2006 - Australia Day Winners

Major Award – Citizen of the Year

Mavis Thompson

The demonstrated commitment displayed by Mrs Mavis Thompson of Churchill has paved the way for her receiving the Latrobe City 2006 Australia Day Citizen of the Year Award.

Mavis was nominated for her dedicated commitment to numerous community organisations and her concern and interest within our community through her tireless volunteering efforts.
From her hometown of Ballarat, Mavis arrived in the Latrobe Valley as a young married woman soon after the end of WW2, where she and her husband farmed at Hazelwood North, raising three children.

In 1958 Mavis joined and became an extremely active and dedicated member of the Australian Red Cross organisation.  She was involved in the Hazelwood North and Morwell Units, and for a number of years was Regional Chairman of the North Gippsland Region leading her region through a number of significant changes.  

Mavis is currently the Chairperson and Secretary of the Morwell and District Red Cross, involved with the Red Cross Shop in Traralgon and still coordinating Red Cross Calling.

In recognition of her services to the Australian Red Cross, Mavis received the Division’s Service Award in 1989 and in 1996 was awarded the Australian Distinguished Service Award at Government House.

In 1984 Mavis became a volunteer at ‘LISC’ - the Latrobe Information & Support Centre in Morwell, taking on executive positions on the Committee of Management over the past 21 years.  She is still a dedicated member of the organisation, where her sense of compassion and understanding for the disadvantaged is greatly appreciated.
Included in her significant contribution to the community –

Mavis is also Secretary of the Central Gippsland Branch of the National Council of Women of Victoria.
She is a member of Probus
A volunteer with Lifeline Gippsland - since 1984, and
Continues to play the piano at her local Uniting Church

Mavis is a person dedicated to the welfare of the citizens of Latrobe City and merits the public recognition that comes from a civic award.
Mavis’ commitment to the community continues to this day and Latrobe City is very proud to acknowledge such a selfless citizen and congratulates Mavis on receiving this great honour.

Major Award – Young Citizen of the Year

Alison Teychenne

Ms Alison Teychenne, is a 23 year old Music Teacher from Traralgon and is being honoured with the Latrobe City 2006 Australia Day Young Citizen of the Year Award.

Firstly as a professional Music Teacher and then in a voluntary capacity as Musical Director of the Francis Orchestra, Alison is nominated for her dedicated service to the community as a mentor, volunteer and leader, making an enormous contribution to the musical and cultural life of the Latrobe Valley.

Following her education at Kosciusko Street Primary School and Lavalla College Traralgon, Alison graduated from the Melbourne University Conservatorium of Music as a highly skilled Clarinet player, receiving her Degree in Music and then her Teacher qualifications.

Through her dedicated work as a teacher and mentor, she has given numerous children and young adults excellent opportunities in music development.

Alison is a very active member of the community and some of her significant contributions include her being a regular volunteer player for musical productions by the West Gippsland Theatre Company and the Latrobe Theatre Company.  She has also taken on the role of Assistant Musical Director of the Latrobe City Youth Band

Alison dedicates herself to encouraging others in the wonderful world of music and has demonstrated her exceptional leadership skills, evident in her ability to rebuild the Francis Orchestra, both in the number of players and in their successful performance levels.

Latrobe City is very pleased to honour this amazing young achiever, who is to be commended on receiving this Civic Award.

Major Award – Community Event of the Year

5th Annual Gippsland Motorcyclist Christmas Toy Run 2004

 This outstanding event is being recognised as the Latrobe City 2006 Australia Day Community Event of the Year.

The 5th Annual Gippsland Motorcyclists Christmas Toy Run was coordinated by three local Motorcycle Clubs involving the dedication and commitment of the Gippsland Central Branch of the Ulysses Club, Us and Them Tourers and Eastern Riders Gippsland.

The Christmas Toy Run was first held five years ago involving 75 bikes and has since gone from strength to strength, now attracting 500 motorbikes with more than 700 riders and pillions participating. 

Prior to the Toy Run non perishable food was collected from the Primary Schools of Kosciusko Street Traralgon, Yallourn North and Newborough.

In a joint operation involving the cooperation of the motorcycle fraternity, local government, police, corporate and small businesses and the general public, the procession of 500 bikes travelled through the CBDs of Traralgon, Morwell, Newborough and Moe, finishing at the Moe Race Course.

 An official Handover Ceremony was held for the presentation of toys and goods to the Salvation Army and the St. Vincent de Paul Society.  These two organisations were responsible for the distribution of the goods throughout Latrobe City. 

