Nominations open for 2018 Hunter Region Business Excellence Awards

Nominations are now open for the 2018 Hunter Region Business Excellence Awards.

The awards – facilitated by the Hunter Region Business Hub – are the longest-running awards event in the Hunter.

The event was first held in 1993 as the Cessnock-Kurri Kurri Small Business Awards; and eventually became known as the Lower Hunter Business Excellence Awards after encompassing the Maitland and Dungog shires

In 2007 the awards were renamed the Hunter Region Business Excellence Awards and were opened to businesses throughout the entire Hunter region.

Hunter Region Business Hub general manager Kerry Hallett said the region has many amazing but uncelebrated businesses, and that the awards give such businesses their chance to shine.

“Entering your business into these prestigious awards is an incredible opportunity to gain public recognition for the energy you and your team have put into building a solid business,” Ms Hallett said.

Hunter Region Business Hub general manager Kerry Hallett

Hunter Region Business Hub general manager Kerry Hallett

“Unlike other awards, the Hunter Region Business Excellence Awards are not a popularity vote, they are about valuing and recognising businesses that are built on viable and sustainable foundations.

“Our judges look at your motivation for starting your business, the distinct ways you serve your niche, your determination to overcome challenges, your innovations, and your commitment to excellence.”

This year’s awards will feature 18 categories, including new business (less than two years in operation), NEIS (New Enterprise Incentive Scheme) business, hospitality and tourism, health services, not-for-profit, professional services and many others.

The awards will be presented at a gala dinner at Club Maitland City on Friday, September 21, with Auto Advantage founder Kyle Loades the guest speaker.

Nominations close Sunday, July 29; and sponsorship opportunities are still available.

Visit or phone 4936 2257 for an application form or more information.


  • Hospitality and Tourism – highly commended, Beyond Ballooning; winner, Remington Motor Inn, Muswellbrook.
  • Internet-Based Business – winner, Jezweb.
  • Hairdressing, Beauticians and Barbers – winner, Total Beauty and Health, Boolaroo.
  • Retail – Thread and Ink, Cessnock.
  • Professional Services – highly commended, Palfreyman Chartered Accountant; winner, Conveyancing Services.
  • Health Services – highly commended, Body and Mind 2000; winner, Genea Newcastle.
  • Trades and Industry – MV Solar.
  • Financial and Real Estate Services – Merchant Business Brokers.
  • Not-for-Profit Organisations – highly commended, Survivors R Us; winner, Towns With Heart, Kurri Kurri.
  • Home-Based Business – highly commended, Body and Mind 2000; winner, Newcastle Heritage and Ghost Tours.
  • General Business – highly commended, Hunter Interior Design, and Always Clear Pools N Spas; winner, Newcastle Security.
  • New Start Business – The Mine Shaft Restaurant.
  • NEIS Business of the Year – Gymnastics 21.
  • Customer Service (individual) – Lisa Petersen, LJ Hooker Cessnock and Kurri Kurri.
  • Customer Service (whole business) – Hunter Pet Motel, Elderslie.
  • Young Entrepreneur of the Year – Luke Ahearn, Thread and Ink Cessnock.
  • Business Woman of the Year – Natalie Mason, Conveyancing Services.
  • Business Leader of the Year – Shane Fox, Merchant Business Brokers.
  • Business of the Year – Remington Motor Inn, Muswellbrook.


  • 2017 – Remington Motor Inn, Muswellbrook
  • 2016 – Taste of the Country
  • 2015 – Deltawater Solutions
  • 2014 – Hummingbird Electronics
  • 2013 – Banjo Bushland Retreat
  • 2012 – Gecko Security
  • 2011 – itti bitti nappy co.
  • 2010 – BINK Creative
  • 2009 – MBA Group Training and Personnel
  • 2009 – MBA Group Training and Personnel
  • 2008 – Justin Norris Swim Academy
  • 2007 – RTC Group
  • 2006 – Banjos Bushland Retreat
  • 2005 – Northern Highland Travel
  • 2004 – Country Farm Delights
  • 2003 – And the Winner is Oscars
  • 2002 – Maitland Mutual Building Society
  • 2001 – Ivanhoe Wines
  • 2000 – Hunter Valley Travellers Rest
  • 1999 – Kurri Kurri Bowling Club
  • 1998 – JB’s Automotive Image
  • 1997 – Moncrieff Fabrications
  • 1996 – JB’s Automotive Image
  • 1995 – Watchman Golf Pty Ltd
  • 1994 – Goldman’s Pet and Produce
  • 1993 – Molly’s Seafoods
This story Entries open for Business Excellence Awards first appeared on The Advertiser - Cessnock.