MEA’s National Awards program is the most prestigious and highly regarded event industry Awards program in Australia.



Reflecting on a particularly challenging year, the 2020 MEA Awards Night held at Scene Change Studios recognise the innovation and exceptional work done by organisations and individuals in the events sector throughout 2020. This was the second time that the state and national awards were concurrently presented and the second year the ceremony was broadcast to a virtual audience across Australia.

Peter McDonald, MEA CEO, celebrated all finalists who were up for an award, “I’d like to acknowledge the effort made by anyone who contributed a submission for consideration, to congratulate those who became worthy finalists, and to celebrate those deemed to ultimately be category winners. They’ve been determined to be the best of the best by their peers. They’ve established new benchmarks for the industry to emulate. Well done.”

Chair of Judges, Ian Stuart, commented, “The greatest impact on the business events sector in the past 18 months has of course been COVID. The whole industry has faced cancellations, confusion and concern about when it will all end. But, resourceful as ever, our sector has responded creatively and with optimism. We’ve learned how to replace and to complement the traditional face to face experience by including hybrid and virtual alternatives. We’ve worked out how to keep our audiences’ attention, how to engage with them and the event's stakeholders. There is great evidence of this in the 2020 MEA National Awards.

Destination NSW, EventsAIR, ICC Sydney, Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre, Touchpoint and Ungerboeck partnered with MEA to confer these awards, and we thank them very much. A special thank you to the Scene Change Sydney team who stepped up and answered our call for help when the event was forced virtual. MEA is always grateful to all our sponsors and urges the sector to support those that support it. Without the generous assistance of all these organisations, MEA’s capacity to deliver its programs – including our awards – is very diminished.

Further thanks to our PCO Janette Beedell and the TPM team and our MC, Nigel Collin, for making the event possible.

MEA congratulates all winners of the 2020 MEA National Awards, as well as all State and Territory winners. Kate Smith of WALDRONSMITH Management was awarded the 2020 Outstanding Contribution Award for her contribution and dedication to the sector. Kate has been an enormous support and mentor for the industry, including as immediate past Chair of MEA, all while dealing with the same challenges COVID presented her own business. MEA heartily congratulates Kate on her recognition.

The 2020 Celebration of Excellence publication will be made available on the MEA website shortly and features all winners’ names and their achievement stories. A full list of winners from the night is available here. And if you missed the live streamed Awards Night, a recording will be made available on MEA TV in the coming days. 





The MEA Awards program is the pre-eminent event awards program in the country, now entering its 38th year. It is the only awards program that is run for the entire meetings and events industry sector, covering all types of events from all over Australia. 

The award categories encompass the entire breadth of the events sector and have been designed to encourage and recognise exceptional achievements, creativity and outcomes for events held within Australia over a 12-month period. When you enter the MEA Awards, you are competing against other professionals in the events industry - both members and non-members. 




  • Recognise those who demonstrate excellence in the organisation, planning and delivery of business events, major events and festivals, special events, cause-related events, conferences and exhibitions.

  • Reward individuals who excel in the planning, operation, marketing and delivery of events; and suppliers, destinations and agencies who attract events, push the boundaries, create and innovate.

  • Identify excellence in venues and national events that demonstrate leadership and exceptional delegate or visitor experience; and

  • Reinforce the value of the events industry and promote greater recognition for the sector within the wider business community.

  • In 2020 due to COVID-19, Hall of Fame inductees will include winners of the national award in the same category for the periods 2018 and 2019 then will make a special allowance where the winner has won in 2020 or 2021.