Celebrating environmental and sustainability excellence

Entries Closed 26 September, 2021

About the Awards

Noosa is recognised globally for its outstanding biodiversity values and rich cultural history. Designation by UNESCO as the Noosa Biosphere Reserve, recognises the ongoing efforts of our community to manage Noosa’s land, waters and wildlife sustainably – and maintain a balance between people and nature.

The Noosa Biosphere Awards celebrates the individuals, businesses and organisations implementing local solutions to the global challenges of sustainable development and addressing climate change. The Awards recognise people who are making a difference in our community and are championing environmental and sustainability excellence.

The Noosa Biosphere Awards is an initiative of the Noosa Biosphere Reserve Foundation as part of the 50th Anniversary of the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Programme celebrations – It’s About Life! Winners will be announced at the Noosa Biosphere Gala on 2 November 2021.

Key dates

  • Nominations & Entries Open: Friday 13 August 2021
  • Launch & Info Session: Tuesday, 7 September 5pm
  • Entries Close: midnight, Sunday 26 September
  • Finalists Announced: October
  • Winners Announced: Tuesday, 2 November at the Noosa Biosphere Gala

Know someone you think is deserving of a Noosa Biosphere Award? Nominate them today! A nomination is not an entry, but we’ll let them know they have been nominated. It’s up to them to then decide if they wish to enter.

Be part of an exciting new Awards program that celebrates our Noosa Biosphere community and environment!

Apply for the Noosa Biosphere Awards

Benefits of entering

The benefits of entering this program include:

  • Noosa Biosphere Awards Winners and Finalists will receive an official logo for use in future marketing
  • Winners will be profiled on the Noosa Biosphere Awards website
  • Winners and finalists will receive promotion of their organisation, project or cause through media coverage and social media marketing in the lead up to the Gala event, on the night and following the Award announcements.
  • Meaningful recognition for your contribution to sustainability by the Noosa community.
  • Share the award with your team to acknowledge and recognise their efforts and contribution.
  • Celebrate with your team, peers and community at the Noosa Biosphere Gala.
  • Opportunity to network with business leaders, sponsors and influential community members at the Gala event (tickets not included/guaranteed).
  • Build your brand profile through the promotion of your organisation or cause.

Judging panel

Michael Donovan

Michael Donovan

Former Chair, Noosa Biosphere Reserve Ltd

Michael brings a unique set of skills as a panellist in judging the inaugural Noosa Biosphere Reserve Foundation Awards. Firstly, his wide commercial experience in the arts, tourism, environment and government; and a special understanding of the UNESCO Man and Biosphere Program through being the first Executive Chairman of the original Noosa Biosphere Reserve Ltd.
He has been a judge of the Excellence in Innovation Awards; Tourism and Accommodation Awards; Sunshine Coast Business Awards and supports the Business-Mentors Noosa mentoring program as a tutor. Michael’s voluntary community work as Chairman of Noosa Biosphere, Original Eumundi Markets and Tourism Noosa is well regarded.

vivien griffin

Vivien Griffin

Founder & Former President, Zero Emissions Noosa

Vivien Griffin is a long-time Noosa resident who served for many years as a Noosa Councillor. As a Noosa Parks Association member and former Sunshine Coast Environment Council President, she has contributed to the team effort involved in some of the region’s important environmental campaigns Upon retiring from local government, she identified climate change action as her major focus, and founded Zero Emissions Noosa Inc. in 2016 alongside a team of passionate and dedicated volunteers. The goal of the organisation is “Net Zero Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 2026”. Vivien would like to see the Noosa community become recognised for its leadership on climate action, just as in the past it led the way in protecting the natural environment. For Vivien, the motto “Think global, act local” has never been more relevant than in these challenging times.

phil moran

Phil Moran

General Manager, Noosa & District Landcare Group

Phil is a respected local biodiversity expert. With more than 30 years’ experience, he is trusted by private and public landholders to provide sound advice on conservation, property planning, restoration and sustainable land use. He is a charismatic educator who has inspired many school and university students in his 20 years with Noosa Landcare and has dedicated many hours to supporting trainees, Community Jobs program participants and Green Army teams. He has also established a Nature Refuge in Cooran. Phil heads up Noosa Landcare operations and sits on the Management Committee.

Judy Castledine

Judy Castledine

Former Director, Noosa Biosphere Reserve Foundation

Judy is a Chemical Engineer (graduated in 1974 from Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology with Distinction) who spent more than 30 years working to promote and implement sustainability around the world with an emphasis on developing countries in Asia.
On retirement Judy returned to Noosa. She was selected to be a volunteer member of the Noosa Biosphere Reserve Foundation Board. After leaving the board, Judy has remained an active member of the Foundation. Judy serves on the management team for a charity Santa’s Classy Helpers who every year give support to about 300 families who need a helping hand at Christmas.

