Seven Northlanders are among the finalists of the 2014 Pride of New Zealand awards.
Pride of New Zealand, sponsored by APN newspapers such as the Northern Advocate and the Whangarei Report, as well as TRN radio station The Hits and TSB Bank, aims to recognise Kiwis who have done something extraordinary to help others. The awards sparked a huge 693 nominations, including more than 50 from Northland.
Regional winners were announced this morning, with seven Northlanders listed in the top three in the Northern region across the categories Bravery/Heroism, Community Spirit, Fundraiser of the Year Award, Emergency Services, Environment, and Lifetime Achievement.
Judging panels for the regional finalists included NZ Herald editor Shayne Currie, environmental champion and winemaker Peter Yealands, Silver Fern Maria Tutaia, TRN's The Hits' Polly Gillespie, and Jo Cowie, director of fundraising at Starship.
Whangarei's Buddhi Wilcox is a finalist in the Community Spirit section, along with Moerewa's Albert Barber and Thelma Horne.
Kaeo's Judy Donaldson and Kerri-Rae Herbert are finalists in the Bravery/Heroism section.
Whangarei's Todd Hamilton and Sue Shepherd are finalists in the Environment and Lifetime Achievement sections respectively.
Winners of the regional awards for the Northern Region will be named at a function in Auckland on August 4. From those regional winners, the overall national winners will then be selected.
The national awards will be judged by broadcaster Judy Bailey, Victoria Cross holder Corporal Willie Apiata, TSB Bank CEO Kevin Murphy and APN New Zealand CEO Jane Hastings.
From Monday, August 11, voting in the TSB Bank's People's Choice Award opens, with winners in that section plus the six overall categories being announced at the national final in Auckland on September 10.