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It’s been a successful season in the hot seat for Cudgen Headland’s Jenny Kenny, who has held senior officiating roles at Branch, State, and National level throughout the 2017/18 season.

Last weekend she was acknowledged for her outstanding dedication and professionalism by being crowned the Australian 2018 Surf Sport Official of the Year at the Surf Life Saving Australia Awards of Excellence in Sydney.

Her achievement comes two months after she received the same honour at the NSW Awards and caps a successful season on the beach for the passionate volunteer.

“What attracted me to the role of an official is the opportunity to contribute to the event experience of the athlete and spectators.

“My aim like all officials is for the competition to run smoothly and I operate on the philosophy on the importance of good open communication,” Ms Kenny said.

Some of the roles she performed this season include Chief Judge, Open Male Area Referee, Deputy Carnival Referee and Carnival Referee at Branch, State (both the NSW and QLD) and National Championships.

Arguably her season highlight was becoming the first woman to be appointed as referee of the Australian Interstate Championships in South Australia earlier this year, a role that she will again perform in 2019 when the Championship event heads to Newport on Sydney’s Northern Beaches.

In additions to her achievements as an active official, Jenny plays a key role as a mentor, and has provided advice and feedback on developing a senior official’s course.

“I really enjoy giving back and acting as a mentor to emerging officials, and while this program is open to everyone I have a real passion of working with the women.

“Sometimes it feels that they don’t always apply for roles that they are more than qualified to do and I want to encourage them and to help them see that there is a genuine pathway for them in surf sport officiating,” she said.

The influence of Jenny Kenny will continue to be felt far beyond the beach and this is a deserved award for someone who plays a key role in ensuring surf sport events everywhere continue to run smoothly.

Jenny Kenny was crowned Australia's top surf sport offcial. She is pictured here with NSW Surf Sport Director Donald van Keimpema in August at the SLSNSW Awards of Excellence at Dockside, Cocklebay. 


Tuesday 30 October 2018