The New Zealand Institute of Forestry (NZIF) has announced the winners of its 2020 awards.
The forestry sector is a key contributor to the Bay’s economy, not to mention national GDP, and it’s been an exceptionally difficult year for many. NZIF President James Treadwell said the industry was working hard to thrive, given the unique challenges of 2020.
“[But] we’re fortunate with our high-calibre industry professionals who set the standards for others to aspire to,” he said. “The NZIF relishes the opportunity to celebrate with the best of the best and to proudly champion the recipients of NZIF’s awards.”
This year’s recipients have been acknowledged for their diverse range of skills and experience. From hard graft and commitment at the grass roots level, to high level policy planning and execution, and academic leadership. 2020’s New Zealand forestry heroes were named as Bruce Manley, Julie Collins and Adrian Loo. The NZIF has also appointed two new Fellows, Bill Liley and Dennis Neilson.
The highest honour in New Zealand forestry is the Kirk Horn Award, the oldest science award in New Zealand, which went to Bruce Manley. This biennial prize recognises a person for their outstanding contribution to the forestry industry at large.
Manley received the award in recognition of the major impact he has made during a lifetime’s work as a researcher and educator. This has culminated at the University of Canterbury, where Professor Manley is the Head of the Forestry school.
“Highly respected by students and industry members alike, under his leadership, the forestry faculty has developed into a thriving hub of good practice and innovation, which bodes well for the future of the industry,” the citation noted.
The coveted NZIF Forester of the Year rewards an outstanding contribution to the forestry sector within the year. The 2020 recipient is Julie Collins. The citation noted that she had demonstrated exemplar leadership, excellence and personal integrity in her work within the industry for decades. Using her impressive body of high-level policy planning expertise, Collins today heads Te Uru Rākau, the government Forestry Agency. “She ensures a strong voice for forestry within government and is a key supporter of diversity in the industry, giving her time freely to inspire others,” the citation said.
The Prince of Wales Sustainability Cup recognises the achievements of an outstanding young forest professional who is highly engaged in the principles of sustainable forest management. This year’s recipient was Adrian Loo.
Performing exceptional forestry management work, he is an environmental manager working with the 1BT (1 Billion Trees) programme to encourage new planting. Loo works hard to focus landowners on diversification of land use through the addition of exotic and native forests, the citation said.
He is dedicated to growing the estate in an environmentally sustainable way and actively promoting these concepts to others. A founding member of Future Foresters, Loo is already strongly committed to inspiring others to focus on the wise use and conservation of forests and their ecosystems, the citation said.