Business Hall of Fame to celebrate Tasmanian pioneers

fame awards

TCCI Communications Manager Kristen Finnigan, CEO Michael Bailey and Chair Susan Parr launch the inaugural awards in Salamanca.

Tasmania’s pioneering business leaders will be honoured in the country’s first Business Hall of Fame.

From Australia’s oldest farming enterprise to families that started now-thriving Tasmanian towns,  the Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry is shining a spotlight on historical achievements for the inaugural awards, to celebrate the men and women who shaped our state.

“We are the first chamber of commerce in Australia to do this, and we’re looking forward to again leading the way just as so many businesses and individuals did in the early 1900s,’’ TCCI CEO Michael Bailey said.

‘‘Business is the engine-room of Tasmania, and what better way to honour their contribution than by recognising them with the highest accolade.

‘‘This year we will focus on historical nominees—highlighting those business and business people who pioneered Tasmania prior to 1900, and in subsequent years the Business Hall of Fame events will recognise contemporary businesses and business people.’’

TCCI Chair Susan Parr said business had contributed greatly to shaping the state of today.

“You only have to look at street names, river names and place names to know there have been a lot of important people who have contributed to the state – but sometimes we don’t know why,” Ms Parr said.

“We need to understand what made us successful in the old days, so we can be more successful in the future.

“We could have GJ Coles from Wilmot, we could have Cuthbertson’s Shoe Tannery from the Hobart Rivulet, or we could even have the oldest farm business in Australia, Summerville Farm, at Brighton.”

Mr Bailey said it was easy to take for granted the achievements of our forbears.

“We don’t take enough time to stop and think about these people who have done really incredible things,” said Mr Bailey.

“Some of the great names of Tasmania, like the Krushka brothers who developed Derby have almost been forgotten and we’re very keen to make sure these great names, great people and organisations are ongoing.

“I suspect quite a number of the nominees will have been once forgotten, but when we stop and look at what they’ve developed and how they’ve created the Tasmania we live in, we will see they are important and deserving of recognition.

“We plan to work very closely with the aboriginal community to ensure these awards are respectful across all Tasmanian achievements.”

Tasmanians are now being asked to nominate businesses and individuals with a panel of experts to decide the first inductees across categories including business leader, agriculture, export, transport and innovation.

Visit the TCCI website to nominate a business or individual.

Nominations are open to all and close Sunday, September 17.

The inaugural gala dinner for inductees will be held on Friday, October 13.

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