City of Bayside's 2014 Australia Day Award Winners

26 January 2014

Hundreds of Bayside residents and local dignitaries gathered at Bayside’s historic Black Rock House on Sunday 26 January for the 2014 Australia Day celebrations.

The celebrations commenced at 9.15am with a flag raising ceremony, followed by a ceremony where 60 people from some 15 countries became Australian citizens. 

The citizenship ceremony was followed by the announcement of Bayside’s prestigious Citizenship Awards and official proceedings concluded with a classic Aussie sausage sizzle.

Bayside’s 2014 Australia Day Ambassador was Ann Peacock, General Manager of Corporate and Public Relations at Crown, who was guest speaker at this year’s ceremony and performed the flag raising ceremony with Bayside Mayor Cr Laurence Evans.

Following are details of the winners of this year’s Bayside Australia Day Awards:

Bayside 2014 Citizen of the Year

Winner:  Pauline Reynolds. A Sandringham resident passionate about her community. 
Pauline is an outstanding leader and community advocate who for many years has worked for the protection and care of the Bayside environment. She has been a significant contributor to the Bayside community for many years and was nominated for just one of her many community initiatives – the annual Bayside Open Garden Day.

In 2002 Pauline had vision to give back to the community by organising an event to raise money for a local charity. She turned her vision into a reality by creating a Bayside Open Garden Day that generated $5,000 for the non-profit group, Family Life. 

This event is now a permanent feature of the Bayside calendar and has raised more than $200,000 for Family Life. 

It is supported by over 100 volunteers and attended by some 800 people every year.

Pauline is widely respected and has been described as a community champion who embodies the values of honesty, decency and community.

She is widely known for her hard work, tenacity and commitment.

Contact details:  9598 6368 or 0408 587 763

Bayside 2014 Young Citizen of the Year

Winner: Jessica Rogalsky an 18 year old student from Black Rock
Jessica is an active and tireless contributor to the welfare of Bayside youth with a strong commitment to improving activities and life experiences for young people in the community, in particular the improvement of services for young people.

A hearing impaired student who has encountered a myriad of challenges, she has just completed Year 12 at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart College and has been awarded a number of academic awards for excellence and effort including a Duke of Edinburgh Award.

She has been a member of the Kingston Council Youth Consulting Committee, has volunteered on Sundays preparing and serving food at Sacred Heart Mission and participated in National Youth Week.

Jessica is described as an excellent leader with a generous heart. She is an outstanding role model for our young citizens and is indeed a worthy recipient of the Bayside 2014 Young Citizen of the Year Award. 

Contact Details:  9589 1118 or 0448 009 452      

Bayside 2014 Community Event of the Year

Winner: A Cause to Run For:  Connor’s Run
Connor’s Run was established to commemorate the life of a wonderful 18 year old boy who passed away in April 2013 after a 16 month battle with a brain tumour.

The inaugural Run was held in September 2013 to recognise the strength, dignity and pride displayed by Connor Dawes as he fought his illness and to raise money for the newly established Robert Connor Dawes Fund.

The run followed the Sandringham to Yarra training course that Connor ran only 2 months prior to his diagnosis.  1750 people participated in the event with a further 250 supporters attending the finish line gathering.  It raised over $100,000 with 90% of the funds going into the Fund to be used for brain research, care and development.

The event was beyond anything that could have been envisaged and, according to Connor’s family, the sense of togetherness and warmth on the day of the run was overwhelming.

People are already training for the next Connor’s Run event.

The Dawes family described the event as bringing out the best of the human spirit and “showing that the brain is where the heart lives”. 

Contact details:   Liz Dawes (mother) Phone  9502 0999 or 0419 311 506.

Bayside 2014 Environment Award - Individual

Winner: Ray Lewis, former science officer, Cheltenham
Ray has been a motivating force in the Ricketts Point Marine Care group, helping to increase the group’s membership to 180.

For many years he has volunteered his time educating the community about the marine environment.  Aimed at motivating people to care for and preserve the foreshore and marine environments, Ray coordinates regular public meetings with speakers of interest on topics such as foreshore erosion, fossils and aboriginal history.  He writes numerous articles for magazines and newspapers, undertakes monitoring of the local water quality, publishes a quarterly marine newsletter and maintains a constant photographic record of local bay animals such as seals, dolphins, penguins and mutton birds.

Ray is also a regular speaker at local schools, Rotary gatherings and U3A classes.

There has been a major increase in public awareness of the Ricketts Point sanctuary and its value as a result of Ray’s motivating leadership, intelligence, knowledge and passion.

As a result of Ray’s voluntary effort, a benchmark of information has now been established on the marine sanctuary which is now being used to further research any change in the local marine environment.  He is an advocate for the establishment of a new education centre as part of the Beaumaris Yacht Club and mentors snorkelling and diving groups. 

Contact details:  Phone 9515 3788 or 0408 308 768

Bayside 2014 Environment Award – Organisation

Winner: Marine Care Ricketts Point
Marine Care Ricketts Point  is a volunteer group concerned with the well-being of the Ricketts Point Marine Sanctuary eco systems. It works in co-operation with the Sanctuary manager Parks Victoria, the Bayside City Council, and many other interested groups. It was formed on 21 January, 2003 and has 180 members.

Activities include mapping the sanctuary, monitoring marine life, photography, education, surveillance and compliance, inter-organisational activity, surveys, visits, social events and the natural and human history of the area.

The organisation recently established a Marine Education Centre which caters for a broad range of visitors but especially school groups.

The activities of the group has created a major increase in the awareness of the Ricketts Point marine sanctuary and foreshore area.

A great deal of credit went to the group’s dedication to the area after Ricketts Point won the 2013 Clean Beach Award in the Keep Australia Beautiful Victoria Sustainable Cities program.

Thanks to the dedication, passion and hard work of the Marine Care Ricketts Point volunteers, community pride in Ricketts Point has increased and the area has become increasingly popular with visitors from far and wide.

Contact details:  Phone Committee President Michael Coleman on 0467 000 110

Page last updated: 28 Jan 2014