2018 Victorian Sport Award Winners

Congratulations to the below individuals, teams, organisations, clubs and events for progressing through to the finalist stage of the 2018 Victorian Sport Awards

The Victorian Outstanding Contribution to Victorian Sport Award is presented to an individual or organisation in recognition of outstanding achievement in, or contribution to, sport in Victoria. Winners of the Outstanding Contribution to Sport Award are nominated by the Vicsport Board and selected by a panel of industry representatives who are chosen based on their significant role in the Victorian sport and active recreation sector.

Susan Alberti

Click here to view previous winners of the Outstanding Contribution to Victorian Sport Award

Dean Vickerman - Basketball

Dean Vickerman is the current Head Coach of the Melbourne United Basketball team. In the 2017/18 season, Dean led the team to win the National Basketball League Championship, taking the title in a five game grand final series against the Adelaide 36ers. Dean also won NBL Coach of the Year for the 2017/18 season. Dean's contribution to the wider community is an essential part of his role with Melbourne United; to develop the coaches of the future and he also runs several coaching seminars throughout the year for basketball coaches at all levels.


Wes Canny - Rowing

Wes coaches rowing at Corowa Rowing Club on the Murray River. He coaches across all levels, from beginners to national champions. Wes is a tireless worker and is involved in all aspects of the rowing club, from on water activities to the day to day running of the club. Wes is committed to setting up appropriate training programs for rowers of all abilities and regularly undertakes professional development training, understanding the great value this has on all athletes.


Jessica Haintz - Gymnastics

Jess Haintz is a Level 2 Women’s Artistic Gymnastics Judge and has officiated at numerous gymnastics competitions throughout 2018 at international level including the 2018 Commonwealth Games and the Pacific Rim Championships in Columbia. Jessica also officiated at numerous national Gymnastics events including the Australian National Championships and the Victorian Championships. Jessica runs several competitions at Waverley Gymnastics Centre and volunteers on the Women’s Artistic Gymnastics Technical Committee and Advisory Group.


Phillip Craig - Confederation of Australian Motor Sport (CAMS)

Phillip officiates across all levels of motor sport from club to the Australian Formula One Grand Prix. Phillip is involved in many aspects of training motor sport officials, including educating officials in fire extinguisher training and emergency fire and rescue practices.


Melbourne Ice Women - Ice Hockey

The Melbourne Ice Women's Team won the Grand Final of the Australian Women's Ice Hockey League in March 2018. This was the team’s sixth title winning the Joan McKowen Trophy. The Melbourne Ice Women's team is Victoria's representative team in the Australian Women's Ice Hockey League. This is an amateur National League sanctioned by Ice Hockey Australia and is the highest level of women's ice hockey competition in the country.


Victorian Indoor Cricket 14 and Under Girls State Team - Indoor Cricket

The Victorian Indoor Cricket 14 and Under State side consisted of 10 junior female talented all-rounders and were undefeated throughout the eight day tournament in March 2018. The team also made history by winning a record 3rd consecutive national title at the 2018 Championships.


Scotty James - Snowboarding

At the age of 23, Scotty James created history as the first Australian male to win a snowboard Olympic medal at the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang. Scotty claimed a bronze medal in the halfpipe and was also selected to be the Australian flag bearer at the Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony. 2018 continued to be a stellar year for Scotty winning a a silver medal at the 2018 Winter X-Games in Aspen, Colorado. Scotty James capped off his standout performances year by taking out the prestigious Victorian Institute Award of Excellence in November 2018. Scotty plays an active leadership role within the newly structured National Park and Pipe Program in the US targeting athletes up to the age of 12 years old with the potential to be medal contenders for the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games.


Melissa Tapper - Table Tennis

2018 was a standout year for Melissa Tapper winning Australia’s first table tennis Commonwealth Games gold medal in front of her home crowd on the Gold Coast in the women’s singles TT6-10 (pronounced TT6 – Ten). Melissa also won a bronze medal at the World Para Table Tennis Championships in Slovenia in October last year.


Jakara Anthony - Mogul Skiing

Jakara achieved her career best result placing fourth at the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang. 2018 also proved to be a standout year for Jakara, winning the silver in the Women’s Mogul Skiing event at the World Cup in Thaiwoo, China.


Involve Group

Anna Davis - Cycling

In 2018, Anna won her 3rd UCI (Union Cyclist Internationale) World Road International Time Trial (ITT) in Italy. Back in Melbourne, Anna set a new world hour record on track with a distance of 44.4km. On the road, Anna won the Victorian Elite Individual Time Trial before winning the National Road Masters Championships in all three disciplines of criterium, ITT and road race.


Victorian Government

Elaine Duyvestyn - Softball

In 2018, Elaine Duyvestyn celebrated 50 years of involvement with the Melbourne Softball Association. During that time, Elaine has been part of club, association and state level committees, wearing many hats including a player, coach, secretary, vice president, president and board member. Elaine is a Life Member of the Wingers Softball Club, Melbourne Softball Association and Softball Victoria.


