2018 Sunshine Coast Australia Day Award Winners
Sunshine Coast Australia Day Awards
  • Last updated:
  • 01 Apr 2018

2018 Australia Day Awards

The Sunshine Coast Australia Day Awards are a celebration of the contribution that individuals, community groups and organisations make in our region.

The 2018 Sunshine Coast Australia Day Award nominations closed on Monday 4 December 2017 and 98 nominations were received. 

The award recipients were nominated by the community, selected by a panel of local leaders and experts and announced at an Awards Ceremony held on Tuesday 23 January 2018 at The Events Centre, Caloundra.

Award Recipients 


Bruce and Denise were each nominated as individuals for this award, however the Judges had a hard time separating them which resulted in a tie and acknowledgment for both of them.

Bruce and Denise co-founded the Daniel Morcombe Foundation. Bruce and Denise have presented on child safety to more than 500 schools across Queensland as Queensland Child Safety Ambassadors, created Day for Daniel, helped to develop the Daniel Morcombe Child Safety Curriculum in collaboration with the QLD Department of Education, QLD Police Service and Department of Community Services and personally assisted families of missing persons and created the Walk Tall Program in collaboration with ACT for Kids. 

Senior Citizen of the Year - DONALD MOFFATT

Instrumental in shaping and forging a region, Donald’s iconic leadership and community service has afforded him three life memberships with Sunshine Coast Helicopter Rescue Service (now RACQ LifeFlight), Tourism Sunshine Coast (now Visit Sunshine Coast) and the Sunshine Coast Turf Club. 

Eight years served as Chairman of Tourism Sunshine Coast where tourism increased fourfold. He also chaired the Sunshine Coast Helicopter Rescue Service for 21 years, helping to save more than 42,000 lives. 

Young Citizen of the Year - OLIVIA LINDSAY

Olivia has demonstrated exceptional personal and academic achievements as well as significant community involvement. She represented Australia at the London International Youth Science Forum, studied advanced physics at the Junior Physics Olympiad (2015) and was selected for the Young Scholars Program (2016). Olivia volunteers her time to a project called The Olive Stories that aims to empower youth. She is a keen instrumentalist that volunteers her time to the Vivace String Ensemble. She was named the Public Speaking winner at the Lions Youth of the Year quest.

Community - Group or Organisation - DANIEL MORCOMBE FOUNDATION

The Daniel Morcombe Foundation was established by parents Bruce and Denise Morcombe in 2005 after the devastating loss of their son Daniel in December 2003. The Foundation was established as a lasting legacy to Daniel and assists educators and parents in the education of children about their personal safety, assists young victims of crime and empowers all Australians to make their own local communities safer places for children.

Creative - JUDY PIPPEN

Judy has supported the artists and creative industries of the region through the development of the Old Ambulance Station, a significant cultural resource. Under Judy’s voluntary management and the efforts of its board, the organisation has moved from a tactical strategy of activating and animating the space, to a more considered strategic approach to medium and long term development. 

Judy has managed the day-to-day operations of the facility and dedicated time as secretary of the board. Judy continues to manage Work for the Dole volunteers, who are engaged both operationally and creatively. Through Judy’s expert fundraising skills the Old Ambo attracted more than $200,000 in funding for building and business development as well as creative project development and delivery. 

Environment and Sustainability - AUSTRALIA ZOO WILDLIFE WARRIORS

Australia Zoo Wildlife Warriors aims to involve people in the protection of injured, threatened or endangered wildlife. Through funding conservation projects, research collaboration and educating the wider community, Wildlife Warriors are working towards the protection of wildlife and wild places. 

The largest project of Wildlife Warriors is the Australia Zoo Wildlife Hospital that treats, rehabilitates and releases sick, injured and displaced native wildlife. The hospital has treated more than 73,200 patients. The hospital team also conduct and support vital research.


Sunshine Coast Lightning was built with, and for, the local community. To grow from a name and logo to national champion in a matter of months is testament to that community support. Led by CEO, Danielle Smith CA and Head Coach, Noeline Taurua, the club has made a concerted effort to involve the community along the way.

The team has done an outstanding job of representing the Sunshine Coast in women’s sport, and, in their first year of play, brought home the premiership. They have encouraged young girls to aim for greatness, as well as making Sunshine Coasters proud of what we can achieve.

Council would like to acknowledge the category sponsors:

  • Citizen of the Year - 7 News Sunshine Coast
  • Young Citizen of the Year - USC
  • Senior Citizen of the Year - Maroochy RSL
  • Community - group or organisation - Sunshine Coast Daily
  • Environment & Sustainability - Living Smart Sunshine Coast
  • Creative - TAFE Queensland
  • Sport & Recreation - Sunshine Coast Sports Federation

View past award winners.

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