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At the recent Surf Life Saving NSW Annual General Meeting, four long-serving volunteer lifesavers were elevated to the distinguished position of NSW Life Member.

Pambula’s Donald Hay and Maroubra’s George Shales were presented this honour alongside Peter Rowlands (Freshwater SLSC) and Jayne Morrison (Nambucca Heads SLSC).

Boasting over two hundred years of combined experience, the quartet has been recognised for their outstanding contribution to the movement as lifesavers, competitors, coaches, and administrators.

“It’s always a special occasion to be able to announce new Life Members, and I would like to acknowledge Don, George, Jayne, and Peter for their fantastic achievements during their time in Surf Life Saving,” said SLSNSW CEO Steven Pearce.

“On behalf of everyone in the movement we congratulate these outstanding surf lifesavers and welcome them as a deserved part of this exclusive club,” he said.  

SLSNSW 2018/19 Life Member Inductees

Donald Hay - (Pambula SLSC)

Pambula’s Donald Hay has been a significant contributor to Surf Life Saving for almost four decades.

After obtaining his Bronze Medallion in 1980 he served in many roles for his beloved club before taking on the reigns of President in 1994.

He would hold this position for 17 years straight, and again take on the role for a further two seasons in 2014.

Donald would play a key role in the push to build a new club house; a 14-year process during which time he would serve as project chairman, labourer, fundraiser, part-time project manager, and contractor liaison all while still performing his lifesaving roles.

He was a key lobbyist for placing a Support Operations Group on the Far South Coast with the first branch jetski based at Pambula from 2008.

Always keen to help his fellow surf lifesavers, Donald was a member of the Pambula call-out that assisted on the Bega River to help evacuees during the devastating Tathra bushfire earlier this year.

He achieved Life Member Status at Pambula SLSC in 1997 and for the Far South Coast Branch in 2008.  

George Shales - (Maroubra SLSC)

George Shales has been heavily involved in the movement since signing on for the first time as a member at North Bondi SLSC in the 1981 season.

After obtaining his Bronze Medallion in 1982, George would serve many roles including junior captain, assistant IRB captain, club vice-captain, assessor and patrol captain.

In 1995 he joined his current club Maroubra SLSC where he continued his involvement as an assessor and patrolling member.George is the holder of more than 80 surf awards and has been heavily involved in support operations through his time in the organisation.

At a branch level, George has contributed since 1986. During the last two decades he has been the Sydney Director of Lifesaving, Director of Administration and gear inspector among many other roles.

He is the current Surf Life Saving Sydney President with the branch enjoying plenty of success under his watch.

For his efforts he became a Branch Life Member in 2012.  

Jayne Morrison - (Nambucca Heads SLSC)

Jayne Morrison has been a patrolling member since 1980 and has made an incredible contribution to her club, Nambucca Heads and to the North Coast Branch during that time.

Due to a lack of patrolling members at her club, Jayne frequently patrols more than 100 hours as an active lifesaver each season and in the past, when time permits, has been a surf sport official at carnivals.

Jayne wears many hats at club level. Currently she is the Chief Training Officer/Registrar, Vice President and member officer. In between she manages all her duties as Director of Lifesaving for the North Coast Branch, a position she has held since 1997.

However Jayne’s great passion has been lifesaving and education and it has been in these two fields that many members have reaped the benefits of her years of dedication and experience.

Jayne was a member of the original SLSNSW Lifesaving and Education Board and takes an active interest in education, attends conferences and ensures that all clubs are familiar with changes to training processes and procedures.

For her outstanding efforts in Surf Life Saving, Jayne was made a Life Member of her club in 2002, and in 2013 was similarly honoured by the North Coast Branch.

Peter Rowlands – (Freshwater SLSC)

Peter Rowlands’ involvement in Surf Life Saving is rapidly approaching its 70th year. During that time he has made an impressive contribution across many areas.

His journey began as a member of North Bondi SLSC in 1949 where he would remain for the next 30 seasons.

During this time he spent a decade as the club gear steward which was a huge responsibility, was also elected to the management committee as a general member and rowed surf boats.

In 1979 he signed on at Freshwater SLSC where he continues to be involved at club, branch, state and national level and is generous with his time and knowledge.

One of his great passions has been March Past competition and for over two decades he has been involved as a coach, mentor and competitor during an era where his club has achieved much success.

Between 1990 and 2008 he was the organiser of the annual Freshwater Australia Day carnival and is an integral member of the NSW March Past Panel.

Since 2010 he has served as a member of the SLSNSW History Panel and has had a particular interest in ensuring that the large historic collection of photographs and documents is archived.

Peter, alongside the other members of the panel, threw themselves into the challenging task of researching the war records of thousands of surf lifesavers.

His knowledge and experience proved essential for this vital work to ensure that the legacy of surf lifesavers, and those who served in conflict, is preserved.

For his contribution to the movement Peter was awarded Life Membership at Freshwater SLSC in 1998 for Sydney Northern Beaches Branch in 2011.   

Donald Hay (Pambula SLSC) is one of four NSW Life Members announced earlier this month 

George Shales (right) celebrates with the Sydney Branch Team at the NSW Awards of Excellence in 2017

 Friday 9 November 2018