appointment as Chief Executive at Sport Canterbury followed seven years of experience as General Manager of the Regional Sport Trust. During his time as Chief Executive, Julyan has led his team and community through a number of crisis responses, including earthquake recovery and the events of March 15, 2019. His response showed his ability to be a mobile, innovative and resilient leader who advocates for his community.


Julyan was critical to the development and success of the Nga Puna Wai Sports Hub, a collaborative facility for the Christchurch community that is proving to be a major success. He has also been an important voice in other rebuild projects such as the Metro Sports Hub and a host of other community sports facilities. After the events of March 15, Julyan mobilised his organisation to provide support to the region and community, by offering counselling and resilience training for wellbeing. He has also been a key advocate for diversity and inclusion in sport and active recreation, with his work directly leading to a greater understanding of the need for a more inclusive approach amongst regional sporting organisations, as well as a suite of resources that allows better access to sport for the community.


Through his work he has championed and developed the need for greater cross agency approach to physical activity in Canterbury, especially for the benefit of children and young people.