One of the unsung heroes of the South Burnett was rewarded for a lifetime of work by being named South Burnett Citizen of the Year at Kingaroy Town Hall on Sunday night.
Joan Adams was described by compere John Carey as a mix of “Jamie Oliver, Santa, Mother Teresa and a farmer”.
“She has lived in the South Burnett all her life and has risen above personal difficulties time and time again to make sure her beloved South Burnett is a better place for current and future generations,” John said.
Joan is involved in the organisation of the Tableland Markets and the Murgon Show, and is a member of the Proston QCWA, Tableland Hall Committee, Porcolettes and the South Burnett Wildlife Carers.
She also co-ordinated and cooked for three community dinners hosted at the Tablelands Hall for drought-affected farmers and prepared 26 Christmas cakes as a gift for farming families.
“Joan’s big heart for people sees her follow up those who remain vulnerable to withdrawing from community with home visits and helping wherever she can,” John said.
Joan was presented with her certificate by 2014 Citizen of the Year John Box and South Burnett Mayor Wayne Kratzmann.
The evening began with a Flag Parade by local Army Cadets and a Citizenship Ceremony for eight new Australian citizens.
The eight were led through their affirmation by Mayor Kratzmann who said he was honoured to be able to do this.
“Nothing is more important than to be given the role to be able to induct new Australian citizens,” he said.
Three former South Burnett mayors – Bill Roberts (Murgon), Percy Iszlaub (Wondai) and Reg McCallum (Nanango) – received special recognition at the awards ceremony.
“It’s time that we honoured three great Australians, three great Queenslanders and three great South Burnett civic leaders who have between them, as mayors and councillors, served a total of 108 years,” Mayor Kratzmann said.
Bill Roberts, who could not be present, was represented by his son Scott.
Cr Kratzmann said Bill was an “icon of Murgon”, while Reg McCallum was still known as the Mayor of Nanango.
Percy Iszlaub was an outstanding citizen who had worked behind the scenes “to bridge divides” in the community and was his “great mentor”.
The three men were given special plaques and received a standing ovation from the audience.
Australia Day is an opportunity for people to come together to celebrate and remember what it is that defines us.
“And to reflect on the achievements of so many, who day in day out, and all year long, selflessly serve their communities, motivated by a purpose greater than their own interests,” compere John Carey said.
“Through the South Burnett Australia Day Awards we can extend out our hands to thank and recognise that this region is filled with many, many people with very good hearts!
“I trust tonight that every nominee in these awards will draw deep from the appreciation and recognition of the region, and that it helps refuel your volunteer tanks to keep on serving your club, community and the South Burnett.”
Young Citizen of the Year is Lachlan Hughes, from Nanango. Lachlan is very active in the local community and is a former Nanango State High School captain.
This award recognises a South Burnett resident over the age of 60 who has given outstanding service to their local community over many years.
This award recognises a citizen who has made a noteworthy contribution through their volunteer work and who has given outstanding volunteer services to the local community over a number of years.
The South Burnett Cultural Award is presented to a person or organisation which has made a noteworthy contribution to the cultural life of the region or an outstanding achievement in cultural activities.
This award is presented to a person 18 years and younger who has made a noteworthy contribution to the cultural life of the region or an outstanding achievement in cultural activities.
This award recognises a South Burnett organisation that has made an outstanding contribution to the community during the year and has given outstanding service to the local community over a number of years.
The winner of the South Burnett Junior Sportsperson of the Year also receives the Matthew Hayden Bursary. This bursary is valued at $1000 and proudly funded by the South Burnett Regional Council.
This award is open to people over 18 years of age with an outstanding record of achievement.
This award is presented to an individual who has an outstanding record of achievement in sport.