AIH 2017 Annual Awards

Every year, the Institute celebrates excellence in horticulture with diverse projects, experiences and people acknowledged and recognised for their achievements. In a year that has delivered major disruption across the world, it is timely that the Australian Institute of Horticulture celebrates these superb people and their projects.

October 28, 2017

Acknowledgment of Country We acknowledge and pay respects to the Darug people of the Richmond and all their descendants both past and present. We also acknowledge the many Aboriginal people from other regions as well as Torres Strait and South Sea Islander people who now live in the local area and have made an important contribution to the community.
Presented by the Sponsor Elizabeth Smith – Horticultural Training Pty Ltd

Silver Gum Award

Sponsored By Horticultural Training Pty Ltd

The Diggers Garden & Environment Trust (VIC)


The 2017 Silver Gum Award is given to The Diggers Garden & Environment Trust (Vic) and invites Dean Underwood, the Diggers Nursery Manager (here with his wife Angie and 10 year old son Archie) accept the award on behalf of the Blazey family.

Horticulturist of the Year

Tom Lantry

Presented by Graham Ross VVM MAIH RH
Tom joined the Australian Institute of Horticulture in the early 70’s and set up a local group “Hunter” in the early 80’s at Charlestown. He was later awarded an AIH Fellowship in 2012.

President's Commendation For High Achievement

Sponsored by Fitzpatrick Insurance

Annette Irish

FAIH RH08, (CPH Principal)

Presented by President Wayne Van Balen MAIH RH

This Commendation recognises the work and commitment of Annette Irish from 2005 to 2017.

Horticulture Student of the Year

Brittany Webster

Presented by Chris Poulton FAIH RH and President Wayne Van Balen MAIH RH
Brittany is currently Leading Hand at Mackay Regional Botanic Gardens in Central Queensland.

Sir John Pagan BBM Youth Support Horticulture Scholarship

Jessica Smith

Presented by: David Thompson (former BBM awardee) and Melanie Stray from BBM

Jessica has won several awards including: Gold Medal Apprentice of the Year, 2016 Parks and Gardens for the LNA Master Landscapers Association NSW and Apprentice Awards for Excellence, Apprentice of the Year Horticulture/ Parks and Gardens.

Sir John Pagan BBM Youth Support Horticulture Scholarship

Joel Smith

Presented by: David Thompson (former BBM awardee) and Melanie Stray from BBM

Joel was selected from a number of strong finalists by AIH whereby the BBM Organisation supports strong industry involvement. AIH assists in this regard and encourages membership of our organisation and feedback to members on the experience gained in the UK by the Awardee.

Inaugural Green Space Rural Award

The Green Alliance Western Australia

Presented by Kim Morris FAIH RH. Accepted by Neville Passmore & Glenice Batchelor

The walkway from Hastings St in Noosa out to the Noosa National Park showcases an iconic part of the Australian coastline. It passes through remnant native bushland located upon the hills and cliffs overlooking Laguna Bay. It provides tourists and locals with an accessible experience of the impressive coastline.

Inaugural Green Space Urban Award

Nicholas Rivett FAIH RH & The Far East Consortium

Presented by Kim Morris FAIH RH, accepted by Nicholas Rivett and Aaron Parfitt
Upper West Side – Sky Park & Gardens is the largest and most intensive roof garden in Australia. The one acre “Sky Park and Gardens” is located on the 5th and 6th floor of Far East Consortium’s Upper West Side Development.

Award of Excellence

The Three Nonnas for the Renewal of Horticulture of the Brisbane Ekka

Presented by Assoc Professor Andrew Prowse MAIH RH

Elizabeth Smith, Robin McLay and Annette Irish are known for the purposes of these awards as “the three Nonnas” – the invincible team who resurrected Horticulture to be a major feature at the famous Royal Queensland Show, or “EKKA” as it is affectionately known.

Award of Merit

Western Sydney University & Its Predcessor Hawkesbury Agricultural College

Presented by David Thompson – Hawkesbury Institute for the EnvironmenT
Established on 10th March 1891, Hawkesbury Agricultural College was the first agricultural College in the state of New South Wales. In 1989 the College became the University of Western Sydney, Hawkesbury that still occupies 1500 hectares of semi-rural land.

Award of Merit

The Community Green Team, The Royal Botanic Garden Sydney & NSW Department Family, Community Services Housing

Presented by Michael Casey MAIH RH
This is a creative program using the resources and skills of the Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney and NSW Government Department, Family, Community Services and Housing NSW.

Award of Merit

Paul Koch

Presented by Neville Passmore MAIH RH

For the unique development of learning resources for Certificates 2 & 3 in Horticulture (SA).

Australian Educational Publications and Training (AEPaT) is a family business comprising writer, Paul Koch, and editor Margaret Crohn. Paul is a Burnley Horticultural College graduate, arborist, adult educator and specialist in arid-land horticulture, has over 40 years of experience in the horticulture industry, while Margaret is an equally experienced teacher and educational writer.

Certificate of Appreciation

Associate Professor Andrew Prowse


Presented by Patrick Regnault MAIH RH
In acknowledgement of service as National Vice President of the Institute from 2014-2018. Our thanks and appreciation.

Certificate of Appreciation

Andrew Price


Presented by Patrick Regnault MAIH RH
In acknowledgement of service as National Treasurer of the Institute from 2013-2017. Our thanks and appreciation.

AIH Fellow

Glenice Batchelor


Glenice Batchelor FAIH RH

The Members wish to acknowledge your ongoing contribution and honour you with a Fellowship.

Award of Appreciation

Paul Plant


Chair of Fellows Group

Award of Appreciation

Neville Passmore


Neville Passmore FAIH RH, Jackie Warburton MAIH

Convenor of the 2019 AIH Conference

Lifetime Achievement Award

Marion Blackwell

Presented prior to the conference by Neville Passmore FAIH RH.

Marion Blackwell is a National Treasure and was awarded an Order of Australia in 2018. She is recognised for her work as an environmental Scientist, landscape architect and conservationist. Given the theme of our conference she is a very fitting recipient of this award. Her publications and reports cover a wide field of W.A. interests, especially local gardening and landscape projects as well as for major mining companies such as NBHP and Woodside Offshore Petroleum.

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