Banksia Foundation

Apr 18
Home The Foundation
Introduction and History PDF Print E-mail

The Banksia Foundation, established in 1989, is a national not-for-profit organisation that promotes environmental excellence and sustainability through its Awards program and other associated events. The Banksia Sustainability Awards are regarded as the most prestigious environmental awards in Australia. 

In 2013 (Banksias 25th Anniversary), the Foundation increased its categories and strengthened its criteria by expanding its recognition from just environmental towards economic, environmental and financial sustainability.  The Foundation introduced the CEOs Award which recognised  Australia’s leading change agent contributing towards sustainability achievements over the next 10 years.  Also, three new Technical Awards were introduced focusing on innovative developments and technologies to reduce carbon emissions.  Finally, a new partnership was entered into with the Sustainable Business Australia for a combined business action voice on sustainability. In 2014, we are reviewing our categories and providing new opportunites for those movers and shakers to raise their hands across Australia.

The Banksia Foundation was founded by a diverse group of 44 Australians who shared a common goal to do more to support and recognise members of the community for their positive contribution to the environment. The Foundation is run by a small but dedicated body of staff, based in Melbourne, overseen by a national Board of Management and supported by a group of committed Judges, an excellent group of consultants and of course our supporters who continue to provide the all necessary funding to run our programs.

The mission statement for the organisation is:

Achieving a Sustainable Australia through:

  • Recognising and rewarding environmental excellence
  • Promoting best practice principles
  • Contributing to action-learning and education


  • 1989 - Banksia Environmental Foundation was formed
  • 1989 - The Banksia Environmental Awards were introduced commencing with five categories
  • 1991 - The first Banksia International Award was presented to the Royal Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
  • 1993 - The inaugural Gold Banksia Award was presented.
  • 1993 - Telstra became a Banksia Environmental Awards supporter, making Telstra the longest ongoing Banksia Awards supporter.
  • 1994 - Parks Victoria became a Banksia Environmental Awards supporter, making Parks Victoria the second longest ongoing Banksia Awards supporter.
  • 2001 - The Prime Minister of Australia accepted the position of Chief Patron of the Banksia Awards.
  • 2001 - The Foundation expanded its award program to include The Prime Minister’s Environmentalist of the Year Award.
  • 2006 - The first DaimlerChrysler Australian Environmental Research Award was awarded**
  • 2007 - The first Banksia People's Choice Award
  • 2008 - The inaugural Environment Minister's Young Environmentalist of the Year Award
  • 2009 - The Banksia Community Grant was introduced
  • 2009 - Magda Szubanski accepts position as Banksia Ambassador
  • 2009 - Banksia takes management of the Brian Robinson Fellowship
  • 2012 - The inaugural GE Eco Innovaton Award was established
  • 2013 - The inaugural CEOs Award was establised
  • 2013 - Three Technical Awards were introduced

**renamed for 2008 program - Mercedes-Benz Australian Environmental Research Award

Last Updated on Tuesday, 27 May 2014 17:13