NZOIA Outdoor Excellence Awards
NZOIA Chair Gemma Parkin said Mr Groothuizen had achieved some outstanding feats at a relatively young age and the award recognized his unwavering adventurous spirit and patience.
“To say Tom’s life has been an adventure would be an understatement. He has biked 50,000 km across the full length of the Americas, Africa and Asia, has kayaked down the Danube River – a staggering 2,850 km – and hiked the full length of Mongolia.
“We are so impressed by Tom’s attitude and enthusiasm. He is smart and keen to learn, putting in a huge number of hours outside of work, including building his own kayaks during periods of COVID-19 lockdown in Auckland. He is also incredibly committed to sustainability, always including beach cleans on his school tours.
“Tom’s passion for the ocean, unique perspectives and dedication to providing fantastic experiences for the people he takes into the outdoors are just some of the reasons he is the deserved winner of this year’s Emerging Guide award,” Ms Parkin said.
The NZOIA Outdoor Excellence Awards are held annually to recognise the highest achievements of individuals involved in outdoor recreation, education and guiding in New Zealand.
The awards ceremony was held digitally due to Covid-19 restrictions. Here is his acceptance speech.