2019 NAWIC Awards for Excellence
Winners citations

AWARD 1: Transport for NSW Tradesperson Scholarship
Winner: Aurora Hartshorn, AXIS Plumbing NSW

 A plumbing apprentice, Aurora Hartshorn was chosen by the judges for her commitment to the construction industry and, in particular, to the plumbing profession. Aurora’s work ethic is admired by her colleagues, as is her capacity to pick up new skills quickly and effectively. Aurora’s open, friendly and confident demeanour impressed our judges, as did her visible leadership in workplace safety. This scholarship will assist Aurora to further her education through her Certificate IV in Plumbing and Services and develop a deeper understanding of her chosen trade.


Merit: Fatima Bertolini, Planet Plumbing NSW Pty Ltd

After a decade-long career with a catering business, Fatima Bertolini was eager to find a new industry where she could learn a specialised skill. Always keen to create things with her hands, Fatima discovered a passion for plumbing. She completed her plumbing apprenticeship as a mature age student through TAFE NSW in 2014 and is about to undertake a hydraulic consultancy diploma.

AWARD 2: Probuild Award for Project Manager of the Year

Winner:  Brooke Emmett, Fulton Hogan

As the Project Manager on an upgrade of the Newell Highway in far northern NSW, Brooke Emmett oversaw more than 150 staff and subcontractors from commencement to completion. Brooke inspired her large team to work hard, work smart and maintain safety – and her strategic planning and resequencing of the program reduced construction duration by an impressive 25%. NAWIC’s judges also applaud Brooke’s engagement with local Indigenous communities, which saw her project surpass the minimum employment requirements. Thirty-seven local people of Indigenous heritage were employed on the project, including two school girls.


AWARD 3: CPB Award for Contribution to Sustainability
Winner:  Amanda Visser, The Star Entertainment Group


Amanda Visser has worked tirelessly over the last six years to bring sustainability to the forefront of The Star Entertainment Group’s business operations. Her commercial and innovative approach to sustainability is delivering both environmental and financial dividends. The Star’s 37 sustainability projects to date have saved more than $2.7 million, as well as carbon and single-use plastic. This leadership is gaining global recognition, with The Star topping the Dow Jones Sustainability Index for the casinos and gaming industry for three years running. And Amanda’s work as Chair of the City of Sydney’s Sustainable Destination Partnership demonstrates a leader determined to drive large-scale change. Congratulations Amanda.


AWARD 4: Roberts Pizzarotti Award for Contribution to a Project's Development
Winner:  Natalie Borozan, Multiplex

Natalie Borozan was engaged by the Presbyterian Church (NSW) Property Trust as the development manager on The Terraces, a retirement living and aged care project in Sydney’s Paddington. After stepping into the role in 2014, Natalie has worked tirelessly on everything from project finance to planning approvals, stakeholder engagement to settlement. She worked closely with the client and builder to unlock an innovative finance model that allowed the project to proceed. Natalie’s achievement is measured in the satisfaction of residents. More than 85% of the beds in the residential aged care facility are now occupied and 90% of the independent living units have been sold.


Merit: Natasha Devlin, Investa

As the senior development manager on Investa’s 10VA project in Parramatta, Natasha Devlin is responsible for delivering a $300 million project – from planning to design, costs to contracts. Natasha successfully negotiated a complex set of planning controls, achieving an additional 20,000 sqm of office space. She manages a team of more than 50 people working on a market-leading project that is enhancing Parramatta’s position as Sydney’s second CBD.


AWARD 5: Acoustic Logic Scholarship for Future Leaders
Winner:  Camille Sevestre, Turner & Townsend

Since graduating with a master’s degree in civil engineering from France’s national engineering school in 2016, Camille Sevestre has worked in seven countries and across five continents. This global experience has helped her to develop valuable cross-cultural skills that she now applies to Turner & Townsend’s complex education, commercial and leisure projects around Sydney. Camille currently leads an impressive nine education projects worth more than $150 million, but the judges were equally impressed with her intelligence, drive and passion for Australia’s construction industry.

AWARD 6: MPA Award for Achievement in Construction, Refurbishment and Fitout
Winner:  Diana Jones, Colliers International


As Project Manager on the Bank of China’s Sydney office upgrade, Diana Jones managed a complex and fast-paced project on a tight time frame. A strategic and responsive leader, Diana played a central role shaping this intricate $80 million project in a live tenant environment, coordinating the services of 28 consultant disciplines. She maintained a trusted and respected relationship with the Bank of China, implementing innovative procurement and staging strategies to save time and money. Diana’s proactive contribution has been recognised by the Bank of China, which has said 140 Sussex Street is the new benchmark for its global projects.


AWARD 7: Hassell Award for Innovation in Design
Winner:  Madeleine Blanchfield, Madeleine Blanchfield Architects


Madeleine Blanchfield’s Kangaroo Valley Outhouse is a bathroom in the bush. Picture a mirrored cube elevated above the ground and nestled in vegetation. The outhouse reflects the lush landscape, disappearing during the day while offering those who use it a window to the world. As the project architect, Madeleine was responsible for everything from ideation to execution. The judges applaud this small but beautifully executed project that meets a functional brief in an unexpected way, creating a magical and ethereal experience.


