Excellence in Property Awards

API Excellence in Property Awards

The Australian Property Institute is proud to announce a revitalised Excellence in Property Awards program designed to recognise both individuals and organisations in the public and private sector who are leading the way in the property sector.

Click here to view the Award Finalists


The 2018 API Excellence in Property Awards will be presented at the Gala Dinner at the API National Property Conference on Friday 2 November on the Gold Coast.

Click here to view the API Excellence in Property Awards

Workplace Diversity and Culture Award

Sponsored by:

This award recognises leadership and excellence from an organisation or government department in promoting diversity and creating a progressive workplace culture for the advancement of the property sector.

Open to organisations and government departments.

Applications must address the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated commitment to diversity in the workplace and the industry, evidenced by the establishment of programs or policies showing measurable change 
  • Demonstrated commitment to improving standards of practice within the organisation and in the wider profession through ongoing development of staff
  • Demonstrated commitment to the creation of a positive workplace culture which helps to attract/retain staff and gives back to the community

Valuation Team of the Year

Sponsored by:

This award recognises excellence in the application of valuation standards and a commitment to best practice across a valuation team.

Open to a team whose primary function is in valuations.

Applications must address the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated commitment to achieving best practice in valuation practice
  • Implementation of quality management systems resulting in measurable improvements in customer/client satisfaction and high-quality outcomes

Young Professional of the Year

Sponsored by:

This award recognises outstanding contribution and professional excellence of a young property professional.

Open to an individual under the age of 35 (as of 31 December 2018)

Applications must address the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated consistently high standard of professional excellence, ethics, and dedication to the property industry
  • Demonstrated personal contribution to the API community of Young Property Professionals, as an active volunteer, advocate and role model 

Innovation in Property Award

Sponsored by:
Bond University

This award recognises innovation from an individual, team or organisation in the property sector. 

Open to an individual, team or organisation.

Applications must address the following criteria:

  • Development and implementation of an innovative project, product, technology or system
  • Demonstrated benefit of the project, product, technology or system to the property industry as a whole and/or the community

The Lesley Bennett Women in Property Award 

Sponsored by:

This Award, named after the Australian Property Institute’s first female member, recognises leadership, professionalism and outstanding property community contribution.

Lesley Bennett graduated from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology in 1961 and was admitted as the first female Associate of the Institute on 7 June 1962. She was employed in the Real Estate Office of the Victorian Railways and after graduation was made a staff valuer.

Open to a female member of the Australian Property Institute

Applications must address the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated leadership in the property industry 
  • Contribution to the property profession and community

The Colonel Alfred Clifford Catt Award 

Sponsored by:

This Award, named in honour of the first President of the Commonwealth Institute of Valuers (the Australian Property Institute’s original name), recognises contribution and commitment to the property profession and the community of the Australian Property Institute.

Open to a current or past member of the Australian Property Institute (may be awarded posthumously) 

Applications must address the following criteria:

  • Demonstrated commitment to the vision, purpose and strategic goals of the Australian Property Institute
  • Personal commitment to the property profession and/or to the Australian Property Institute as a volunteer, advocate and role model
  • Demonstrated service to the property sector and/or the Australian Property Institute


Award Judges

The API is proud to announce the judges for our 2018 Excellence in Property Awards – a panel of highly regarded property professionals whose knowledge collectively covers the broad spectrum of award categories. Judging will commence on 10 September with the finalist being announced early October.

The Judges are:

  • Drew Castley, Partner, Hall & Wilcox
  • Ashley Church, CEO, Property Institute of New Zealand
  • Emily Dyer, Leasing Executive, JLL
  • Amelia Hodge, CEO, Australian Property Institute
  • Robert Marsh, Valuer General, Victoria
  • Rosemary Smithson, Property Industry Consultant
Click here to read more about the Award Judges
Drew Castley
Partner, Hall & Wilcox

Drew has over 20 years’ experience as an insurance and commercial litigation lawyer. His area of focus has been the defence of professional negligence claims, directors' and officers' claims and medical malpractice.  His commercial dispute practice includes property, shareholder, partnership and joint venture disputes, domestic and commercial building disputes, injunctive and declaratory relief and administrative law.  Drew advises on risk management for professional service firms.  

Drew has been an Associate member of the API since 2003 and has served on the Queensland CPD Committee.

