Previous John Oxley Library Award winners

As Australia’s leading library of Queensland's documentary heritage, the John Oxley Library plays a vital role in the development and communication of Queensland memory.

The John Oxley Library Award recognises an individual who had made an outstanding contribution to the appreciation of Queensland history. The Award is granted annually to promote the value of historical knowledge and its role in shaping Queenslanders' understanding of themselves and each other.

The achievement being recognised may relate to any aspect of Queensland's social, political, economic and cultural life; and may take any form, occurring in any context, and extending over any period of time.

Listed below are the previous winners of the John Oxley Library Award.

2019 Recipient

Paul Lyons
Paul was recognised for his dedication to the recording and sharing of North Queensland news and history, and his efforts to preserve Townsville news archives. Paul was responsible for rescuing 40 years of North Queensland news and television history from a dumpster bin after the local television station was shut down. The longstanding cameraman and producer, then spent the next decade protecting the archive before finding it a permanent home within the local library.

2018 recipient

Ian Poole
Ian made significant contributions to Australian photography – not just as a Queensland photographer, but also as a teacher and mentor, writer, curator, a critic and judge, an aficionado of the art, and active participant in industry groups. In March 2011, Ian donated an archive of some 100,000 original negatives, colour transparencies, photographic prints and scrapbooks to the State Library of Queensland.

Blog: 2018 Queensland Memory Awards

2017 recipient

Dr Spencer Routh OAM
Awarded to Dr Spencer Routh OAM for his life-long contribution to the library and information sector.

2016 recipient

Kim Wilson
Awarded to Kim Wilson for her innovative work recording the history of local architecture and initiating and leading the Brisbane Art Deco Project.

Blog: 2016 Queensland Memory Awards

2015 recipients

Trevor Newman (joint winner)
Trevor Newman coordinates popular blog Your Brisbane: Past and Present ( Trevor's blog compiles valuable information about Brisbane's buildings, those we consider landmarks, as well as many others. It's a well written blog by a person who grew up in Brisbane. Trevor has been consistently nominated by Queensland Memory staff as a nominee for this award for the past few years.

Trisha Fielding (joint winner)
Trisha Fielding coordinates the equally popular blog North Queensland History ( Trisha also writes a weekly history column for the Townsville Bulletin and is a regular contributor to local ABC Radio. In 2010, Trisha published her first book, Flinders Street Townsville: A pictorial history, which was awarded a high commendation by the National Trust of Queensland and she received an award for writing at the Townsville Arts Awards. Trisha is an active member of local studies groups.

Blog: 2015 Queensland Memory Awards

2014 recipient

Richard Stringer has enjoyed a long and distinguished career as a photographer of Queensland’s landscape and architecture. For more than 40 years he has been an important advocate for preservation of Queensland heritage and has actively contributed to our historical record by documenting much of the now vanished built environment throughout the State.  He began life as an architect and this informs his practise as a photographer. As Queensland’s most prominent architectural photographer his work has been included in landmark publications and exhibitions.

Blog: 2014 Queensland Memory Awards

2013 recipient

In 2013, the Award went to author and journalist Matthew Condon for Three Crooked Kings, his recent investigative work into corruption in the era of former Police Commissioner Terry Lewis.  Matthew was also awarded in recognition of his ongoing contributions to the telling of Queensland stories both past and present, and his committment to bringing pertinent issues to the forefront of our state's social consciousness.

Blog: 2013 Queensland Memory Awards

2012 recipient

In 2012, filmmakers Sean Gilligan and Adrian Strong won the John Oxley Library Award for their documentary Fantome Island. The film tells the story of Joe Eggmolesse who was diagnosed with leprosy in 1945 at the age of seven. He was then taken from his family and incarcerated on Fantome Island, an isolated tropical island off the coast of North Queensland.

Blog: 2012 Queensland Memory Awards 2012

2011 recipient

The 2011 recipient of the John Oxley Library Award was Dr Ross Johnston. During a long and illustrious academic career at the University of Queensland, he was the author of many publications, among them ground-breaking works which pioneered local and regional history studies and inspired a generation of researchers.

He was a powerful advocate for the study and teaching of Queensland history in its own right and he remains heavily involved in studying and sharing Queensland and Australian history.

He has always been a strong supporter and contributor to Queensland history collections and has been a key member of the Queensland consultative committee for the Australian Dictionary of Biography.

Blog: 2011 State Library of Queensland Awards

2010 recipient

Professor Kay Saunders received the John Oxley Library Award in 2010 for her extensive body of research on Queensland history, and her important mentoring role to generations of students. Professor Saunders has spent many hours over several decades researching in the John Oxley Library, and is recognised as a pioneering female historian, particularly in the disciplines of gender and race studies in Queensland.

Blog: 2010 State Library of Queensland Awards 

2009 recipient

Dr Raymond Evans won the 2009 John Oxley Library Award for his outstanding work documenting the state’s past.

He taught for many years at the University of Queensland and is currently an adjunct professor in the Centre for Public Culture and Ideas at Griffith University. Professor Evans has been writing about Queensland and Australian history since 1965. His book, A History of Queensland (Cambridge University Press, 2007), was short-listed for the 2008 Prime Minister’s Literary Award for non-fiction.

2009 finalists - Chermside and Districts Historical Society Inc.
- Mr Andrew Stafford, author of Pig City: from the Saints to Savage Garden - Mr Erik Eriksen, researcher

2008 recipient

The Nambour Chronicle Digitisation Team received the John Oxley Library Award in 2008 for the development of an online version of the Nambour Chronicle from 1903–1955.

This fully searchable website ensures that the heritage of the area is more accessible to all in an innovative way, both now and into the future. The project provides an excellent example of collaboration between library staff of different Councils (Maroochy and Caloundra).

2008 finalists
- Remember When... Memories of Ipswich Project Team
- Thuringowa Branch, Citilibraries Townsville

2007 recipient

The Queensland Family History Society Publication Group was the 2007 recipient of the John Oxley Library Award.

This organisation received the Award for raising the profile of Queenslanders from all walks of life who have contributed to our history, not just the leaders in politics and business.