Merit: Rebecca Deegan, Hansen Yuncken

The Australian Catholic University's decision to construct a FIFA-rated football field on the roof of its new car park demanded out-of-the box thinking, and Rebecca Deegan delivered. The cross-seasonal sporting field features a cricket pitch on hydraulic jacks – something never undertaken before. While Rebecca’s primary role was as Contract Administrator, this qualified engineer took on various responsibilities throughout the project, from foreman to designer, safety officer to project engineer. Congratulations Rebecca.

AWARD 8: Laing O'Rourke Business Women of the Year
Winner:  Rowenna Walker, Aurecon


As Aurecon’s Global Leader for Rail and Mass Transit, Rowenna Walker is a well-respected influencer in the infrastructure sector. Since joining Aurecon in 2016, Rowenna has expanded her business sector with strong leadership skills and now oversees a $100 million portfolio. A proven industry leader and influencer on large-scale and complex city-shaping projects, Rowenna is a role model and mentor within her organisation. She also works collaboratively with others to build a diverse and inclusive industry and to ensure that strong, capable women are given the assistance and encouragement they need to advance their careers.

AWARD 9: John Holland Award for Team Innovation
Winner:  Multiplex HR team


Multiplex’s HR team – led by Caitriona Comerford, Rachel Surgeon, Belinda Abbott and Naomi McGrath – has implemented a team-based workplace flexibility initiative on 21 projects across NSW. Teams are empowered to define and implement their own tailored approaches to flexibility, with leaders accountable for the outcomes. Multiplex now has six years of data to confirm the strategy’s success, and understanding of flexible options has increased by 39%. NAWIC’s judges applaud an approach that Multiplex CEO John Flecker describes as “the single most impactful change we have implemented for all employees”.


Merit: Timnit Tessema, Vanessa Lesicnik, Harshaa Raha and Aleksandra Rakic, Multiplex

Four female graduates and engineers – Timnit Tessema, Vanessa Lesicnik, Harshaa Raaha and Aleksandra Rakic – have teamed up to develop a community-based program at Multiplex’s 1 Denison Street site. The Jump Start Program encourages young women to consider careers in construction. Students from neighbouring high schools gain access to panel discussions and presentations, workshops and site walks to learn about the spectrum of career possibilities in construction. This grass-roots initiative is being driven by four talented women in construction who wish they had the same opportunity when they were in high school making career choices.


Merit: Delivery Coordination Team, Stockland

Stockland’s majority-female Delivery Coordination Team – led by Alana Tropiano, Gemma Maindonald and Ashley Hurst – has saved time and money after undertaking a review of how retirement units were reinstated for new residents. The team’s approach uncovered a host of potential improvements to technology, accessibility, digital integration and accuracy. The judges acknowledge this team’s ability to find smarter, more efficient ways to enhance a repetitive process. The result? Quotes are more accurate, defects have decreased and scope of works documents, which once took four hours to complete, now take one – saving around 2,100 hours.

AWARD 10: CBRE University Scholarship
Winner:  Vanessa Lesicnik, Multiplex

Vanessa Lesicnik has balanced her full-time studies and a demanding role within Multiplex on its 1 Denison Street project since June 2018. Currently undertaking a Bachelor of Construction Management, Vanessa has also stretched the reach of the industry as a champion of Multiplex’ Jump Start program – an initiative that inspires female high school students to consider careers in construction. Vanessa has also been deeply involved in efforts to raise $120,000 for the Royal North Shore Hospital Stroke Unit, after a Multiplex colleague suffered a stroke. NAWIC’s judges applaud Vanessa’s efforts, which far exceed the expectations of an employee in her role and level of experience.


Merit: Kara McCormick, CPB Contractors

After careers in nursing, retail and real estate failed to fulfil her, Kara McCormick embarked on an engineering degree. Despite being one of few females, having minimal industry experience and being older than most of her cohort, Kara was awarded the Dean’s medal for three years running. Today, as part of CPB Contractors team, Kara fulfils her passion for site-based work as an undergraduate engineer on the Integrated Nepean Hospital, and encourages other women to consider careers in construction by hosting site visits and unconscious bias training.

AWARD 11: Lendlease Crystal Vision Award for Advancing the Interest of Women in the Construction Industry
Winner:  Melanie Kurzydlo, Growthbuilt

As the first woman to join Growthbuilt’s executive leadership team, Melanie Kurzydlo has used her influence to champion diversity in all its forms, and to drive progressive change within her company and her industry. As Director of Strategy & Business Relations, Melanie established Growthbuilt’s diversity, inclusion and corporate social responsibility policies, aligning them to business strategy and partnerships. A dedicated mentor, Melanie has also influenced the next generation of leaders through her association with Sydney schools, universities and allied industry bodies. Melanie has encouraged Growthbuilt to embrace targets as it strives for gender balance and today 30 per cent of the business is female. The judges celebrate Melanie’s leadership, advocacy and her commitment to the values that NAWIC holds true: to be bold and brave, and to care and connect.