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The Golden Wattle Award

What is the Golden Wattle Award?

The award is an honorary recognition of the actions or achievements of an Australian or Australians whose contributions in the past 12 months deserve special acknowledgement by Australians.

Determination of the award is based on an outstanding or exceptional contribution to Australia (the land) or the Australian Spirit (the people) in or from any field of endeavour. It recognises the Australian who has brought ‘gold’ to Australia that year.

The Golden Wattle Award winner is announced by the Wattle Day Association each year on 1 September (National Wattle Day)

Golden Wattle (Acacia pycnantha) is Australia’s national floral emblem. The award is presented as part of the Week of the Wattle celebrations around National Wattle Day, celebrated nationally since 1992 on 1 September.

The Golden Wattle award is an honorary one, there being no physical prize or monetary component. It does, however, endow the winners with honourable recognition of their work or actions as being noble and expressing the best of the Australian spirit. 

In 2020 Australia’s health and medical professionals and allied workers, were recognised with this Award. Tennis greats Ashleigh Barty and Dylan Alcott were joint winners of the 2019 Golden Wattle Award.

Previous Golden Wattle Award winners were cave rescuers, Craig Challen and Richard Harris (2018), Samuel Johnson and his sister, Connie (2017), Melbourne Cup winning jockey Michelle Payne and her champion strapper brother, Steve (2016), surfers Julian Wilson & Mick Fanning (2015), VC winner Ben Roberts-Smith (2014), Mel Irons a Tasmanian student and community activist (2013), Nobel Prize winner Professor Brian Schmidt (2012) and Tour De France Winner Cadel Evans (2011).