LGBTQI career mentorship organisation Out For Australia, in partnership with the Boston Consulting Group, announced the winners of the 30 Under 30 awards this week.
The awards shone a light on the excellent work that the next generation of Australian LGBTQI leaders have done, and continue to do, within the broader community.
Following a mammoth number of entries, the judging panel awarded 30 winners from across the country, from a hugely diverse background.
Winners were awarded based on their tangible contributions to bettering the lives of LGBTQI people in Australia; success in their respective career; and living the qualities of a role model, which organisers say are “authenticity, courage and resilience.”
Three category winners were then announced, based on their embodiment of each of the previously mentioned qualities.
The ACT’s Oscar Kaspi-Crutchett won in the “Living the qualities of a role model” category.
18-year-old Kaspi-Crutchett is a young activist currently studying at the Australian National University.
At age sixteen, Oscar founded Students for Marriage Equality Australia, a not-for-profit run exclusively by under-18s.
He organised the 2017 March for Safe Schools and has spoken at counter-protests against Reclaim Australia and other hate groups.
“I feel very humbled to be recognised by this award and hope to give back as much as I can to the LGBTI community who have given me so much,” Kaspi-Crutchett said, after receiving his award.
26-year-old Delia Deng from NSW won in the “Success in their career” category.
Currently at global software firm SAP, she helps organisations and C-Suite leaders spend more intelligently and across more diverse businesses using new and innovative technologies.
She’s influenced over AUD$10m worth of opportunities, conducted sales and diversity training, and has been recognised as a change catalyst and a leader.
“I hope this award shows people, particularly those from a culturally and academically diverse background, that they are not alone,” Deng sai.
“That, together, we are able to smash all kinds of ceilings and succeed in all our pursuits.”
27-year-old Victorian Liam Elphick won in the “Tangible contributions to bettering the lives of LGBTIQ people in Australia” category.
Liam is a legal academic with over six years of teaching experience and expertise in discrimination law and LGBTQI rights.
He researches and writes on LGBTQI discrimination issues, and is a regular media commentator on LGBTQI rights, including on ‘gay wedding cake’ cases, religious exemptions, and the inclusion of transgender, gender-diverse and intersex athletes in sport.
“It means so much to receive this individual honour, but more importantly I hope these awards show vulnerable members of our rainbow community that they are not alone and that there is an army of people who will fight for their right to be themselves, to belong, and to be loved,” Elphick said.
The full list of the 30 Under 30 are as follows:
-NSW: Charbel Zada, 25. President of Macquarie University Queer Collective and president and co-founder of the Sydney Queer And Disabled (SquAD) group.
-NSW: Jack Crane, 29. Diversity and inclusivity consultant.
-NSW: Sebastian Rodrigues Alarcon, 29. International lawyer and MBA candidate.
-NSW: Amber Loomis, 26. Sydney Bi+ Network president and sexual violence prevention advocate.
-NSW: Andrew Pagonis, 24. Associate Marketing Manager at Google.
-NSW: Delia Deng, 26. Tech advisor and equality advocate.
-NSW: Henness Hing Garm Wong. Doctor of Medicine candidate and Ally Network advisory committee member.
-QLD: Maddison Harrington, 24. Law graduate and transgender advocate.
-QLD: Elise Stephenson, 27. Social entrepreneur and PHD candidate.
-QLD: Chloe Bennett, 25. Commercial litigation lawyer at Clayton Utz.
-QLD Shaun D’Souza, 24. Youth worker and LGBTQI activist.
-QLD: Ashleigh Jensen, 28. Communications specialist at Youi Insurance.
-QLD: Conor Cusack, 26. Co-chair of the Queensland Medical Students Council.
-WA: Thomas Drake-Brockman. Third year student doctor.
-VIC: James Lolicato, 27. Co-founder and director of Pride Cup Australia, founder Proud2Play.
-VIC: Margot Fink, 25. Transgender Victoria board member and Minus18 advocate.
-VIC: Nevo Zisin, 23. Transgender Victoria trainer and Pinnacle Foundation mentor.
-VIC: Liam Elphick, 27/ Legal academic and advocate.
-VIC: Mama Alto, -30. Jazz singer and cabaret performer.
-SA: Ben Nielsen, 27. ABC News reporter and civil marriage celebrant.
-SA: Natrydd Sigurthur, 29. University of South Australia Rainbow Club president.
-SA: Sean Henschke, 20. Flinders University Queer Society founder.
-SA: Thomas Fonua, 27. Drag performer, choreographer and artistic directr.
-WA: George Foulkes-Taylor, 26. Master of Human Rights student and Kal Queers founder.
-WA: Mackenzie Paige Godson, 29. PwC senior manager and GLEE network leader.
-WA: Tegan Harrington, 29. Lawyer and Interfirm Perth founder.
-TAS: Liam Carswell, 29. Media advisor and LIMBO party co-organiser.
-TAS: Georgia Burke, 29. Family Law Practitioners Association of Tasmania vice-president, co-chair of Australian Lawyers for Human Rights LGBTI subcommittee, LIMBO party co-organiser.
-ACT: Oscar Kaspi-Crutchett, 18. Students for Marriage Equality founder and March for Safe Schools organiser.
-ACT: Connor Haas, 23. RAAF officer.