Unsung heroes, community champions, organisations and long-standing allies of sexuality and gender diverse people dedicated to fighting for LGBTIQ rights and equality, were among a diverse mix of people and groups recognised last night at the Honour Awards in Sydney.
Over 350 people came together at the Ivy Ballroom to celebrate LGBTIQ community members whose work have made a difference to the lives of sexuality and gender diverse people in NSW. Winners were selected from a diverse field of 32 finalists, drawn from over 200 nominations.
Now in its 13th year, the Honour Awards is an annual celebration of outstanding service and achievements in the LGBTIQ community in NSW, and a gala fundraising event for ACON.
ACON CEO Nicolas Parkhill congratulated the winners and all the finalists on their achievements and community service.
“Last night’s awards were a truly inspirational and thoroughly entertaining evening, serving as an amazing celebration of the vibrant, strength and resiliency of our communities. I’d like to thank all the people who submitted nominations, our independent judging panel, as well as all our guests for coming along and supporting ACON,” Parkhill said.
“We thank all of our presenting and community partners – Dowson Turco Lawyers, Sydney Gay and Lesbian Business Association, Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, Positive Life NSW, SBS, people2people, GLYDE Health and Friends of Cayte – as well as our event partners Merivale, Gayle Beverages, Black Velvet Sydney, Byron Bay Cookies and Stonewall Hotel. We are also thank all the people and organisations that donated items to our silent auction.
“We’re very grateful for all their support in helping us celebrate our communities, and raise funds for ACON’s health programs and services that improve the health and wellbeing of LGBTQ people.”
2019 HONOUR AWARDS – RECIPIENTS
COMMUNITY HERO (Presented by ACON)
Holly Conroy: For her tireless efforts to provide visibility of the trans experience, foster greater inclusion and facilitate a space where LGBTIQ community members can be celebrated in regional NSW. Holly was a driving force behind the first Wagga Wagga Mardi Gras Festival in 2019, which became one of the biggest LGBTIQ celebrations ever held in the Riverina. A dedicated volunteer and community advocate, Holly also gives her time to support many of Wagga Wagga’s local LGBTIQ community groups.
Julie McCrossin AM and Robert French: For their outstanding and decades-long dedication to fighting and advocating for LGBTIQ equality. McCrossin, who is a broadcaster, journalist and comedian, along with community historian Robert French – both who are 78ers – played instrumental roles in raising the visibility of LGBTIQ people in NSW, advocating for their rights, and supporting the health and wellbeing of the community.
COMMUNITY ORGANISATION (Presented by SBS)
PFLAG: For decades of providing support, care and information to families and friends of LGBTIQ people. Over the years,
PFLAG has become a beacon of strength and hope for many LGBTIQ people and their families.
YOUNG ACHIEVER AWARD (Presented by people2people)
Liam Davies: For his work in advocating and supporting rural and regional LGBTIQ communities in NSW, particularly in improving the mental health and wellbeing of young community members. Liam was a founding member and organiser of the Rainbow on the Plains Festival in Hay, the vice chair of Hay Mardi Gras, as well as a runner-up for Mr Gay Pride Australia 2019.