Brian Stockwell

Cr Brian Stockwell

Noosa Council

Brian will celebrate 40 years as a Noosa resident in November 2021. Now in his third term of Council he was first elected to Council in 1988. Before his re-election in 2016, Brian had a career in local and state government in senior leadership roles. In 2014 Brian started his own consultancy, Watershed Australia, and to lecture in physical geography and regional sustainability at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
In his roles as Councillor, planner and catchment coordinator Brian helped facilitate the formation of Noosa Landcare, Mary River Catchment Coordinating Committee and Cooloola Coastcare in the late 80s early 90s and has been actively associated with these groups since then. An active member of the community Brian is the current President of Noosa Lions Football Club, past Chair of the Noosa Biosphere Environment Sector Board, past Group Leader of Noosa Sea Scouts, past President of the Noosa Residents and Ratepayers Association and the Cooroy Chamber of Commerce.

Amelia Lorentson

Cr Amelia Lorentson

Noosa Council

Proud daughter of Italian immigrants, Amelia grew up in the suburbs of Brisbane, where she studied law before working as an Operations Manager in Sydney. Amelia holds a Bachelor of Laws from QUT and a Masters in Industrial Relations and Labour Law from University of Sydney. She moved to Noosa 20 years ago where she devoted herself to her family and to the Noosa community. Noosa’s beaches and national parks, are where she feels most connected to water and land, and to her community. Amelia entered politics to effect positive change. Her mottos are: “I am no longer accepting things that I cannot change. I am changing the things that I cannot accept.” and “Tough on Issues, soft on people.”

Dr Tom Wegener

Cr Tom Wegener

Noosa Council Representative on NBRF Board

Cr Wegener brings his expertise as a sustainable surfboard manufacturer, academic and environmental lawyer to the NBRF Board as Noosa Council’s representative. For the past 20 years, Tom has run his internationally successful and multiple award-winning surfboard business in Noosa. His bespoke, highly sought-after boards have led the surfboard industry to greener manufacturing processes. Tom holds a PhD in the sustainability of small manufacturers in Australia, his findings were published in his book, Surfboard Artisans For The Love.
Prior to coming to Noosa, Tom graduated from the University of California San Diego with a BA in Philosophy and a Jurist Doctorate from the University of San Diego School of Law. Tom focused on environmental law and worked for Greenpeace as well as starting the Environmental Law Society.

Karen Finzel

Cr Karen Finzel

Noosa Council

Karen has lived in Noosa since the mid 80’s and was elected as Councillor in 2020. She is a passionate advocate for the Noosa Shire with a strong voice for the Hinterland community and champion for women and children’s rights. A background in medical administration and primary health care shows through in her measured approach and empathy for people. Karen is an avid supporter of the Arts, and currently sits on the Board of Noosa Open Studios as Council Liaison, Chairperson for the RADF Committee and also the Noosa Shire Heritage Reference Group. She has facilitated and led many local projects including Tall Trees Art, One Million Stars Project and initiated the Pomona children’s playground and bus service. The Noosa Shire Women’s Collaborative Network project has been initiated this year following Karen’s recent selection from over 200 applications Australia wide as 1 of 10 women chosen to participate in a 4 day intensive Leadership Training Program hosted by the National Rural Women’s Coalition Canberra.

2021 Finalists

Land Category Finalists
Sponsored by University of the Sunshine Coast

  • PermEco Inc.
  • Dangerbridge Nature Reserve
  • Noosa & District Landcare – Keeping it in Kin Kin project

Water Category Finalists
Sponsored by Tourism Noosa

  • Land & Sea Brewery (Can for a Cause)
  • Noosa Integrated Catchment Association
  • Noosa World Surfing Reserve.

Wildlife Category Finalists
Sponsored by International Fund for Animal Welfare

  • Meghan Halverson
  • Rachel Lyons
  • Dr Romane Cristescu

People & Economy Category Finalists
Sponsored by Noosa Council Economic Development

  • EarthTech
  • Noosa Environmental Education Hub
  • Plastic Free Noosa

2021 Winners

Land Category Winner
Noosa & District Landcare (Keeping it in Kin Kin project)

Water Category Winner
Noosa Integrated Catchment Association

Wildlife Category Winner
Rachel Lyons

People & Economy Winner
Noosa Environmental Education Hub

Award Sponsors