The inaugural Peter Woodgate Award

Inaugural Peter Woodgate Award winner Eva Rodriguez with Prof Pascal Perez of AURIN  Image credit: Alicia Smith

Last week AURIN had the great honour of presenting the inaugural Peter Woodgate Award at the geospatial industry’s Locate Conference.

For more than 30 years, Peter Woodgate has been a trailblazer and undisputed thought leader for the Space and Spatial Information industries in Australia. For the last five years, he was the Chair of our board and was instrumental in guiding AURIN through tumultuous times. He supported the executive team with unwavering enthusiasm, good humour, and an ambitious vision. It is a privilege to have created this award with the Geospatial Council of Australia to honour Peter’s memory.

The winner of the award, Eva Rodriguez Rodriguez, is a recognised emerging leader who embodies many of the qualities that Peter Woodgate cherished. She is driven, innovative, collaborative, respectful, and provides leadership through both action and guidance to other team members.

Selected along with 60 other Australian women to be part of the Superstars of STEM program, she is a recognised STEM champion having worked at the European Space Agency prior to migrating to Australia where she worked under Peter at the CRC-SI. Eva is also recognised as a diversity and inclusion champion, and is known for delivering whatever she undertakes exceptionally well.

Having spent much of her career to date in applied research with CRCSI, Frontier SI and SmartSat CRC, she is a proven innovator and is now applying that innovative pedigree to commercialise the work of innovators and researchers through targeted investment with Breakthrough Victoria.

“This award came as a total surprise and brought so many emotions—it made me extremely grateful for being part of the spatial community and recognised for my work, but also the weight it carries from being named after Peter who was a visionary, people leader, mentor and somebody I had the privilege to work very closely with, and who is greatly missed.

 I want to take the opportunity to share what I learned from Peter, including the importance of believing in people and showing pure conviction on their abilities, collaborating to achieve great things, the importance of listening, being respectful and kind, and to push for great ideas and persevere.” — Eva Rodriguez Rodriguez