Hunter Lifesavers Recognised At Surf Life Saving Awards

A number of Hunter surf lifesavers have received top honours at the annual Surf Life Saving NSW Awards of Excellence proudly presented by Stramit Building Products on Saturday.

The Awards of Excellence acknowledge surf lifesavers from throughout NSW who have performed invaluable public service as lifesavers, administrators or trainers within the community.

Hunter lifesavers picked up awards for Trainer, Administrator, Junior Lifesaver, Community Education Program and Facilitator of the Year.

Kathryn Donnelly (Nobbys SLSC) was named the NSW Trainer of the Year. As the Chief Training Officer (CTO) at Nobbys Beach her preparation and delivery of education at her club, branch and with community education is of the highest standard.

Kathy was invited and presenter at the Surf Life Saving NSW CTO Conference in July. She is an integral member of her club and branch and is also heavily involved in the Surfing for Autism program. This year she was awarded her club’s ‘Committee Person of the Year’.

Kathy was speechless following her award and praised surf life saving for supporting her along the way.

"I honestly can't believe this, I'm completely shocked! We've had a huge year at Nobby's and as a trainer I'm involved with programs all throughout the year not just during the season and it's such an honour to be rocognised," said Kathy.

Maxine Cook (Tea Gardens Hawks Nest SLSC) was named the NSW Administrator of the Year. Maxine has demonstrated her competence as an administrator in her role as club registrar as well as being vital in Tea Gardens Hawks Nest SLSC achieving their Bronze, Silver and Gold level of the Quality Clubs program. The club is the only club in NSW to have achieved Gold status in the program.

Maxine helped instill compliance and governance programs and improvements to the club as well as undertaking the normal duties of her role which are extensive.

Surf Life Saving Hunter’s Asia Pacific Special Olympics Australian Beach Experience and Community Education Program was named the NSW Community Education Program of the Year.

The program involved athletes from 32 countries, 2500 participants and 5000 volunteers enjoying educational activities on Hunter beaches with the aim to improve access and awareness of surf life saving ideals for people with disabilities as well as culturally and linguistically diverse people.

Hunter Surf Life Saving also provided excellent community education programs to schools from as far away as the upper Hunter Valley as well as indigenous communities.

Debbie Booth (Tea Gardens Hawks Nest SLSC) was announced as the NSW Facilitator of the Year. Debbie has demonstrated her commitment and desire to foster the trainers and assessors in her branch through her involvement in organising and presentation of courses; creating a program that follows probationary candidates so that they are not lost in the system.

Debbie has initiated through Department of Education, the Bronze Medallion pathway course – life skills in the HSC. Her experience as a leader has extended to the commercial side of surf lifesaving through conduct of courses in the local primary schools.

Junior Female Lifesaver of the Year, Isabella Ferencz (Cooks Hill SLSC), received her award after being named earlier in the year at a Junior Lifesaver of the Year Development Camp in Sydney.

More than 280 of Surf Life Saving’s most outstanding lifesavers, athletes, coaches and administrators gathered to celebrate the enormous contribution of volunteers and clubs from across NSW for the 2014 SLSNSW Awards of Excellence proudly presented by Stramit Building Products.

For a full list of all the winners please visit the SLSNSW Awards of Excellence event page.

Sat 16 Aug 2014