Welcome


The 2020 Australian Impact Investment Awards offers an opportunity for organisations and individuals to showcase and be recognised for their expertise, commitment and outstanding activity in the Australian impact investing ecosystem.

The Awards are designed around similar criteria and categories to the Global Steering Group’s (GSG) Awards and are a collaboration between the Impact Investment Summit Asia Pacific and the Impact Investing Hub (developed and managed by the Social Impact Hub).

This year the Awards will be held virtually on Wednesday 16 December 2020 during which Alan Schwartz AM will deliver an inspiring keynote address on the future of impact investing: Investing with Heart and Brain.


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2020 Australian Impact Investment Awards


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2020 Australian Impact Investment Awards Sponsor


The Department of Social Services is committed to recognising innovation and excellence in the sector, and we thank the Department for sponsoring the Awards. We are honoured that Senator the Hon Anne Ruston, Minister for Families and Social Services will speak at the virtual Awards ceremony on Wednesday 16 December 2020.

2020 Award Categories



Awards Rules and Guidelines


The judging panel will work to identify one nomination in each of the above five categories, from Australia, who nominates himself/herself or his/her organisation or is nominated by any member of the public. Across all five categories, the judges will look for catalytic action, courageous first movers, scaling of capital and impact and building critical infrastructure (e.g., new institutions). The judges will be looking for real pioneers who’ve left security of day jobs, taken professional and sometimes personal risks to till the ground and move the impact investment sector forward.


Download Full Awards Rules & Guidelines
Nominations close at 12 noon on Friday 4 December 2020.

Alan Schwartz AM


Alan is a capitalist, philanthropist, impact investor and social activist. His passion for business and commerce has always been balanced with a deep commitment to family and community. He is currently the Managing Director of the Trawalla Group which is the family office for the Schwartz family.

In recognition of his contribution to community and business, Alan was awarded a Centenary Medal in 2003, followed by an Order of Australia (AM) in 2007.In his spare time Alan has established the Universal Commons Project “to encourage all of us to preserve and invest in our social and natural assets”. Alan graduated from Monash University with degrees in Economics and Law (Honours) and during his first year at Monash co-authored a best-selling economics textbook, The Australian Economy. Alan is married to Carol, is the father of four magnificent children and five times a grandfather.

Alan is a thought leader on the future of impact investing and has recently co-authored an article published in Harvard Business Review called Impact Investing Won’t Save Capitalism.

Senator the Hon Anne Ruston


Minister for Families and Social Services, Senator the Hon. Anne Ruston, has been a Senator since September 2012. Senator Ruston is also the Manager of Government Business in the Senate.

In July 2014, Anne was elected Senior Deputy Government Whip in the Senate and chair of the Senate Environment and Communications Legislation Committee. She was also an active participant in the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, initiating inquiries into the Australian citrus and wine industries.

Senator Ruston was appointed Assistant Minister of Agriculture and Water Resources in September 2015. She was subsequently appointed as Assistant Minister for International Development and the Pacific in August 2018.

Prior to becoming a Senator, Anne held several senior positions in government and the private sector, including as the inaugural chief executive of the National Wine Centre.

Anne was also primary producer and an irrigator, producing commercial cut flowers and implementing irrigation efficiencies on her property that reduced water use by more than 60%. She is a passionate advocate for rural and regional communities and for a balanced approach to water reform in the Murray-Darling Basin.

Born and raised in Renmark, on the River Murray in South Australia, Anne is a proud member of the community where she still lives and works to this day. She is the only Senator for South Australia based in a regional area.

2020 Award Judges

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Previous Award Winners


The highly successful 2018 and 2019 Awards showcased achievement across the impact investing ecosystem:

2019 Winners:


  • Impact Entrepreneur of the Year: Goterra and Nightingale Housing
  • Impact Asset Owner of the Year: HESTA
  • Impact Asset Manager of the Year: Kilter Rural
  • Impact Market Builder of the Year: Pacific Trade Invest Australia
  • Individual Awards for Outstanding Achievement: Lane Crockett (Head of Renewable Infrastructure, Impact Investment Group), Sandy Blackburn-Wright (Founder & Managing Director, Social Outcomes), Elyse Sainty (Director of Impact Investing, Social Ventures Australia) and Lisa Siganto, (Chairman, ImpaQt Queensland).

2018 Winners:


  • Impact Entrepreneur of the Year: Hireup
  • Impact Asset Owner of the Year: QBE Insurance
  • Impact Asset Manager of the Year: Social Ventures Australia
  • Impact Market Builder of the Year: Impact Investing Australia
  • 'X Factor' Award for Outstanding Activity: Kylie Charlton
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