Water New Zealand Excellence Awards

Why Enter the Water New Zealand Excellence Awards?

Your story, your success. Shine a positive light on all your hard mahi. Give your team and organisation the recognition they deserve.

The Water New Zealand Excellence Awards are an opportunity to acknowledge the individuals and organisations that have made a significant contribution to the New Zealand water sector. The awards showcase innovation, leadership and excellence within the water industry.

The awards are presented at the Gala Dinner during the Water New Zealand Conference & Expo.

Entering the Water New Zealand Excellence Awards is Easy

We are looking for short punchy entries that match the category criteria, with key information and data clearly showcased.

Nomination forms will be available for download from Monday, 12 June 2023. Fill in either your details, or your nominees' details. Once completed and all supporting documents are collated, upload your nominations to the awards nomination portal provided.

Excellence Award nominations are open - find out more and submit your nomination here.

Award Categories

1. Download one of the following Award categories that applies to your nomination. Fill in either your details or your nominees details, once completed and all supporting documents are collated. Upload your nominations to the Awards Nomination Portal below.

2. Upload your nomination to the Awards Nomination Portal here.

Nominations close Friday, 28 July 2023.

If you have any queries regarding the awards please contact Amy Samuelu

Ronald Hicks Memorial Award

This award commemorates the contribution that Ronald Hicks made to water and wastewater management in New Zealand.

Ronald Hicks was a water professional recognised for his contribution to water and wastewater management in New Zealand from the mid-1950s - 1983. Through his efforts from 1957 to 1959 the NZ Sewage and Industrial Wastes Association, the forerunner of Water New Zealand, was formed.

Entrants must submit an article or paper that recognises significant work in solving or clarifying sewage treatment or water pollution problems in New Zealand.

  • 2022 - Brent Gilpin, Joanne Hewitt - ESR - A Pilot Study of Wastewater Monitoring for SARS-CoV-2 in New Zealand
  • 2021 - Vaughan Langford, Murray McEwan
  • 2020 - Rob Tinholt
  • 2019 - Martin Neale, Andrew Schollum, Kris Fordham and Nick Brown
  • 2018 - Nick Marquez
  • 2017 - Hugh Ratsey
  • 2015 - Rainer Hoffmann, Stuart Hildreth and Christopher Salkeld
  • 2014 - Rob Fullerton
  • 2013 - Peter Browne
  • 2012 - Paul Weber, Mark Pizey, Fiona Crombie, Glenn Rutter, Phil Lindsay, Dave Thomas, Don Elder, Joe Wildy, Tony Cooper and Phil Rossiter
  • 2011 - Chris Tanner, James Sukias and Charlotte Yates
  • 2010 - Jurgen Thiele
  • 2009 - Megan Devane, Brent Gilpin, Beth Robson, Fariba Nourozi and David Wood
  • 2008 - Giles Altner
  • 2007 - No Award
  • 2006 - John Moore, Cliff Tipler and Graham McBride
  • 2005 - Louis Schipper
  • 2004 - Joint Award - David Ray, Editor and fellow co-authors Andy Shilton and Jill Harrison
  • 2003 - No Award
  • 2002 - Paul Barter
  • 2001 - Rob Davies-Colley, Andrea Donnison and David Speed
  • 2000 Chris Tanner and James Sukias
  • 1999 - Humphrey archer and Stuart Donaldson
  • 1998 - Adrian van Niekerken and Doug Drinkwate
  • 1997 - Taupo District Council
  • 1996 - Paul Bickers (MIRINZ) for his research towards his M Tech
  • 1995 - No Award
  • 1994 - Ray Hedgland
  • 1993 - Joint Award - James Cooke and Bryce Cooper
  • 1992 - Graeme Keeley and John Skipper
  • 1991 - Adrian Goldstone and David Peterson
  • 1990 - Ian Gunn
  • 1989 - Joint Award - Bryce Cooper and John Quinn
  • 1988 - Joint Award - John Fitzmaurice and Rob Fullerto, Martin Ferner, John Harding and Rob Green
  • 1987 - David Adamson
  • 1986 - Cliff Tipler
  • 1985 - Robert Wilcock

Operations Prize

The Operations prize recognises an individual or organisations delivery of an initiative that is fundamental to keeping drinking water and/or wastewater treatment plants running.

