Tasmanian Young Achiever Awards

2023 Winners of the Tasmanian Young Achiever Awards



2023 Premier's Young Achiever of the Year - Gavin Yi Feng Quek


The Honourable Jeremy Rockliff, Premier of Tasmania with winner Gavin Yi Feng Quek.



Spirit Super Connecting Communities

Isabella Dewar, 16 of Burnie is determined to try and help everyone around her. Isabella received her black belt in karate at the age of 14 in 2021. She went through an instructor’s course and is now a certified karate instructor. Isabella teaches self-defence for free to kids and adults who have been bullied. She also helps run empowerment programs for people who have been bullied.

 Ningning Lyons, Chief Strategy Officer, Spirit Super with winner, Isabella Dewar.


Heather & Christopher Chong Community Service & Volunteering

Gavin Yi Feng Quek, 25 of North Hobart is a dentist helping improve oral health awareness among Tasmanians. He volunteers with the Red Cross’s Bicultural Health Program, educating refugees on oral health. He provides pro-bono dental services to the marginalised through the Australian Dental Health Foundation. Gavin is also a Councillor and Secretary for the Australian Dental Association Tasmania and chairs its Oral Health Promotion Committee. He recently discussed oral health on TEDxHobart.

Heather Chong, Councillor, Clarence City Council with winner, Gavin Yi Feng Quek.


St.LukesHealth Healthier Communities

Liz van Dongen, 25 of West Hobart is assisting people towards optimal health. Liz is a musculoskeletal physiotherapist who has Cystic Fibrosis (CF). She delivers “Running with CF’’ programs, presents at international webinars, and participates in a podcast series. In March 2022, Liz successfully assisted CF Australia’s campaign to have Trifakta, a drug that treats the underlying conditions of CF, be put on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

Kate Denmen, Customer Care Area Manager – South, St.LukesHealth with representative for winner, Alison Van Dongen.


Spirit of Tasmania Tourism and Hospitality

Kitana Mansell - Palawa Kipli, 22 of Risdon Cove is strengthening her community by sharing cultural knowledge. A proud Palawa woman, Kitana works is responsible for managing Palawa Kipli, the first Tasmanian Aboriginal food business. The business catered for over 200 events from 2020 to 2021. They recently launched Kipli Takara Tours (bush tucker tours). Kitana has a Certificate III in Business and previously worked as an Aboriginal Business Trainee

Erika Panos, General Manager Marketing, Spirit of Tasmania with winner Kitana Mansell - Palawa Kipli.


First National Real Estate Leadership Award

Ryan Davis, 27 of Devonport is an Intensive Care Paramedic with Ambulance Tasmania. He provides clinical coaching to his peers and high-quality simulation training for interns. Ryan presented at the Australasian College of Paramedicine International Conference in 2021 to discuss the implementation of pre-hospital thrombolysis. Ryan is also part of the Ambulance Tasmania Clinical Advisory Committee, which makes decisions on the evolution of Paramedicine in Tasmania.

Helen Lehane, Principal, First National Real Estate Kingston with winner, Ryan Davis.


Dental South First Nations People Achievement Award

Jamie Graham-Blair, 28 of Tranmere is motivated to make his people proud. Jamie is a proud Trawlwoolway and Plangermairenner Pakana man. Working as an educator and learning support officer at St. Virgils College, he ensures that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students have a sense of pride and empowerment within their education journey. Jamie also shares their history and culture as a lead guide with Wukalina Walk.

Dr Jess Manuela, Dentist & Director, Dental South with winner, Jamie Graham-Blair.


Colony 47 Courage to Grow Award

Paige Salter, 19 of Goodwood sacrificed her identity to follow her dreams. Paige overcame housing instability, mental health challenges and past trauma to pursue a dream career in hospitality. She completed a Certificate III in Tourism and Hospitality and undertook a work placement at Government House. Paige started an apprenticeship in December last year and in 2021, she obtained a house and has since lived independently.

Angela Abbott, Chief Operating Officer, Colony 47 with winner, Paige Salter.


TADPAC Print Service to the Disability Sector Award

Mila Skingle, 16 of Bellerive is advocating for more inclusive learning and accessible facilities. Mila started volunteering with the Young Leaders of Tasmania (YLOT) Buddy Program in 2018. She continued with the YLOT Holiday Program before becoming a Paid Disability Support Worker. Mila is also a Commissioner of Children and Young People ambassador, advocating for her peers with a disability to influence politicians and government decision-makers.

Jeremy Pettet, Executive Officer, Uniting Tasmania with winner Mila Skingle.


Motors Tasmania Sports Award

Hamish McKenzie, 18 of Newstead is determined to grow as a person and cycler. Hamish is a cyclist who won in the Under 19 Time Trial Championship in January 2022. He represented the Australian U19 Road Team in the Wollongong World Championships in September 2022. Hamish recently completed his Level 1 cycling coaching course so he can work with junior athletes in his club.

Geoff Griffin, founder of Awards Australia with winner representative, Paul McKenzie.


Strategic Alliance Network Small Business Achiever Award

Courtney Hill - Dare Darlin, 27 of Riverside has a people-over-profit mentality. Courtney runs Dare Darlin, a restaurant located on the Tamar River of Launceston, known for creating exceptional experiences with Tasmania’s best produce and producers. Courtney pays her full-time staff a level above and constantly talks to the team about everything, all the time. She seeks out the community in every possible way to stay relevant and needed.

Vanessa-Lee Doller, President and Co-Founder, Strategic Alliance Network with winner Courtney Hill.