Residents ready to mark Australia Day

Strathbogie Shire residents will hear from inspiring, educational and motivational guest speakers at this year’s Australia Day ceremonies on Sunday January 26.

The townships of Avenel, Euroa, Longwood, Nagambie, Strathbogie and Violet Town will host the presentations of Australia Day Awards throughout the day, with a citizenship ceremony taking place in Euroa.

The Australia Day Awards acknowledge and celebrate the community service, contributions and achievements of local residents, while new residents will receive their citizenship.

Revered Australian cartoonist and writer Michael Leunig, whose political commentary spans more than 50 years, will address Avenel residents at this year’s ceremony.

His work regularly features in the Melbourne Age and the Sydney Morning Herald.

He is also a painter, philosopher and poet and describes his approach as regressive, humorous, messy, mystical, primal and vaudevillian.

Leunig is no stranger to North East Victoria, with the devout nature lover dividing his time between the region and Melbourne.

Emily Quattrocchi, who suffered a minor brain injury and was left with a T4 spinal injury following a car accident in 2018, will inspire Euroa residents as this year’s ambassador.

Before her accident, Emily was an avid cheerleader and despite her injuries she has worked extremely hard to recently be crowned a Nationals Cheerleading Champion.

Originally a Strathbogie Shire resident, she has made an inspirational documentary called “Emily … you never give up” and films weekly segments for her YouTube channel sharing updates of her life post her accident.

Longwood residents will learn of the adventure and exhilaration of being a coxswain for the Port Phillip Sea Pilot when Ivor Guest takes the stage on Australia Day.

The powerhouse was at the helm of the iconic orange pilotage boats from 1990 until his retirement in 2015.

He is a now a familiar face around Longwood, regularly visiting his daughter Shona and riding through the picturesque Strathbogie ranges.

One of the foremost experts on corporate leadership in Australia, Fabian Dattner, will be this year’s Nagambie Australia Day ambassador.

She has been synonymous for more than 20 years helping organisations throughout the country overhaul their leadership capacity including daring expeditions to Antarctica.

In Strathbogie, futurist, strategist and author Dr Peter Ellyard will provide insight into how communities, companies and individuals can develop successful pathways in the emerging 21st century global society.He chairs Foundation 2050 and is currently the chairman of the Preferred Futures Institute.

Violet Town will host one of its own community members Ro Allen, an experienced, passionate and longstanding advocate of LGBTIQ Victorians.

Ro has a deep understanding of the issues faced in rural and regional areas having been a member of government advisory boards, CEO of UnitingCare Cutting Edge as well as establishing the first rural support group for young LGBTI people.

Ro was appointed Victoria’s first Gender and Sexuality Commissioner in 2015.

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