The Motorcyclists raised a gross amount of $42,000 in monies and goods, and the event was declared the biggest single effort to support needy families in Gippsland.  A total of 1,000 Christmas hampers were distributed to 1,000 families within Latrobe City by the Salvation Army and the St. Vincent de Paul Society.   

The success of this event is evident in the result, and we as a community are very privileged to have such a wonderful Latrobe wide celebration, emphasising our City’s links.

Latrobe City Award – Citizen of the Year

Kathleen Kneebone

She is recognised for her invaluable contribution and dedicated commitment towards helping disadvantaged citizens in our community.

Running a private practice in Psychology and not withstanding Kathleen’s wide involvement in community activities, she maintains a kind and generous attitude to all and is willing to accept any challenge, going out of her way to assist those who cannot help themselves.

Some of Kathleen’s other significant contributions include her dedicated volunteer involvement with :-

Aboriginal groups and individuals
Disadvantaged adults and children
Helping at allocated Schools
Phone Counselling, and
Helping isolated clients. 

Latrobe City Award – Citizen of the Year

Eugen Reichardt

Eugen is being recognised for his dedicated commitment to helping those in need in our community over the last 30 years and for his involvement wildlife conservation.

His ongoing involvement with various organisations such as the Wirilda Project Association and the Australian Deer Association benefits the responsible management of wildlife; conservation; recreation and safety education in the use of firearms. 

Eugen’s skills as a caterer was often called upon to help raise funds for community projects and is always ready to ‘put his hand up’ when assistant has been requested to help charities.

Latrobe City Award – Citizen of the Year

Harvey Pynt

Harvey is nominated for his dedicated contribution and involvement with the Royal Exchange Hotel Cork Club and for his volunteer commitment towards helping raise funds for the Royal Children’s Hospital.

President of the Royal Children’s Hospital Cork Club for the last 15 years, Harvey has helped to raise over $1 million for the Royal Children’s Hospital, through various fundraising events.

Harvey’s contribution to the community is recognised for his active involvement as President of the Traralgon Chamber of Commerce, a member of the Traralgon Lions and is on the committee for the soon to be constructed, Soundshell in Victory Park, Traralgon.

Latrobe City Award – Citizen of the Year

Elizabeth (Betty) Foley

Betty is being recognised for her many years of volunteer and selfless contribution to the Yallourn North Senior Citizens Club and Yallourn North community organisations.

Betty’s commitment and dedicated service to the Yallourn North community includes her involvement with the Bowling Club, Neighbourhood Watch, the Historical Society, the Uniting Church, the Tennis Club, the Yallourn North Advisory Group, and the former Yallourn North Badminton Club.

Held in high esteem and described as a most efficient, sincere and thoughtful person, Betty is to be commended for her community volunteer work. 

Latrobe City Award – Citizen of the Year

Bianco Pezzutto

Bianca is being recognised for her dedicated service and commitment to community health and wellbeing for her involvement as a committee member and fundraiser with The Cancer Council Victoria – Latrobe Valley Relay for Life, and Anglicare Gippsland.

Through Bianca’s dedicated volunteer work, she was involved with the organisation of :-

The Latrobe Valley Relay for Life – raising $46,500 in 2004
Daffodil Day
Pink Ribbon Day
Shave for a Cure
Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea.
Bianca’s involvement with Anglicare included the

-  ‘Kids Biz’ after school care and holiday program

-   The Latrobe Valley Rights Centre

-   A Community Outreach Worker, and

Working with children with special needs.

Latrobe City Award – Citizen of the Year

Peter Bennett

Peter is being recognised for his dedication and outstanding contribution to the Twin City Archers Gippsland Club, where he has held the position of President for the past 12 years, and is Vice President of Archery Victoria.

His leadership, drive and vision have lifted the profile and respect of the Twin City Archers, evident in the Club obtaining two State Shoots a year and securing the 2006 National Australian Titles.

In addition to a busy family, working and sporting life, Peter still finds time to help and contribute to the community and is to be commended for his dedicated volunteer involvement with adults and children with a disability.

-    Peter’s care and concern shown for those in need, indicates his value as a citizen of this City.

Latrobe City Award – Citizen of the Year

Norma Thompson

Norma is being recognised for her volunteer contribution to the Latrobe Valley community in her dedicated involvement with the Salvation Army.

Contributing in many ways to the Salvation Army through her voluntary work, Norma is involved with hospital visits, fundraising every Friday night and spends 2-3 days a week interviewing and ascertaining the needs of clients who require welfare.

Norma’s community involvement includes the Salvation Army-Morwell Corps, the Traralgon Corps, the Community Care visitations and the Salvation Army Women’s Groups.

