MEA Announces its Pre-eminent National Awards Program Will Go Ahead

Meetings & Events Australia (MEA) announced that the event industry’s first, most loved and respected awards program will go ahead, with the awards portal open for submissions from 9am tomorrow, Wednesday 2 December 2020.

Now in its 37th year, it is important that the awards be held to recognise, reward and celebrate the outstanding work of individuals and businesses in Australia that have delivered excellence for meetings and events during 2020, despite the many restrictions, challenges and interruptions due to Covid-19.

MEA Chair, Nigel Collin commented, “The industry has been hit very hard since March 2020 with Covid-19 but some events did go ahead earlier in the year and more will do so by the end of December. So with that in mind, MEA’s National Awards program will continue; to ensure we recognise the exceptional achievements, creativity and outcomes that businesses and event professionals in Australia have delivered, despite the industry’s toughest year.

Following a review by 18 industry professionals from across the country and the industry, the awards have been reshaped to recognise the impact of Covid-19 on the industry, the evolution of hybrid and virtual events and of course recognise and reward the professionals, organisations and suppliers that have continued to deliver excellence under challenging circumstances. The Awards are again open to members and non-members.

There is a total of 40 awards up for grabs across 6 categories including an event legacy award which can be entered into easily from your event of the year application, or you can apply for it individually. MEA also invites members to nominate their Outstanding Industry Professional - simply sign into the members portal and submit your nomination.

Some of the key changes to the MEA National Awards Program 2020 include:

  • Categories such as events of the year, event management, venues and products and services now include virtual and hybrid events in the eligibility;

  • The word count has been reduced by around 40% in each category to make the awards more accessible and less onerous to enter;

  • A new award for "Event Freelancer of the Year" has been created, recognising freelancers in a variety of roles such as showcallers, producers, technicians, autocue operators heavily involved in the delivery of virtual and hybrid events;

  • There is a new category for Excellence in the Industry;

  • Bundled pricing has been introduced for members so you will save 10% for entering into two or more categories;

  • An additional month has been allowed for applications with the portal open now and closing on 1 March 2021. Applications can be submitted for events held in Australia between 1 January 2020 and 31 December 2020;

  • This year, given the challenging business environment, MEA recognises that some companies may not be able to apply. So, MEA is allowing companies to enter the Hall of Fame, where they are the national winner in the same category in 2018 and 2019 and EITHER 2020 OR 2021; and

  • The state finalists in each category will be recognised with the state winners and the national winners to be announced at one consolidated MEA National Awards event in 2021.

Chair of Judges, Ian Stuart commented, “The live events industry has been hammered during 2020 but despite the downturn we continue to hear of members from throughout our sector who have adapted their services to meet strict health requirements, and are flourishing. The MEA Awards are a chance to present your creativity and inspire others to submit their stories. The application process has been simplified and there is an Awards category for every MEA member. Don’t delay, jot down your ideas and aim for a MEA 2020 Award.”


Submissions (along with attachments and payment) must be completed by Monday 1 March 2021 – 12 MIDNIGHT. Late submissions cannot be accepted due to judging timelines. To understand all of the changes to categories, points and to assist you in entering the Awards program, MEA has recorded this Awards webinar which can be viewed on MEATV.

Click here to download the criteria and apply online.