Gabe Reynaud Award Recipients

2019

Filmmaker Pr Wes Tolhurst received the Gabe Reynaud Award in 2019 for following a high-risk calling from pastor of the Written to the Created Word of God. As a photographer, he had won awards and been published in magazines before pursuing a career in pastoral ministry. But a call to make nature documentaries inspired Tolhurst to forgo a salary and begin a creativity-based small business. Tolhurst Creative is now not just an individual but a team that has served more than 100 clients. Its largest project: a 10-part Following Jesus: Multiplying Disciples and Following the Spirit: Multiplying Churches video series for the Adventist Church in the South Pacific, shot in Jordan, Israel and Turkey. It is currently producing a series on domestic violence for the City of Gold Coast and a Wild Hearts YouTube channel featuring Tolhurst’s sons Byron and Finn. The latter starred in a viral home video Tolhurst shot to promote a beekeeping enterprise.

2018

Rod and Zan Long received the Gabe Reynaud Award in 2018 for sharing their creativity in children’s ministry and production locally and internationally. As longtime members of Kellyville Seventh-day Adventist Church in suburban Sydney, the Longs have led and supported key ministries, including those focused on worship, multimedia, young adults and children. In 2012, the Longs attended the One project gathering in Seattle (Washington, USA), a milestone in their journey of faith. They wanted to share the experience with their local church and with the church in Australia. Led by the Long family, the first Australian gathering of the One project convened later that year, which led to eight more across Australia and two in New Zealand. As well as its focus on the centrality of Jesus in the Adventist Church, the One project demonstrated excellence in production and presentation. Rod became a member of the One project’s leadership team while Zan noticed the absence of a program for children and developed TOP Kids.

2017

Pr Daron Pratt and Melissa Otto received the Gabe Reynaud Award in 2017. Pratt is the first denominational employee—he is Director of Family and Children’s Ministries for the Seventh-day Adventist Church in northern New South Wales—and Otto the first solo singer/songwriter named as recipients.

Pratt receives the award for his use of Facebook to promote the value of ministering to children and families. He creates content—often posts expressing an opinion that may challenge the denomination or championing children’s ministries creatives and leaders—and curates content—often from outside Adventism. He uses his influence to increase the reach of other’s posts. And he is an early adopter of the social media and social networking service’s new features.

Otto receives the award for her long-term commitment to full-time music ministry. The Novocastrian released her first EP, Patio, at age 20. Three albums—Opened (2007), Blue Sky (2011) and The Journey Home (2014)—have followed over the past 13 years, the most recent supported by a six-month tour of the United States. Donations and sales not only helped Otto and husband Jason Hinze—and their two young daughters—cover their costs but invest in their ministry.

2015

Jeremy Dixon received the Gabe Reynaud Award in 2015. Dixon’s journey as a faithful creative began when he quit his job to start the Revive Cafe in central Auckland. The entrepreneur is now the publisher of four vegetarian cookbooks that have sold 110,000 copies in just three years.

2014

A clown received the Gabe Reynaud Award in 2014! Graeme Frauenfelder is a storyteller and a trainer who “opens hearts, inspires kindness and awakens creativity.” But he is best known as a clown, particularly at community-building festivals coordinated by Christians at the past summer Olympics. He regularly travels the world to enrich the lives of others. Graeme’s philosophical approach and sophisticated intentionality to the practice of creativity is impressive. But what’s more impressive about Graeme: he’s persisted without privilege, often without funding or institutional support, and he’s consistent, pouring creativity into his personal relationships and daily interactions with people.

2013

The interactive, outdoor drama Road to Bethlehem received the Gabe Reynaud Award in 2013. Road to Bethlehem began in 1995 as a ministry of Nunawading Seventh-day Adventist Church in Victoria. Now, with the support of Seventh-day Adventist Church in Victoria, 400 people volunteer to stage the event, which attracts crowds of 15,000. The City of Whitehorse recognised Road to Bethlehem’s role in building community by nominating it for an Australia Day Community Achievement Award in 2003. Road to Bethlehem has spawned four other Road to Bethlehems—in Dakabin Park, Queensland; in Erina, New South Wales; in Livingston, Western Australia; and in Tauranga, New Zealand.

2012

Academic, composer and writer Dr Robert Wolfgramm received the Gabe Reynaud Award in 2012. Robert pioneered contemporary Christian music in Melbourne, Australia, during the counterculture movement of the 1970s. He co-wrote three musicals and co-founded Galilee Records. He now serves as editor-in-chief of the Fiji Daily Postand of the New Fijian Translation Bible.

2011

Artist Joanna Darby received the Gabe Reynaud Award in 2011 for creating a unique blend of art and ministry. Her visual work has artistic integrity and outstanding quality. Her verbal art is innovative, refreshing, powerful and moving. Both overflow with a passion for communicating the love of Christ, delivered with humility and compassion. She has combined her visual and verbal creativity into a ministry that reaches into churches, schools and community groups.