Sport NZ has announced the finalists for its annual New Zealand Sport and Recreation Awards, which celebrate individuals and organisations making outstanding contributions to enhance people’s lives through sport and recreation.
"These awards recognise the work and achievements of those leading the way across the sector,” says Sport NZ Group Chief Executive Raelene Castle.
“It is a highlight to be able to celebrate the immense effort being put in by so many to keep New Zealander’s moving – made even more remarkable this year given the challenges COVID-19 has continued to present. “
The winners will be announced at an awards ceremony on 31 October at Te Pae Convention Centre in Christchurch, with 15 finalists shortlisted across five main category awards: Commercial Partnership, Community Impact, Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion and the Jim Maniapoto Memorial Taonga for Excellence in Impacting Māori Participation as Māori.
The judging panel were highly impressed by the calibre of entries this year.
“There was a very high standard of entries this year, which made selecting the finalists even more difficult for the judges. Thank you to all the organisations who put forward nominations,” says Raelene Castle.
Also awarded on the night are the Susie Simcock Future Leaders' Scholarship, C.K. Doig Leadership Award and Sir Eion and Jan, Lady Edgar Lifetime Achievement Award.
The judging panel is comprised of Andrew Leslie (Chair), Bev Cassidy-MacKenzie, Barry Maister CNZM, Dr Jim Mather, Diane Williams and Brittany White.
The Jim Maniapoto Memorial Taonga – Excellence in impacting Māori participation as Māori was judged independently by Howie Tamati MBE, Veronica Thompson and Te Miri Rangi.
The finalists by category (in alphabetical order) are:
Netball New Zealand + Cadbury
Rowing New Zealand + AON
Sport Waikato + AWWA Period Care
Community Impact Finalists – Local/community
East Coast Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (BJJ) – The Resilience Project
Softball New Zealand – Tairāwhiti
Wellington City Council – Wellington Skate Programme
Community Impact Finalists – Regional/national
Aktive – Auckland Sport & Recreation - Water Skills for Life – Tāmaki Makaurau
Volleyball New Zealand - VolleyFest
WORD (World Off-Road Riding Department) – Youth Mountain Bike Adventures
Jim Maniapoto Memorial Taonga - Excellence in Impacting Māori Participation as Māori
New Zealand Māori Rugby
New Zealand Māori Rugby League
Ngā Kaihoe o Aotearoa – Waka Ama New Zealand
Leadership in Diversity and Inclusion
Aktive – Auckland Sport & Recreation
Education Outdoors New Zealand
Golf New Zealand
Susie Simcock Future Leaders' Scholarship
Jason Merrett – Sport Canterbury
Ashley Peters - WORD (World Off-Road Riding Department)
Hana-Rae Seifert - Golf New Zealand
Alexi Trenouth – Wellington City Council