SSSI President's Award
Paul is a respected professional licenced surveyor in Queensland and has been a member of SSSI since 2014, actively contributing on a number of levels, most recently as Chair of the Queensland Region. He worked tirelessly to ensure SSSI maintained its strong presence in Queensland, as well contributing to the growth and development of the Queensland industry as a whole, with particular focus on the improvement of surveying education opportunities. In 2019, Paul undertook the appointment of Locate20 Convenor, a role that should have only lasted twelve months, until the pandemic changed all plans…. The consummate professional, Paul was willing to accept the extension of his Convenor term to include Locate21 and has been instrumental in shaping this complex event. It is a massive achievement that we are all here today. Paul is the owner of East Coast Surveys, a surveying firm here in Brisbane. In all roles, Paul leads with integrity, passion and dedication. SSSI volunteers are the heartbeat of this Professional Institute and Paul is an exemplar of this. I know he will continue to support SSSI well into the future.
Allison Kealy is a Professor in Geospatial Science at RMIT University and Research Program Director, Advanced Satellite Systems, Sensors and Intelligence at SmartSat CRC. Allison is currently President of the International Association of Geodesy, Commission 4 and co-chair of FIG Working Group 5.5 on Multi-Sensor Systems. FIG recently recognised Allison's work with the Best Paper Award for impactful research. Prof. Kealy is receiving this award for sustained contributions to advancing the art and science of navigation and promoting and expanding the use of PNT, providing international, interdisciplinary and inter-organisational leadership amongst worldwide science and engineering communities. She has been involved in creating open resources for researchers, and in establishing strong collaborations between international scientific organisations.
SIBA|GITA Chair's Award
Lee commenced studying surveying in the early 90’s, joining the team at Qasco. His youthful enthusiasm and cheesy grin endeared him to the team. Lee’s flexible approach took him to many destinations, including the UK as an engineering surveyor & Darwin as Qasco’s NT Manager. On his return to Brisbane he was (and continues to be) involved in iconic, award winning projects including Suncorp Stadium, Chandler Velodrome and Queens Wharf. Lee then made the bold step to open his own business, Land Solution Australia, and as part of this process he sought advice from SIBA on an SME matter. Appreciating this advice Lee joined the then Spatial Qld Board and played an active role for several years, culminating as Chair. Lee then stood down from executive roles within SIBA and focused on SSSI, joining the National Board, with his term finishing last year. In addition to this Lee has played an active role, at Board level, in The Surveyors Trust, Destination Spatial and 3D Qld Taskforce.
Professional of the Year
Roger managed the Geodesy team within Surveyor-General Victoria for 10 years, where he lead the continued growth and capability of the GPSnet network and was a significant contributor to the business case that led to the State investing $45 Million into the Digital Cadastre Modernisation project. In January 2019, he was recognised for his broad technical knowledge with his appointment as Land Use Victoria’s first Chief Geospatial Scientist. In this role, he has continued to be the technical lead for the DCM project and has guided and advised the procurement team in awarding over $30 Million in contracts for the project. Dr Fraser is an outstanding leader who has made a lasting difference to the surveying and spatial profession over 25 years, in Victoria, Queensland and beyond.
Young Professional of the Year
Zoltan completed a Bachelor of Science majoring in Natural Environment and Wilderness Management, focusing on climate change modelling and faunal ecology. Following this he completed a Master of Environment with a specialisation of Sustainable Cities, Sustainable Regions. Zoltan’s current role is the Spatial Asset Information Improvement Specialist in Melbourne Water’s Business Enablement team. Zoltan has extended his expertise to the broader water industry by providing advice as a requested subject matter expert by industry peers in both spatial and asset management segments. As a member of SSSI, Zoltan ensures he is connected to an industry of spatial professionals to share learnings and insights.
Women's Leadership Award
Melissa Harris is a leading light in the spatial profession, paving the way for greater diversity within a male-clustered profession. In 2019, she became the first woman to hold an office for ANZLIC in its 34-year history, where, as part of the leadership team, she developed the current ANZLIC Strategy ensuring the diverse views of industry and academia were included. Closer to home, Mel has been the dynamic leader of location-based intelligence and spatial services in DELWP, as the Executive Director of Strategic Land Administration and Information and now Victorian Registrar of Titles and acting Chief Executive of Land Use Victoria. Melissa took the Victorian Government spatial data management agenda from a focus of ongoing management to one of leadership.
Educational Development Award
Mark Shortis has had an academic career spanning four decades. He commenced his career as a Research Fellow at the University of Melbourne, specialising in precise measurement. He has undertaken a number of senior positions within his career at the university, He has published almost 250 papers, edited proceedings and book chapters which have been cited in total more than 3400 times. The judges commented Mark has demonstrated a significant contribution to the surveying and spatial sciences community and a strong ethos to share his breadth of knowledge in his field.
Postgraduate Student Award
Errors in model parameters, topographic inputs and streamflow forecasts result in large errors in flood predictions, which impedes actionable decision-making during disasters. The integration of independent remotely sensed flood observations from Synthetic Aperture Radar sensors with these model predictions has the potential to improve flood forecasts, resulting in greater flood preparedness and emergency services support. Accordingly, Antara’s research successfully developed a new method for interpretation of the remotely sensed data. This research resulted in 3 journal publications in top journal
Award for Technical Excellence
With no previously existing technology available to undertake the complex tasks involved in the detailed inspection of Melbourne’s Underground Rail Loop, Veris worked with AECOM and MTM to develop a custom-built remote sensing solution. The multi-disciplinary project incorporated engineering, spatial, rail, software, and infrastructure specialists to deliver a cost-effective bespoke system with a high degree of technical excellence. Utilising a custom camera array, lighting system, and a rail vehicle, the system captures high resolution geo-referenced data at speed and can track potential defects in the four underground tunnels via QR codes. The judges praised the project’s innovation and technical creativity, recognising it as a clever and cost-effective solution to a tricky problem.
Award for Spatial Enablement
The team developed a deep learning algorithm from open source software which identifies the count and species of vegetation from drone technology. Wetland vegetation plays a vital role in treating stormwater runoff, which improves the quality of water entering creeks, rivers, and bays. Melbourne Water have built on their existing drone program’s infrastructure by incorporating machine learning, allowing efficient and detailed mapping of vegetation coverage and species identification in notoriously difficult to access areas. Judges called the forward-thinking project an excellent example of utilising and harnessing spatial technology and AI to analyse economically and environmentally important assets.
Award for People & Community
GNV has been working across the Victorian public sector and community, to protect, preserve and honour Australia’s First People’s languages, histories and Culture through place naming for the 2019 United Nations International Year of Indigenous Languages. Their initiatives supported the preservation and promotion of Victorian Traditional Owner languages, histories and culture through a spectrum of initiatives, including documentaries, workshops, and community support. One of these initiatives saw the naming of 120 meeting rooms across DELWP’s CBD offices with names from Victoria’s Aboriginal languages. During 2019, Victoria saw an increase to 24 Aboriginal place names gazetted and registered. Judges praised the clear passion of the team, and described the project as incredibly worthwhile, extending and deepening the ongoing commitment to recognition.
Award for Innovation & Commercialisation
The team designed and built a world first Confined Space Entry Simulator, an engaging training program that digitally transports participants into a live sewer, smells included. The simulation utilises treadmills and virtual reality alongside real equipment and smells to create a fully immersive training program, allowing for precision planning in dangerous environments. The first of its kind, the simulator holds massive potential on a large scale across not only the water industry, but for Oil, Gas, Mining, and other high-risk professions. Judges praised the project as a smart and timely solution to a prevalent problem in the industry.