Australian Wine Industry Awards

Lauded by James Halliday OAM as “the highest honour the Australian wine industry can confer on one of its members,” the Maurice O’Shea Award was founded in 1990 by the McWilliam family and has a legacy of recognising those that have gone above and beyond to better the Australian wine industry.

While a changing of the guard at both Mount Pleasant Wines and McWilliam’s Wines took place in 2021 by the Medich Family Office and Calabria Family Wine Group, respectively, the two felt passionate about working together to honour these distinguished awards and bring this important industry program into a new era. So, in 2022, in collaboration with the Australian Wine Industry Techincal Conference, the two organisations worked together to bring the Award into a new era, under a new banner – the Australian Wine Industry Awards (AWIA) – and with a new award, the McWilliam’s Excellence in Action Award.

This event set out to respect the great legacy of Maurice O’Shea and what the awards continue to stand for, as well as demonstrate how this new partnership can bring the event into the future and further recognise the individuals or organisations that are selflessly contributing to the betterment of the wine community. Further, following the lockdowns from COVID-19, the time was right to bring the industry together to celebrate this important recognition.

“Maurice O’Shea was a man who devoted his efforts to the craft of making great Australian wine. The Maurice O’Shea Award is to honour and recognise a group or individual that has made a significant contribution to the industry by forging new pathways in their efforts to strive for excellence and greaten the industry as a whole.”

Blend Public Relations was entrusted with the coordinaton of the entire program for the new AWIA – from creation of the judges committee, venue sourcing for the ceremony and gala dinner to guestlist management, talent briefing, trophy design and development, content production, and PR for the new event and winners announcement.

Blend was honoured to work with the teams from McWilliam’s Wines and Mount Pleasant Wines to bring to life such an important industry event. Features in WBM, Halliday Magazine, The Wine Front, Newcastle Herald, and Daily Wine News truly capture the importance of this event to the industry.

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