Hicks receives New Zealand sport Lifetime Achievement Award

Carole Hicks received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Sport New Zealand at the nation’s Sport and Recreation Awards in Auckland on 29 May 2017. The awards recognise, highlight and celebrate the dedication of individuals, clubs, regional and national organisations in the sporting community. 

“The award was a total surprise. I had no idea I was up for any award, let alone one for lifetime achievement,” said Carole. “I thought the citation sounded a little familiar and by about the third sentence I was certain it was me they were talking about. I grew more and more embarrassed as others nearby also recognised it was me.”

“It was an enormous thrill to be included among so many outstanding contributors to New Zealand and, in many cases, world sport, who had been similarly honoured over the years. In some way it was made even more special when I learned that the nomination was from Sport New Zealand itself.”

The recipients of the Lifetime Achievement Award are chosen for the immeasurable amount of time, energy and passion they have sacrifices throughout their incredible careers.

“As I commented during the presentation, archery in New Zealand is a collective, volunteer organisation and in fact many of my friends around the world, especially in para archery, are also volunteers, which makes all we do so special,” Carole added.

Carole was dragged along to an archery session by a friend who was keen to try the sport in 1972.

She admits feeling a sense of boredom upon first impression, rather than excitement, however after giving archery a proper go, Hicks was hooked. As well as shooting herself, she has held multiple positions within Archery New Zealand. 

Beginning as a club volunteer, she then became a national judge – and, by 1988, had stopped participating as an archer because she had too many administrative roles to find time for practice. When Australia held the World Archery Championships in Canberra in 1977, the New Zealander volunteered to help run the event. This was the start of her international activity.

When the worlds returned to Australia – in Adelaide – 10 years later, in 1987, she became an international judge and from 1993 onwards, was manager of the New Zealand team for every World Archery Championships, except 2003 when she was chair of the international judges in New York, until 2015.

In 2006, she became a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to archery. 

At international tournaments, Carole met people from all around the world, and her international judge’s status led to other opportunities including election to the constitution and rules committee.

A few years later, para archery moved away from the International Paralympic Committee and was absorbed into World Archery. Hicks was elected onto the inaugural para archery committee, more recently becoming its chairperson.

She was awarded with World Archery's Volunteer of the Year Award in 2015 for her commitment to the development of para archery, driving the integration of the discipline into international competition and the growing support for the discipline in and outside of the archery world.