National Leadership Award

The Alumni Award for National Leadership requires demonstration of leadership and/or entrepreneurship initiatives with national reach, either in Australia or overseas.

Past recipients include national level leaders across the sectors of arts, health, innovation and public service.

Nominees must comply with the following selection criteria

  • Hold a minimum undergraduate Bachelor degree from the University of Newcastle
  • Be aged over 35 years at the time of nomination
  • Demonstrate leadership and/or entrepreneurship at a national level, in a non-academic sector.

2020 Recipient
Kevin Young

Non-Executive Director - Former Managing Director of Sydney Water 
Master of Business Administration 1991
Bachelor of Engineering 1979

Kevin Young

Kevin Young served as Managing Director of Sydney Water for eight years, leading through significant change as they adopted a new vision, strategy, and structure.

Sydney Water Corporation performs a critical service, with more than 5 million customers in the Greater Sydney/Illawarra region. Under his leadership, Sydney Water took customer satisfaction and reputation to all-time highs and achieved significant gains in culture, safety, diversity, and digital transformation. Kevin achieved this by introducing remarkable initiatives to promote cooperation and major productivity improvements between managers, employees, and union.

Before taking the most senior job in the Australian water industry, Kevin served as Managing Director of Hunter Water Corporation for seven years. He also led a culture change program here, with a focus on constructive behaviours. Since mid-2019, he has served as Non-Executive Director of TasWater and Deputy Chair of WaterAid Australia.

The University of Newcastle acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands within our footprint areas: Awabakal, Darkinjung, Biripai, Worimi, Wonnarua, and Eora Nations. We also pay respect to the wisdom of our Elders past and present.