Entrants must provide evidence of an initiative, completed withing the last 12 months, that solves an operations issues or problem at a drinking water or wastewater treatment plant.

  • 2022 - Waiohine Treated Water Reservoir – Wellington Water
  • 2021 - Reinstatement of the Pukekohe Water Treatment Plant - Watercare
  • 2020 - Kawerau District Council Water Team
  • 2019 - Marcus Coley, Downer & Leevaai Toremana, Horowhenua District Council
  • 2018 - Sharon Danks and the Triangle Road Pumpstation Commissioning Team, Watercare Services
  • 2017 - No award
  • 2016 - Matthew Keil, Southland District Council
  • 2015 - Alistair Forsyth, Wellington Water
  • 2014 - Marcus Coley, Downer
  • 2013 - Russell Dean, Manawatu District Council
  • 2012 - Mathew Jamieson, Veolia Water, Thames Coromandal
  • 2011 - Ian Loffhagen, Waimakariri District Council
  • 2010 - John Clemens, Water Plant Manager at Timaru District Council
  • 2009 - Gore District Council Team: John Braithwaite and Neville Phillips
  • 2008 - The Downer Works Team: Terry Lamb, Louis Du Preez, Josy Bird, Scott Collinge, Sinclair Carter and Gordon McRobbie
  • 2007 - The Gisborne Water Treatment Team: Pete McKay, Ged Brown, Ralph Ogden, Josh Takao and Lynnette Brown
  • 2006 - No Award
  • 2005 - Les Collins and Dave Neru for their assistance in restoring services to communities devastated by the 2004 Boxing Day Tsunami in South East Asia. Duties performed under the most harrowing of conditions.
  • 2004 - No Award
  • 2003 - No Award
  • 2002 - Murray Clayton of Kaimai Valley Services for his innovative application of existing technology.
    2001 - Graham McClymont, Self Employed of Masterton for his investigation and study of septic tank discharges and their cumulative effect on groundwater quality in a developing are of rural Masterton. While a local study it was applicable to a huge area of New Zealand where there are thousands of septic tanks and groundwater discharge problems.
  • 2000 - Nigel Anderson from the Bay of Plenty for his untiring efforts in producing Whakatanes drinking water from very difficult raw water. Nigels strength,
    enthusiasm and contribution in training treatment plant operators are regarded as outstanding.
  • 1999 - Clinton Lyall of Serco Viatech for his co-ordination of an excellent wastewater team emergency response, during the Pukekohe floods in January 1999.
  • 1998 - No Award
  • 1997 - Stu Craib of Serco in Christchurch, in recognition of the skills he brought to bear when commissioning the new wastewater treatment plant for Banks Peninsula District Council at Lyttelton, and for the many hours he has devoted over recent years as the Canterbury/West Coast Operators Regional Representative.
  • 1996 - Todd Frank, Water Quality Technician, responsible for the operation of South Taranaki District Councils 14 water treatment plants and eight sewage treatment plants. Todd received the Award for the commissioning of the buoyant media clarifier at the Waimate West Water Treatment Plant.
  • 1995 - Adrian Van Niekerken of Rangitikei District Council for addressing, successfully, summer water quality problems at the Marton Water Treatment Plant.
  • 1994 - Bob Andrews of Kapiti Coast District Council in recognition of his achievements in designing, building and operating a water treatment system for Paekakariki.
  • 1993 - Malcolm McGregor of Wairoa District Council for his design and construction of an innovative lime slurry mixing system.
  • 1992 - The Otago-Southland Operators Group for solving the problem of communication in their area for over 10 years.
  • 1991 - Richard Thomas of Hamilton City Council for Sludge digestion at the Hamilton City Council Water Pollution Control Plant a paper presented at the 1991 Conference.

Health and Safety Innovation Award

This award recognises exceptional commitment to health and safety by a company or organisation within the water industry.

Entrants must provide evidence of an initiative or approach that eliminates or minimises a health or safety risk in the water industry.

