AHC

The Nike Awards

The Australian Hellenic Council’s Nike Awards were inaugurated in 1996 to recognise the achievements of Australians who have made a significant contribution to Australian Hellenism. The list of past Nike Award recipients includes three former Prime Ministers.

The word “Nike” (or “Niki”) means “victory”.  For the ancient Hellenes there was nothing sweeter than victory: victory on the battlefield, in the athletic arena or in affairs of the heart. Arguably their passion for victory is what motivated the ancient Hellenes to develop their remarkable civilisation.  This passion for victory has been bequeathed to the entire world.

Nike was the name of the ancient Hellenic goddess of victory. She is represented in sculpture and painting as a youthful woman with wings, dressed in a billowing robe, and holding a wreath or staff.  According to myth, Nike would descend to earth to reward the victorious side in battle or competition with glory and fame.

Each recipient of the Nike Award is presented with a representation in glass of the goddess which derives from a statue crafted by Paionios of Mende. The Messinians and Nafpaktians (from the states of Messinia and Nafpaktos in southern and central Hellas respectively), commissioned the sculpture from the Macedonian artist in gratitude for their victory over their Spartan rivals in 424 BCE.  The statue stood on a tall triangular pedestal before the Temple of Zeus at Olympia, giving the impression that the goddess herself, descending from the heavens, was about to land on that exact spot.

Guiding the victorious in ancient Hellenic mythology, Nike now guides the Australian Hellenic Council in its mission to safeguard the interests of the Australian Hellenic community and to promote closer relations between the Commonwealth of Australia, the Hellenic Republic and the Republic of Cyprus.

 

Nike Award Recipients 1996-2010

 

Year

Recipient

Reason for nomination

2010 The Hon Cherie Burton
MP for Kogarah (NSW)
For services to the Australian Hellenic Community
The Hon David Clarke MLC (NSW)
2009 The Hon. Michael Atkinson MP
Attorney General of South Australia
(2002 – 2010)
Efforts for the recognition of the Hellenic Genocide 1914-1924

 

Dr Alfred Vincent
Former Lecturer
Department of Modern Greek
The University of Sydney

Contribution to Hellenic education; in particular at the University of Sydney.

 

2005

Prof. Michael Osborne
Vice-Chancellor
La Trobe University

Contribution to Ancient Hellenic Studies and the National Centre for Hellenic Studies and Research (EKEME), La Trobe University.

Dr Ian Jobling
Director, Centre for Olympic Studies
The University of Queensland

Contribution to Hellenic Studies

 

Mr David Hill
International Committee for the Return of the Parthenon Marbles

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles.

 

His Excellency Hugh Gilchrist
Former Ambassador of Australia to the Hellenic Republic

Contribution to Australian Hellenic history through his three-volume work Australians and Greeks.

2004

The Hon. Jon Stanhope
Chief Minister of the Australian Capital Territory
(2001 - )

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles, for Justice for Cyprus and service to the Hellenic community.

 

Prof. Bob Milns
University of Queensland

Contributions to Ancient Hellenic Studies, University of Queensland.

2003

The Hon. Justice John Phillips AC
Judge of the Supreme Court of Victoria
(1990 -2005)

Service to the Hellenic community.

 

2002

The Rt Hon. John W. Howard
Prime Minister of Australia
(1996 – 2007)

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles and for the Australian-Hellenic Social Security Agreement.

 

 

The Hon. John Olsen
Premier of South Australia
(1996 – 2001)

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles and service to the Hellenic community.

 

The Rt Hon. Malcolm Fraser
Prime Minister of Australia
(1975-1983)

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles.

2001

The Rt Hon. E. Gough Whitlam
Prime Minister of Australia
(1972-1975)

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles and service to the Hellenic community.

 

His Worship Cr. Reece Jennings
Mayor, City of West Torrens (SA)

Service to the Hellenic community.

 

Prof. Colin Tatz
Director, Centre for Comparative Genocide Studies, Macquarie University.

Contribution to the Christian Asia Minor Holocaust Research Unit, Macquarie University.

2000

The Hon. Robert J. Carr
Premier of New South Wales
(1995-2005)

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles

 

The Hon. Julian Stefani
Member of the Legislative Council
(Liberal Party - SA)

Service to the Hellenic community.

 

The Hon. Lindsay Tanner
Federal Member for Melbourne
(ALP - Victoria)

Service to the Hellenic community.

1999

The Hon. Vicki Bourne
Senator – NSW
(Australian Democrats)

Contributions to Justice for Cyprus and service to the Hellenic community.

 

The Hon. Joe Hockey
Federal Member for North Sydney
(Liberal Party – NSW)

Parliamentary Motion on Human Rights of Christians in Turkey.

1998

The Hon. Robert McClelland
Federal Member for Barton
(ALP – NSW)

Parliamentary Motion on Human Rights of Christians in Turkey and service to the Hellenic community.

 

The Hon. Trish Worth
Federal Member for Adelaide
(Liberal Party – SA)

Contributions to Justice for Cyprus and service to the Hellenic community.

1997

The Hon. Mike Rann
Leader of the Opposition
(ALP – SA)

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles and service to the Hellenic community.

 

 

The Hon. Alan Cadman
Federal Member for Mitchell
(Liberal Party – NSW)

Contributions to Justice for Cyprus, the Macedonian cause and service to the Hellenic community.

 

The Hon. Leo McLeay
Federal Member for Watson
(ALP – NSW)

Contributions to Justice for Cyprus and service to the Hellenic community.

1996

The Hon. Jeff Kennett
Premier of Victoria
(1992 – 1999)

Efforts for the restitution of the Parthenon Marbles and service to the Hellenic community.