The inaugural Phillip Law Medal has been awarded to the Australian Antarctic Division’s Dr Martin Riddle.

The award, convened by the Australian National Antarctic Research Expeditions (ANARE) Club, recognises an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to Antarctic affairs and the Antarctic community.

President of the ANARE Club, Ingrid McGaughey, said Dr Riddle’s scientific research and passion for protecting the Antarctic environment make him the ideal recipient of the first Medal.

“Since Dr Riddle started with the Australian Antarctic Division in 1994 he has worked tirelessly to raise awareness of the fragile and unique Antarctic environment,” Ms McGaughey said.

“His infectious enthusiasm for the polar region, as leader of Australia’s research program on human impacts in Antarctica and the sub-Antarctic islands, has been passed on to many students, scientists, media and the wider community.

“Dr Riddle has directly contributed to major advances in environmental understanding and management through guidelines and measures adopted throughout the Antarctic Treaty system.

“He is a highly respected and influential member of the Australian Antarctic program and a very worthy recipient of the inaugural Phillip Law medal,” she said.

The Phillip Law Medal is designed to be a prestigious and ongoing tribute to the Australian Antarctic pioneer.

It recognises the important work being done by individuals in Antarctica across a range of areas including science, technology, leadership, administration and environmental management.

The medal will be presented to Dr Riddle at the Phillip Law lecture in Hobart on the July 31.