  • 2022 - Wellington Water for Water Industry Specific Asbestos Awareness Training
  • 2021 - Downer for Three Waters worker geofencing project
  • 2020 - Downer for Proximity app using bluetooth and smart phones
  • 2019 - Pattle Delamore Partners & Auckland Council for using a drone to collect water quality samples
  • 2018 - Watercare for Maintenance Services Networks Team for technical training centre
  • 2017 - Wellington Water for Safety in Design Process
  • 2016 - Fulton Hogan John Holland Joint Venture for Hunua 4 Watermain - Tracto Inner Tube (Confined Space Elimination)

Project Award

The Project Award provides recognition of excellence not only in the delivery of a project but also the contribution of various parties to the final outcome.

Applicants are invited to nominate projects primarily associated with addressing water, wastewater and/or stormwater issues that highlight the projects technical expertise and the service provided to its clients.

  • 2022 - Veolia Water for Frankton Flats Trunk Main Rehabilitation
  • 2021 - Tonkin + Taylor for Drury South Stormwater Wetland
  • 2020 - Buller District Council for Westport water tunnel pipeline project
  • 2019 - McConnell Dowell for the Installation of the New Wastewater Outfall at the Army Bay Wastewater Treatment Plant
  • 2018 - CH2M Beca for Watercare Mangere WWTP BNR Upgrade
  • 2017 - Watercare Hunua for 4 Watermain Project
  • 2016 - MWH (now Stantec) for Eastern Selwyn Sewerage Scheme

Young Water Professional of the Year Award

The Young Water Professional of the Year Award acknowledges and rewards a standout person, aged under 35, in the New Zealand water sector who has made a significant contribution to the industry and general community.

We are looking for individuals who have constantly demonstrated excellence in their role whether as a leader of people, manager of resources or in areas of technical or operational expertise.

  • 2022 - Ben Lunjevich - Dempsey Wood Civil
  • 2021 - Tom Dyer - Otago Regional Council
  • 2020 - Hannah Edmond, Mott Macdonald
  • 2019 - India Eiloart, WSP
  • 2018 - Troy Brockbank, Stormwater 360
  • 2017 - Dr. Emily Afoa, Morphum Environmental Ltd
  • 2016 - Jules Scott-Hansen, Opus
  • 2015 - Matthew Ewen, Filtec Technology Ltd
  • 2014 - Nicola Smalberger, Harrison Grierson
  • 2013 - Simon Mason, Downer
  • 2012 - Dr Annie Feng, MWH Global
  • 2011 - Caleb Clarke, Morphum Environmental Limited
  • 2010 - Suzanne Naylor, Watercare Services Limited
  • 2009 - Matt Savage, Chartered Chemical Engineer and
    Managing Director, Apex Environmental Ltd

Water Trainee of the Year Award

This award recognises a relative newcomer to the industry who has made their mark through their ideas, approach, and hard work.

An employer can nominate a trainee who is currently involved, or up to three years post-graduation, in an NZQA approved qualification applicable to any aspect of the water industry.

  • 2022 - Chloe Edwards - Fulton Hogan
  • 2021 - Huia Anderson - Taupō District Council
  • 2020 - Ethan Keith, Horowhenua Alliance
  • 2019 - Jen Rowland, Downer
  • 2018 - Shaun Devlin, Veolia Water
  • 2017 - Daemn Hunter, Watercare
  • 2016 - Matt Salle, Veolia
  • 2015 - Aaron Green, Downer NZ
  • 2014 - Karl Warner, Downer
  • 2013 - John Miles, Christchurch Wastewater Treatment Plant
  • 2012 - Mathew Jamieson, Veolia Water, Thames Coromandal
  • 2011 - Brendon Richards, Inghams Enterprises (NZ) Pty Ltd
  • 2010 - Jeremy Harris, Network Operator at United Water in Queenstow
  • 2009 - Paul Helm
  • 2008 - Craig Wilson of Waimate District Council
  • 2007 - James Morgan from Waimakariri District Council

Environmental Sustainability Project Award

This award recognises outstanding sustainability initiatives in the water industry.

Entrants must provide evidence of an initiative, completed within the last 12 months, that prioritises sustainable resource use and the needs of the wider environment.

  • 2022 - Eastman Wetland and Cashmere Stream Restoration Project – Christchurch City Council
  • 2021 - Cleaning water with nature - Fonterra