Residents, friends, family and visitors celebrated everything that’s great about living in Australia at this year’s Federation Council Australia Day celebrations. A record breaking crowd of more than 200 people were joined by Australia Day Ambassador Ange Clarke, Uncle Doser Atkinson and Federation Council representatives to participate in festivities at Club Mulwala on January 26.
Angle Clarke, who has been an advocate and champion for inclusive communities for over 25 years delivered an inspirational address to the crowd, and spoke about the charity that she founded, alongside her son Will ‘Where there’s a Will’.
Ange reminded us all to be more empathetic and caring towards those of us who face challenges. The highlight of the day was a joint performance between the Rivereens, Uncle Doser Aitkinson on the didgereidoo and the entire crowd in attendance coming together to sing ‘I Am You Are We Are Australian’.
In his welcome address, Federation Council Mayor Pat Bourke said each year Australia Day provides us with a day to reflect on what it means to be Australian, to celebrate contemporary Australia and to acknowledge our history. “On Australia Day we celebrate all the things we love about Australia; land, sense of fair go, lifestyle, democracy, the freedoms we enjoy, and particularly our people,” he said.
“Today we celebrate our people, the people of Federation Council who go above and beyond in their respective areas to ensure our communities thrive and grow. Our nominees are very special people, whose donation of time and effort warrants this type of special celebration.
Mayor Bourke said he felt privileged to honour the commitment and achievements of outstanding individuals in the Federation community.
“This is what today is all about – acknowledging our local residents who have made positive contributions to the lives of others, without asking for anything in return,” he said.
“It is a chance to celebrate the traits of humility, service, courage and selfless generosity that characterizs so many great Federation Council residents.”
Council would like to congratulate all the award recipients and nominees for the 2023 Federation Council Australia Day Awards.
*2023 Citizen of the Year: Leeanne Dalitz.
Leeanne is the go-to person in Oaklands. For over 30 years she has been instigating and organising so much of what happens in Oaklands. Leeanne has been involved with Oaklands Pre-school, Oaklands Central School P & C Committee, Oaklands Junior Cricket Club, Oaklands Cricket Club organising Pink Stumps Day, Billabong Crows Football and Netball Club and before that Oaklands Netball Club, Oaklands RSL & Bowling & Community Club, Oaklands Town Improvement, Oaklands Truck Show, Oaklands Camel Races, 1st Oaklands Scouts Group, Oaklands Harvest Ball, Oaklands Hall committee, and the Oaklands Fire Brigade.
*2023 Young Citizen of the Year: Chantelle Gorman.
Chantelle Gorman is well known for her community involvement; her enthusiasm and the confidence people have that she will be there if needed.
Chantelle is a member of the Savernake School of Arts Hall Committee, Savernake Fire Brigade, Oaklands Harvest Ball Committee, Oaklands Gym Committee, and the Berrigan Show Society.
*2023 Community Project of the Year: Urana Progress Association.
The Urana Progress Association is a 355 Committee of Council consisting of local volunteers who give many hours to enhance the town of Urana and encourage visitors to the area. They curate the displays and man the Urana Courthouse Museum. Care for the birds and maintain the Urana Bird Aviary. Host annual events and workshops such as the Urana Art Exhibition and Sale, and Urana Bird Sale. Assist people to research their family history. Along with host regular morning teas and social outings, and provide a safe place for people to come and have a friendly chat and be listened to.
*2023 Local Achiever of the Year Awards: Bethany Robinson of Mulwala, Chantelle Gorman of Savernake, Jan McKenna of Corowa, Julie Bartlett of Balldale and Leeanne Dalitz of Oaklands.
*2023 Student Achievement Awards Winners:
Boree Creek: Kiara Reed and Ruby Routley.
Corowa High School: Ashley Moore and Carter Reid.
Corowa Public School: Lachlan Douglas and Lilyana Murray-Wright.
Howlong Public School: Campbell Steers and Koby Shepherd.
South Corowa Public School: Ruby Baseden and James Carter.
Oaklands Central School: Annabelle Sandral and Hunter Bell.
Rand Public School: Isaac Kreutzberger and Tahlia Emmerton.
St. Mary’s Primary School: Harry Norman and Mollie Thomas.
Urana Public School: Hunter Bell – Eva Butler and Melissa Smith.
Council would like to sincerely thank Uncle Dozer Atkinson, Australia Day Ambassador, Ange Clarke, Judy McNamara, Penny Reeves and the Rivereens, as well as ClubMulwala for hosting the event. Congratulations is also extended to Council’s six new citizens – Mrs Deborah Rowe, Ms Kimberly Feliciano, Mr Brincely Madlambayan, Master Wilfer Madlambayan, Ms Tin Aung Thein and Ms Lakshmi sai Yalamanchili, who all participated in a special citizenship ceremony to officially become Australians on this proud day.