Being handed a trophy for outstanding achievement in business, social service, or the arts is undoubtedly special, but when the award comes from your own community in recognition of your contribution, that’s another level again. The Honour Awards is one such accolade, recognising individuals in the NSW LGBTQ community who have distinguished themselves as leaders, providers, ambassadors, advocates, or inspirational heroes. 

Organised by ACON, the Honour Awards have been held annually since 2007, with the exceptions of 2020 and 2021 due to the pandemic.

Its return in 2022 provides an opportunity for people in the LGBTQ community to come together again, celebrate, and applaud those who have given just that little bit extra. 

Nominations For Honour Awards Now Open

Honour Awards 2019 winners. Photo: Ann-Marie Calilhanna

“Not being able to celebrate the many outstanding achievements with LGBTQ communities for the past two years has been difficult and disappointing. But the Honour Awards are back in 2022, and we couldn’t be more excited about shining a spotlight on LGBTQ people and community groups and their many wonderful achievements,” says Nicolas Parkhill, CEO of ACON. 

Nominations for the Honour Awards are now open and can be made via the website (see link below). Individuals may nominate themselves, their organisation, or another person or organisation in one or multiple categories across health, entertainment, community, HIV, media, business, visual arts, youth and community service sectors. 

Nominees don’t have to have any particular job title or status; they don’t have to be celebrities or well-known. It’s not so much about who they are but rather whom they have impacted. 

Celebrating Those Who Don’t Make The Headlines

Honour Awards 2019 winners with ACON CEO Nicholas Parkhill
(left) and Equality Australia CEO Anna Brown (Right) . Photo: Ann-Marie Calilhanna

“The Honour Awards is largely about celebrating those in our communities whose names don’t make the headlines, as well as our more high-profile achievers,” explains Parkhill. “So, we’re keen to hear about people and organisations that have made a difference, whether it be in the lives of only a few people, or whose contributions are more wide-ranging.” 

If you feel you know an individual or organisation that deserves an award, then start writing their praises. Let the judges know what your nominee has done that has impressed you. Have they been active in advancing LGBTQ causes? Have they improved lives by providing health or business services? Have they raised the profile and visibility of queer people as artists, writers, performers? 

Your nominee might have directly impacted the lives of thousands or only a handful of people. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that they have made a difference. 

Nominations will be judged by a panel of community peers who will select finalists in each category. All finalists will receive a complimentary ticket to the gala awards ceremony on August 17, 2022, where the winners will be announced. Winners receive a trophy, a range of gifts, and a warm fuzzy feeling knowing they are appreciated by their community. 

Fundraising Event For The Community

Honour Awards 2019 winners. Photo: Ann-Marie Calilhanna

The Honour Awards is a fundraising event, and all proceeds are channelled back into the community via programs and services delivered by ACON. Since 1985, ACON has been at the forefront of LGBTQ health services, initiatives and advocacy in NSW. 

Principal Partner of the Honour Awards is legal firm, Dowson Turco Lawyers, who have previously won an Honour Awards in the Business category in 2015 and 2017. Dowson Turco Lawyer have been the Honour’s Principal Partner since 2018.

“As a long-time supporter of Honour and also as previous award recipients, we know how important this event is for our communities,” says Dowson Turco Lawyers partner Nicholas Stewart. 

“Dowson Turco Lawyers is thrilled to once again be part of the Honour Awards and contribute to efforts that celebrate the many wonderful achievements of, and community service by, LGBTQ people and organisations in NSW.”

ACON’s Parkhill adds: “We thank Dowson Turco Lawyers and all our event partners for their generous support. Not only are they helping to celebrate our community’s unsung heroes by ensuring events like the Honour Awards can take place, but their support is helping to strengthen the health and wellbeing of LGBTQ people in NSW.

“We look forward to celebrating the amazing and inspirational work of people in our communities.”

How To Nominate Your Hero

Visit the website and have a look at some of the previous Honour Award winners. Among them are faces you recognise and faces you became familiar with after they won the award. 

The gala Honour Awards ceremony will be held on Wednesday, 17 August, 6pm, at Ivy Ballroom Sydney.

=Tickets: $100 standard $90 members (Sydney Mardi Gras, SGLBA, Positive Life NSW) $160 Community Champion/VIP (includes a $50 donation to ACON)

Nominations are open and close at midnight on June 29, 2022, so hurry. Visit the website to nominate your hero.  

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