Thursday, February 15, 2024


Mackay and Whitsunday Life

Community Spirit Celebrated At Australia Day Awards Ceremony

The recipients of the 2024 Australia Day Awards were proudly announced by Burdekin Shire Council at a rescheduled ceremony on Monday, February 12, recognising the outstanding achievements and contributions of individuals and groups in the community.

L-R Burdekin Shire Council Deputy Mayor Sue Perry, Mayor Lyn McLaughlin, Burdekin Citizen of the Year 2024 John Woods and Councillors John Furnell and Kaylee Boccalatte. Photo supplied: Burdekin Shire Council

Australia Day Awardees Announced

Australia Day Awardees Announced

The Burdekin community gathered at Burdekin Memorial Hall on Monday, February 12 to recognise the outstanding contributions of individuals at Burdekin Shire Council’s Australia Day Awards Ceremony.

Burdekin Shire Council Chief Executive Officer Terry Brennan said the Australia Day Awards serve as a commendable event each year to recognise and celebrate the exceptional contributions, achievements, and selflessness of individuals in our community.

“I want to commend all Australia Day Award nominees for being nominated by their peers for their dedication in their relevant areas, and especially congratulate all winners for their significant contribution to our community,” Mr Brennan said.

The 2024 Citizen of the Year Award was presented to John Woods who has a significant history in his volunteering efforts throughout the entire community.

John has volunteered for and held vital roles in organisations including Home Hill Kindergarten, Burdekin Singers, Queensland Cancer Council Home Hill, Burdekin Meals on Wheels, Home Hill Primary School P&C, Home Hill State High School, Burdekin Junior Eisteddfod, St Helen’s Church, Home Hill Harvest Festival, and the Home Hill Choral Society.

From 1982 to 1994 John was a Councillor for Burdekin Shire Council and served as the first Shire Mayor for 10 years from 1994.

The 2024 Young Citizen of the Year Award went to Eddie Jones, a young leader and role model who has been involved in the Burdekin Shire Youth Council (BSYC) for six years.

Eddie’s involvement in the Burdekin Shire Youth Council displays a proactive approach to staying informed about local events and actively participating in community initiatives.

Eddie has also volunteered for many community organisations, such as Meals on Wheels, Lions Club and Rotary Club.

The 2023 Australia Day Awards also included the announcement of Volunteer, Cultural, Sporting and Event Awards.

Four individuals, Xiaoxia Li, Mohammadhashem Samiraninazhad, Karen Sullivan and Judith Wilson, were also granted Australian citizenship on the night as part of the Burdekin Shire Council’s Citizenship Ceremony.

Burdekin Shire Council’s 2024 Australia Day Award Recipients:

Citizen of the Year: John Woods

Young Citizen of the Year: Eddie Jones

Young Citizen of the Year Achievement Award: Emily Holmes

Young Citizen of the Year Achievement Award: Martina Bojack

Community Event of the Year: Jeffrey Lunn & Leon McCormack – 2023 Community Lights Display

Community Event of the Year Achievement Award: Millaroo Social Club – Cathrine Britt’s Bush Pubs Tour 2023

Volunteer of the Year:  Leanne Gudge

Lifetime of Service Gold Award: Charlie Barbagallo

Lifetime of Service Bronze Award: Leanne Gudge, Gary Edwards, Shirley Chard, Robin Blundell

Senior Cultural Award: Irene Richards

Junior Cultural Award: Emily Holmes

Junior Sportsperson of the Year: Ky Mitchell

Caption 1: Awardees and new citizens were recognised at the Burdekin Shire Council Australia Day Awards and Citizenship Ceremony on Monday. Photo supplied: Burdekin Shire Council

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