Making a Difference

EditorNews Make a Comment

AUCKLAND, Today: The Comms Council has issued its call for nominations for the Inspiring Individual Award (sponsored by Discovery NZ) in honour of Sandy Smith.

Discovery NZ’s Donna Gurney said: “We are extremely proud to continue to bring you the Sandy Smith Award. It’s a wonderful way to honour Sandy’s philosophy and values, while also celebrating the inspirational leaders who are making a real difference in our industry today.”

Sandy Smith worked in the media industry for 25 years, building many enduring client relationships. Her expertise and understanding of the sector led to her involvement in groups dedicated to improving advertising standards, research and addressing key industry issues.

The Inspiring Individual Award was launched in May 2011 at the Comms Council Media Awards.

The inaugural recipient was Richard Fenner, then of SparkPHD. Other recipients have been Liz Fraser, who at the time was GM and chairwoman of the IAB; Alistair Jamison, ceo of Starcom & VivaKi, SparkPHD ceo Louise Bond, Nielsen’s Claire Harris, OMD’s Chrissy Payne, MediaCom’s Julia-Ann Hedges, MBM’s Matt Bale, Dentsu ceo Robert Harvey, and FCB Media’s Anne Lipsham.

“The winner will be announced at the Beacons in May.”

This award celebrates the “unsung hero” in the company; the person who others find utterly inspiring with their generosity of spirit, their patience, their willingness and eagerness to be involved. The person integral to the company culture and passionate about contributing to the company’s success.

The Inspiring Individual Award nominees are selected by their peers. Nominees need to meet these criteria:

  • Is a mentor for others – this person invests time in younger members of the team, inspiring them professionally and encouraging them to evolve as individuals.
  • Shares their knowledge and wisdom accumulated during their time in the industry
  • Is the person colleagues go to when they want an answer that will be wise, practical and honest.
  • Contributes to the media industry – this person sees the value in being involved in industry developments and initiatives in a constructive way.
  • Approaches challenges with a positive, can-do attitude.
  • Challenges the status quo with logic and reason.
  • Embraces the changes in our ever-evolving media landscape.

Nominations should include an explanation as to why the nominated individual is deserving of this award. A nomination form can be downloaded via the Comms Council website ( or by clicking here. Completed nominations should be sent to by Friday 19 March.

The winner of the Sandy Smith Inspiring Individual Award will be announced at the Beacon Awards Show on Thursday 13 May and will receive $10,000 to be used to further their education.

  • Nomination forms here

Share this Post