Drew has been listed in The Best Lawyers in Australia in insurance law, litigation and professional malpractice litigation every year since 2011, he was additionally listed for ethics and professional responsibility practice 2019. He is listed as a preeminent professional indemnity lawyer in Queensland in Doyle's Guide to the Australian Legal Profession.

Ashley Church
CEO, Property Institute of New Zealand

Ashley is a highly regard property in New Zealand with an extensive background in the property industry, going back more than 30 years. As the CEO of the Property Institute since 2015, he has transformed that organisation into a highly visible property advocacy body. He was formerly CEO of the Auckland Property Investors Association between 2005 & 2007, and PropertyPlus between 2007 & 2008.  He was also the youngest person ever elected to the Napier City Council and served on that Authority between 1989 &1998. Ashley has a high media profile, is frequently quoted on radio and in print and appears regularly as a guest commentator and industry expert in national media and television programmes. 

Emily Dyer
Leasing Executive, JLL

Emily is an executive leasing agent in WA having been recruited by the JLL Perth Office leasing team from within JLL’s Valuation and Advisory business. She commenced her career at JLL in 2010 and completed her Bachelor of Commerce, majoring in property Valuation in 2011. Emily is qualified as Certified Practising Valuer and has gained a comprehensive knowledge from working in commercial valuations for 5 years and being exposed to a wide range of property types. She is the current chair of the Australian Property Institute’s Young Property Professionals in WA and a WA API Divisional Council committee member. Additionally, she helps encourage young and upcoming property professionals as a committee member for the Property Education Foundation (PEF). 
Amelia Hodge

Amelia Hodge
Chief Executive Officer, Australian Property Institute

Amelia has enjoyed a senior executive career spanning 25 years, with her depth of experience driving successful outcomes across a range of sectors, projects and industries.

Her most recent executive role was as the CEO of Qld Law Society and she has held senior management and project roles with Origin Energy, Powerlink Queensland, the Cross River Rail Delivery Authority and Coffey Commercial Advisory, following her legal career in the property sector.

She has held Non Executive Directorships with Transmax, the Gladstone Water Board, 3rd Space and Artisan Qld, has chaired board audit and risk committees and sits on the advisory board of two tech startups, LawAdvisor and Obzervr. On behalf of the Qld Office for Women, Amelia also sat on the Great Artesian Basin Advisory Board.

Robert Marsh
Valuer General, Victoria

Robert is the Valuer General for Victoria with responsibility for Victorian Government statutory valuation requirements. In this role he has made significant changes to valuation policy and practice; including the introduction and implementation of the Victorian fire services property levy and most recently by providing the policy and legislation for the introduction of annual centralised valuations for rating and taxation purposes.  He has held previous roles with the City of Melbourne, Auckland City Council and Arthur Anderson. 

Robert is a Fellow of the Australian Property Institute and Chair of the Institutes Panel of Examiners. He is a member and past president of the Municipal Group of Valuers and regularly presents at Universities and industry forums on statutory valuations. His tertiary qualifications are Assoc Dip Valuations - RMIT, MBA - Swinburne and Company Directors Course Dip - AICD.

In his spare time, Robert Marsh is a Brigadier in the Army Reserve and a graduate of the Australian Army Command and Staff College. In his Army capacity, he has commanded Infantry and University Regiments and commanded Victoria’s 4th Brigade. He is currently serving with Defence’s International Policy Division.

Rosemary Smithson
Property Industry Consultant

Rosemary Smithson is the former National Chief Executive Officer of the Property Industry Foundation – an organisation that makes a tangible difference to the serious and persistent problem of youth homelessness.  The organisation achieves this by partnering with respected charities to build safe environments and support charity-managed initiatives focused on education, employment and well-being. The Foundation’s commitment results in positive, life-changing impact on at-risk and homeless young people while achieving maximum social return on the industry’s investment.

Over the last 20 years, the Foundation’s Corporate Donors and thousands of people from across the industry have donated their time, skills and money to rebuild the lives of young people who do not have a safe and secure place to live.  Over $20million in cash donations has been distributed to over 30 different charities; in the past 6 years $6.5m has been invested into vital programs, helping our charities operating at the coal-face to rebuild young lives.  In addition to the cash distribution, thousands of dollars has been distributed by way of in-kind support across the various projects and programs. 


For any questions about the Excellence in Property Awards, please contact Maria Humphreys, National Manager Events on 02 9299 1811 or maria.humphreys@api.org.au