A very caring an devoted lady and being on availability call 24 hours a day, Norma will always go out of her way to assist others in need.

Latrobe City Award – Citizen of the Year

David Pitburn

David is being recognised for his dedicated commitment and volunteer contribution to the citizens of the Latrobe Valley community through his many years of involvement with Music Theatre, and for the successful establishment of the Youth Theatre Company - Class Act Productions.

David worked for many years in Education and has lead many cultural exchange tours to Japan.  He was inspirational in the development of the Latrobe City Youth Band and was Tour Leader for the band’s tour of Japan and China.

David is a person who continually shows incredible generosity, always willing to give of himself both personally and artistically.   He is to be commended for his volunteer involvement and congratulated for his excellent work in the promotion of drama and the arts with young people.

Latrobe City Award – Young Citizen of the Year

Peta Mullens

Peta is 17 years of age and is nominated for her demonstrated and dedicated commitment to the sport of Cycling.

She is a member of the Latrobe City Cycling Club and currently attends the Victorian Institute of Sport in Melbourne.

Even though the sport demands a high level of dedication, and Peta’s aim is to achieve her personal best, she has still been able to complete her schooling.

Peta is an exceptional athlete and an excellent role model for the promotion of her chosen sport.    She has demonstrated her leadership skills by representing the Victorian Institute of Sport through such activities as being a spokesperson visiting schools at Warragul.

Some of Peta’s significant achievements include numerous Victorian Triathlon  and Australian Track Championships, with Silver and Gold in the Victorian and National Time Trials.

Latrobe City Award – Young Citizen of the Year

James Ibrahim

A high motivated 18 year old student, James is recognised for his excellence in academic achievements, family dedication and community involvement.

Demonstrating above average academic skills at the young age of 16, and successfully completing his VCE studies in Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematical Methods and English, James has recently completed his second year of a five year Batchelor of Medicine and Surgery.

Whilst receiving numerous Awards and Distinctions for academic achievements, James is involved within the community as a volunteer for groups such as :-

WILDFIRE –  “Working in Leading Development for Indigenous and Rural Education”.  The group supports rural students studying medical, pharmacy, psychology and nursing.
Australians for Native Title & Reconciliation Victoria
St. John’s Ambulance.

Latrobe City Award – Young Citizen of the Year

Josephine Ibrahim

Josie is a 19 year old student highly focused on achieving her potential. She is also being recognised for her academic excellence and for her service to the local and wider community of Latrobe.

Josie’s life is saturated with many Awards and Achievements and after completing her VCE at 16 years of age, she was awarded the Federation Health’s “Bright Futures Scholarship which has led to her currently studying her Batchelor of Pharmacy at Monash University Clayton.  After embarking on her tertiary studies, Josie won the University’s Pro Vice Chancellor’s Letter of Commendation for excellent study results.

Josie’s contribution to the community included her taking on Sunday School teaching at her church.  She completed a Volunteer Training Program at the Emergency Department of the Latrobe Regional Hospital; and through her current Faculty of Pharmacy at Monash University, she established a Rural Health Club to increase awareness of, and promote rural and remote health.

Latrobe City Award – Community Event of the Year

26th Tyers Art Festival

The Tyers Art Festival committee are to be congratulated for their dedication and hard work for the staging of the 26th Tyers Art Festival, which incorporates the Tyers Children’s Art Award.

It was an event that provided a high quality exhibition for the artists and a significant cultural and community event for Tyers and the wider region of Latrobe City.

The Festival was an excellent example of how the spirit of a community can be lifted and united together providing an opportunity to showcase a variety of incredible local talent.

The volunteer committee of the Tyers Art Festival worked tirelessly to ensure the success of the Festival, which ensured a great family event that catered for all ages.

Latrobe City Award – Community Event of the Year

Making Tracks Exhibition - Celebrating 150 years of the Victorian Railways

The Making Tracks Exhibition was a major exhibition of Victoria's railway history developed by the Royal Historical Society of Victoria that travelled state-wide to celebrate 150 years since the first line was opened between Melbourne and its port. 

The exhibition consisted of two parts – the official travelling exhibition and the local Gippsland exhibition held in Traralgon, which included panels of railway history, with a special panel prepared locally to feature stories, events and pictures from Gippsland’s remarkable history of railways in the region.

The Gippsland Historical Societies, The Gippsland Model Engineering Association and the Latrobe Valley Model Train Association and dedicated volunteer members of the community are to be congratulated for the enormous amount of planning and preparation that was involved in making the event the success it was.

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