2018 industry award winners announced

By Jonathan Nally
Friday, 23 November, 2018

2018 industry award winners announced

The national awards for engineering, technical excellence, sales and customer service were announced in November.

The recipients of the ARCIA 2018 Industry Excellence Awards were announced at the organisation’s annual gala dinner on 21 November. Presented every year, the awards recognise achievements in a number of categories, some relating to recent accomplishments and others acknowledging a lifetime of work. Members of the industry are encouraged to nominate their peers, from which shortlists are devised and final selections are made by a panel of judges.

The Professional Sales Award was presented to Malcolm Davies, whose citation read: “Malcolm is always looking to improve customer experience and satisfaction and always willing to share his experience with his colleagues. His after-sales support and customer service goes above and beyond. Malcolm is a worthy winner of the professional sales award; his commitment to his customers sets him apart. Malcolm strives to ensure all customers get exactly what they need, regardless of whether the sale is for one radio or a multi-million dollar project.”

The Technical Excellence Award was presented to Paul Burne. Paul’s nomination noted that he has had 21 years’ experience in the industry and consistently keeps updated with the latest radio technology. During his employment with Harris, Paul has been a valuable and a dedicated employee who possesses exceptional professionalism and enthusiasm for his work. Following a recent project for the Royal Australian Navy with hard stop deadlines, the project manager commented that “Paul should be commended on his hard work and dedication during the system upgrades; his knowledge and professionalism during the activity was exceptional”.

The Customer Service Award was presented to Raylene Serrett. Her citation noted that “her commitment to raising the standards and quality of customer service for Simoco has made her a true asset to the business. She has introduced KPIs and an innovative, dedicated scheduling system to the business, establishing a strong foundation of reliability, punctuality and absolute trust for their customers. Her tireless dedication in developing client and partner relations guarantees that her customers receive an excellent level of service.”

Every year, each of the winners of the five regional Industry Professional of the Year Awards are eligible for the national Industry Professional of the Year Award, also known as the Peter Wallace Award. Peter Wallace was a long-time member of the radio industry in Victoria and worked with every major supplier and user group in developing and extending the use of communications.

The 2018 national Industry Professional of the Year Award was presented to Anthony Benbow from Western Australia. Anthony has devoted significant amounts of time to training young people, both in his role with Department of Fire and Emergency Services in WA and also since his move into private industry. He continues to push for better and wider training options to encourage more young people into the communications industry.

The Engineering Elegance Award was presented to David Cook, a senior digital gateway software engineer based at Zetron’s Brisbane R&D facility. David led a team of Australian engineers developing a EUROCAE compliant gateway for Zetron’s Command and Control systems to support the global aviation and marine operators who are adopting the EUROCAE standards for connecting their command and control systems to their radio infrastructure. David’s innovative design has resulted in the solution being successfully deployed in the USA and UK.

The New Talent Award was presented to Neal Fernandes-Dodsley, whose employer citation read: “Neal is a gifted accountant who has shown a huge dedication to learning about the industry so that he can support our growth. He has been involved in many change management initiatives and with his support we have greatly improved our quality systems in a short space of time. Finance and operations staff often get overlooked when it comes to accolades and CSE want to ensure that it is acknowledged that Neal is a crucial contributor to our business running smoothly.”

The recipient of the Community Service Award was Kevin Graham. Kevin has been in the radio industry for almost 40 years and is well known to most. For more than 10 years Kevin has been the driving force behind the Australasian TETRA and Critical Communications Forum, having served as a director from its inception. Members of the Forum and the industry in general have benefited from Kevin’s tireless volunteer work in actively managing the day-to-day activities of the group, liaising with other industry groups and playing a vital role in coordinating various events in which the Forum has been involved… the most recent being the highly successful 3GPP event organised in conjunction with Melbourne University CDMPS, TCCA, ARCIA and VicTrack.

Life membership was granted to Jeff Perry from Adelaide in recognition of his many years of effort as the representative for ARCIA in South Australia. Jeff has always been a passionate ARCIA supporter and keen to ensure the best for his colleagues and peers.

The final formal event of the evening was the presentation of the Jonathan Livingston Award. The recipient this year was Hamish Duff. Hamish has had, and continues to have, a long and distinguished career in radiocommunications. The extraordinary efforts he puts into ARCIA on behalf of the industry; the development of the Orion Network which revitalised several other radio businesses and gave them an incentive to expand and grow in addition to his own business benefits; and the fact that he is a role model and mentor to many people in the industry, make him a very worthy and very popular recipient of this award.

In accepting his award, an emotional Duff spoke of his passion for communications, the industry and encouraging young people to consider a career in communications. He noted that the public is usually completely unaware of the work the radiocommunications industry does to ensure public safety, but “that’s okay” he said.

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