David Newham has been recognised for his drive and passion for improving the lives of young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, being named the winner of the 2007 University of Newcastle Leadership Award.
Mr Newham is a long-standing active member of the Awabakal Aboriginal Community in Newcastle. He took out the Award ahead of a strong field of contenders for his leadership in supporting Indigenous youth and helping them to connect with their heritage.
University of Newcastle Vice-Chancellor, Professor Nicholas Saunders, said the Leadership Awards supported the region's young and emerging leaders under the age of 35.
"Today's young leaders are the key to a strong future for our region. Investing in our young people today will reap rewards tomorrow," Professor Saunders said.
"The calibre of nominations we received from across the region was very impressive and a value cannot be placed on the importance of supporting the leaders of the future.
"The strength of Mr Newham's commitment to building a real sense of community and pride among local Indigenous youth shows true leadership. I warmly congratulate him on being named this year's winner."
Mr Newham receives a package of prizes, including participation in a mentored leadership program and a $10,000 leadership development scholarship.
Professor Saunders said the number of high quality nominations received for the award resulted in a new category being created this year.
"Jackie Sales has been highly commended for her efforts in community-based leadership, including establishing Hunteract - The Rotoract Club of the Hunter and her role as a St Vincent de Paul Refugee Mentor," Professor Saunders said.
As founder of Hunteract, a Rotary youth organisation, Ms Sales has been instrumental in helping to develop the leadership and professional skills of members through community projects.
She receives a $3,000 leadership development scholarship from FordComm in recognition of her efforts.
The University of Newcastle Leadership Awards is a partnership with FordComm, Coal and Allied Community Trust, the Hunter Business Chamber and the Hunter Economic Development Corporation. The Herald and 1233 ABC Newcastle are also supporting this project.