Southern Cross Trophies

Josh Barila - Swimming

At the young age of 17, Josh has already held many executive positions at club and district level of the swimming community. Josh has been a member of the Mildura Swimming Club (MSC) for over seven years and was instrumental in the growth and sustainability of MSC over the past three years. Josh created Facebook pages for the MSC and Sunraysia District and currently maintains both pages, posting information, updates and results in addition to encouraging new members to join. Josh has written and submitted a grant application for funding to secure new starting blocks for the Mildura Swimming Pool in order for Sunraysia District to meet infrastructure criteria to host the Victorian Country Long Course Championships.


Rosie King - Netball

Rosie has been instrumental in the funding of the State Netball & Hockey Centre (SNHC) in the 2018/19 budget. Rosie has worked across all levels of government and with a wide range of stakeholders to elevate netball and the needs of the netball community to advocate for the redevelopment of SNHC to become a true home of both netball and hockey in Victoria. The new centre will be able to co-locate netball and hockey programs currently inefficiently dispersed across metropolitan Melbourne. This will enable an additional 1,000 netballers to access the game each week, addressing wait lists and removing double byes. The redevelopment will assist in reducing the court shortage in the Inner-city area.

Karen Pearce - Basketball

Karen Pearce commenced at Basketball Victoria in 2000 and spearheaded a number of programs including Hoop Time - which now has over 40,000 participants, programs for people with an Intellectual Disability, wheelchair basketball and managing the Women’s program. Karen has worked extensively on the Basketball Victoria Strategic Plan, Aussie Hoops, Schools programs, Association Development, Disabilities and Government Funding. As the current Manager of Strategy and Inclusion, Karen manages inclusion projects and staff in addition to strategic development.


The 2018 inaugural award, the Peter Norman Inclusion Award, recognises an individual or organisation that has made a significant contribution to safe, fair and inclusive sport.

Erik Denison - Rugby Union

Erik has driven advocacy within gay and inclusive rugby and advocates for inclusion, particularly for LGBTI kids. Erik took six months of unpaid leave to lead the first international study on homophobia in sport and completed a PhD leading world-first research at Monash to find solutions to discrimination in Rugby, AFL, and Hockey. In 2018, Erik led multiple world-first studies in Victoria, testing programs to end discrimination and investigated how to stop girls leaving sport due to homophobia and sexism. Erik’s research provides evidence which leaders like St Kilda’s Matt Finnis, use to support advocacy and government to justify funding LGBTI inclusion.


Fit N Fun Program (All Abilities) - Mornington Shire Council

The All Abilities Day is held annually by Mornington Peninsula Shire in partnership with a range of agencies, for people with a disability to try out a range of sporting opportunities. This has lead to the spin off of the highly successful Fit N Fun program that was launched in 2018 to provide a weekly opportunity for adults with a disability to participate in various sports and to learn more about Health and Wellbeing through a range of guest speakers from a wide range of backgrounds. Physical activities regularly include basketball, dance, table tennis and gymnastics with an additional 4-6 weekly blocks of training in sports including cricket, soccer and tennis.

Escaping Your Comfort Zone

Escaping Your Comfort Zone increases the physical activity levels of inactive, or somewhat active Victorian plus-sized women through participation in accessible hiking and adventure activities without focus on weight loss or fitness. Escaping Your Comfort Zone builds friendships and a sense of community whilst also increasing confidence, mental health and a sense of "self-care". The program features 6 hikes per week across Melbourne, Geelong, Mornington Peninsula, the Bellarine Peninsula, Gippsland and Bendigo. In 2018, the initiative grew to over 800 members.

Bowling with Babies

Bowls Victoria created Bowling With Babies to address two challenges for the sport: Increasing the participation of women, and increasing the engagement of a bowls club as a generational hub of local communities. Bowling With Babies is a participation program providing a safe, comfortable environment for new parents to get out of the house, meet other parents, enjoy a gentle game of bowls with optional coffee. The family-friendly environment of bowls clubs is a perfect location for a non-competitive physical activity specifically designed to fit the needs of new parents.


Collingwood Basketball Association

Collingwood Basketball Association has been an important presence in Melbourne’s inner north since the 1970s, sitting on the doorstep of public housing estates in Collingwood, Fitzroy, Richmond and Carlton. The local community is home to families with many diverse backgrounds, incomes, lifestyles, cultures and ethnicities. The Club has a long standing commitment to ensuring as many young people in the community as possible can participate in basketball and enjoy the many benefits of team sport. The club has approximately 940 players in their junior domestic program, 265 in the junior representative program, 90 in beginners and 50 their Big V Teams. Of these, many are ‘supported’ players from the local community with refugee, migrant and / or public housing backgrounds.


My Sport Live

The Victorian Senior Aboriginal Football and Netball Carnival (The Carnival)

The Victorian Senior Aboriginal Football and Netball Carnival (The Carnival) is a statewide celebration of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture and pride. The Carnival was led by the Victorian Aboriginal Community Services Association (VACSAL) and Ballarat and District Aboriginal Cooperative (BADAC). The event was supported by an outstanding organising committee which included representatives from health, community and sporting organisations. The Carnival demonstrated true partnership, showcased by a strong collaborative approach to event planning and coordination.


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