On Friday night, Mediaweek’s inaugural Next of the Best Under 40 Awards was brought to life in Doltone House at Sydney’s Jones Bay Wharf. As guests began to gather on the balcony for the evening, the Harbour Bridge provided the perfect backdrop – lit up by rainbows courtesy of the first night of Vivid.
After canapes, drinks, and lots of laughter on the balcony, guests moved inside for the formal proceedings to begin. Guests were Welcomed to Country by Gamilaraay, Wiradyuri, Mandandanji, and Wonnarua man, Nathan Leslie, before the host of the evening, radio presenter Mitch Churi took to the stage.
After introducing the judging panel and recapping Mediaweek’s Social Media Influence 100 list that had been released on Friday morning, it was time to get into the awards.
The Audio awards were up first, with James Willis taking home gold for Producer, and Brittany Hockley for Talent (with Mitch Churi getting to award himself the bronze).
On to TV. Mike Searle won the producer category and Sarah Abo won talent, with her award accepted by Steven Burling, Nine’s director of morning television. The publishing award was won by Katya Wachtel.
A break in the awards saw dinner served, and let guests do some more networking and catching up with friends – then it was on to the Agency awards.
The Media Agency Specialists awards were split into Independent and All Agencies, with Jimmy Hyett and Chris Colter getting gold respectively. Olivia Warren took out the title for Creative Agency & Content Agencies.
Three PR awards followed, with Tess Fisher winning the Media category, Rosie Baker winning Agency, and Kate Lord winning Independent Agency.
Another break in the awards saw Bring Agency’s Adam Ireland take to the stage to speak about the love affair that Australia has with country music, before introducing musician Tori Forsyth. Before entertaining the crowd with her unique blend of country and rock, Forsyth told guests that she’d chosen to “bring the vibes” when selecting the songs she’d be playing – a promise she certainly delivered on.
The final round of awards kicked off with Ad Tech, won by Nik Kontoulas. The three marketing awards of the night were taken home by Stephanie Stone (Media), Rosie Baker (Agency), and Alexander Concannon (Corporate).
New Business/Growth – Agency was won by Matt Stephens, and Rachel Miller took home Salesperson – Media.
That left one award left: the Grand Prix, presented by Mediaweek editor Trent Thomas. Everyone who had won gold on the night was eligible for the award, but ultimately the title went to This Is Flow CEO Jimmy Hyett.
With the formalities wrapped up, it was time to party. The Rolling Stone afterparty saw Keli Holiday jump behind the DJ decks, quickly filling the dancefloor.
Top Image: Mitch Churi