Recognising outstanding community members
There are many selfless people in Randwick who help improve the lives of others and make our City a better place to live. These quiet achievers often go unrecognised yet they contribute to our shared vision of a harmonious, strong and successful community.
The Randwick City Council Community Service Awards pay tribute to these outstanding community members and encourage others to follow their lead.
The Community Service Awards are in three categories:
- Australia Day Community Service Award (Individual) - to be eligible, the nominee must already be 25 years or older on 26 January of the Awards year.
- Australia Day Community Service Award (Group) - only one group will be chosen as the recipient of this award.
- Australia Day Young Citizen of the Year Award - to be eligible, the person must be 16 to 24 years old on on 26 January of the Awards year.
- Individual recipients of the Community Service Awards will each receive a special medallion and a certificate in recognition of their outstanding contribution to Randwick City.
- The recipient of the Community Service Group Award will receive a single medallion and a framed certificate.
- Recipients of the Young Achiever Award will each receive a framed certificate.
The annual ceremony honouring the Community Service Award recipients and welcoming new Citizens was held on Australia Day under a COVIDSafe plan for a limited number of invited guests at the Prince Henry Centre.
Congratulations to the winners of the 2021 Community Service Awards.
Assisted by the Australian Government through the National Australia Day Council
2021 Community Service Award winners
Professor Mark Ferson (Mayor's Award)
His team of unsung heroes have been at the forefront of controlling cases during the COVID-19 pandemic. His team at South Eastern Sydney Local Health District of Epidemiologists, Covid tracers and hardworking Covid contact staff are the reason NSW has been at the forefront of controlling this virus. This team are true professionals that have worked tirelessly to keep us safe.
Mark Halcro (Individual Award)
Mark Halcro was holidaying at Lake Conjola in December 2019 with many from the Randwick Community. As the fires approached it was too late for many to leave the area so they were forced onto the beach to avoid the flames. Mark showed enormous bravery and selflessness by saving local community members through the complete darkness and burning embers.
Randwick Offshore Rescue Boat Service (Group Award)
Randwick Surf Rescue 30 Operating from its base at Malabar since 1969, the Service is dedicated to the prevention of aquatic related injury and drowning along the spectacular but rugged Randwick coastline. The Service is a charitable organisation that delivers lifesaving search and rescue, lifesaving services, water safety education and initiatives through training programs.
Brenna Harding (Youth Award)
Brenna has worked tirelessly for her local community since childhood. She began advocating for same-sex parented families after appearing in an episode of playschool. At 12 years old she spoke at the same-sex adoption enquiry at NSW Parliament House. Throughout high school she was a core team member of youth-led anti-homophobia organisation Wear it Purple, for which she now sits on the board. In 2015 she founded Moonlight Feminists, whose purpose was to empower young women to be change makers in their environments and provide peer support and solidarity to young women who had experienced sexual assault.
For further information about these awards please contact the Community Development Team on 1300 722 542 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
2020 Community Service Award winners
Mathew Harper (Mayor’s award)
Mathew has been a highly valued member of Maroubra Surf Life Saving Club for 15 years. He currently holds the positions of Patrol and Club Captain, Captain of Surf Rescue 30 and is an integral part of training and assessment, development camps. He was named NSW Surf Lifesaver of the Year in 2019. Earlier this year he volunteered to go to the fire-ravaged south coast as part of the SLSNSW emergency response team to assist with evacuations.
Patricia Brander (Individual award)
Patricia has been a part of the Chifley Public School community for over 40 years. Known affectionately as ‘Nanna’, she volunteers her time twice a week to assist with school reading with students. Using humour, kindness and no-nonsense approach, Patricia or ‘Nanna' has played a significant role in encouraging many generations of students to read. Patricia has made a lasting impression with her students and has created connections through active listening; encouragement and instilling self-belief.
Tony Vecellio (Individual award)
Tony has run the little athletics program at Hensley Athletics Field since 1968 producing many champions and creating an inclusive atmosphere bringing families together. All members are made to feel welcomed and treated with respect. Tony advocates for living a healthy and active lifestyle, and further encouraging all forms of achievement and accomplishments.
Marcos Molina (Individual award)
Marcos has dedicated his time to beach volleyball and has helped train and develop both children and adults over the past 25 years. He has committed himself to training and teaching skills by primarily volunteering his time on weekends and after school throughout the week. Greeted by a smile as always, Marcos is continually stopped along the Coogee promenade by parents who have had their children trained by him or adults who have been trained by Marcos themselves.
Ted Hayes & Betty Delatorre (Joint individual award)
Ted and Betty have been an integral part of the Friends of the La Perouse Museum for the past six years. They are always willing to provide their time to help committee members and the broader communities of Randwick.
Marissa Ely (Individual award)
Marissa Ely is a leading figure in the Maroubra community. Her Maroubra Community Facebook page has over 12,000 members who Marissa keeps up to date with all things happening such as: sport events, road changes, local politician updates, charity events and much more. Described by her colleagues and peers as inspirational and remarkable, Marissa excels in business, community spirit and promoting Autism awareness.
Coogee Meditation Group (Group award)
Established in 2012 the Coogee Meditation group has been offering drop in guided meditation classes twice weekly by donation. The Coogee meditation group has been able to connect a diverse range of residents amongst the Coogee and Randwick areas. Participants include parents, healthcare professionals, students, small business owners, retiree's and those who are new to the area as well as people recovering from illness.
David Lee (Youth award)
David is a volunteer and team member of the UNSW Table Tennis Club since 2017. He has demonstrated an advanced understanding of table tennis and a genuine drive to create an inclusive, safe, fair and enjoyable environment for all players. David’s highlights include umpiring and other volunteering roles at the Club, whilst fitting in study with his high school commitments.