Jerilderie Australia Day

Australia Day Awards 2024 Recipients - Jerilderie

Joan has made an outstanding contribution to the Jerilderie community over a lifetime, with involvement in various community organisations, including:
  • St Vincent De Paul Society’s Jerilderie team
  • Jerilderie Men’s Shed, where she provides great support for the members, including regular and much appreciated morning teas
  • Jerilderie Life Ball
  • Jerilderie Tidy Towns 
  • Jerilderie Hospital Auxiliary
  • Jerilderie Red Cross
  • Jerilderie District Race Club
Her peers speak of her ability to work and play alongside others, generating a positive environment and promoting team spirit, with her many qualities motivating others.  She leads by example and inspires and encourages us to make our own contribution to creating a better community. She is an amazing and hard-working lady, a wonderful ambassador for Jerilderie, and a very deserving winner of the 2024 Citizen of the Year Award.

Recognising the need to support the youth of the community, Trevor took on the role as coach to a team of junior footballers. His ability to communicate, respect and value the contributions of each and every member of the team should be an example for many coaches to learn from.  This team of young players, under his guidance, built friendships and displayed great sportsmanship and behaviour both on and off the field, whilst they improved on, or learned, the skills needed to play AFL. The highlight of his 2023 coaching was to see this group of predominantly young players win the premiership flag in the Under 14’s Picola League grand final. During the season, and in spite of a heavy workload on game day, he played seconds football, to ensure that the Club could field a team. Trevor achievements are inspirational for taking up the challenge to work with the youth in our community, teaching them about sportsmanship, respect and life skills.

The Award sees one pupil from both St Joseph’s Primary School and Jerilderie Public School being selected on merit for their contributions. 

St Joseph’s Primary School – WILLIAM MAYNARD

William is a kind and thoughtful student, considerate of his peers and a great friend and support to the younger students of the school. In the classroom, he applies himself diligently to his learning, and is very persistent in his sporting endeavours. He actively participates in all aspects of school life, and is involved in the School Music Programme, where he has honed his skills as a very impressive trumpet player. Outside of school, he is involved in the Jerilderie Football Club. He has shown on many occasions, through his actions, that he is a very worthy recipient of the Little Aussie Award.


This student is cheerful and friendly, always displaying exemplary manners and behaviour. She contributes to the positive atmosphere of the classroom through her consistent co-operation and participation in all Key Learning Areas.  She is a conscientious student who displays a confident attitude to learning, and is honest and trustworthy in her dealings with others. In 2023, she was captain of Jerilderie Public School, taking those leadership responsibilities seriously and performing her duties with maturity and sound judgement.  She is a very well-liked member of the school community, relating well to her peers, and is appreciative of different perspectives and experiences.

Australia Day Awards 2023 Recipients

Citizen of the Year: Carina Rorato
Outstanding contribution to the Jerilderie community over a number of years, through volunteer and professional roles. Her involvement as a volunteer in various community organisations includes support for Jerilderie Preschool Kindergarten’s Management Committee and Long Day Care Subcommittee, St Joseph’s Primary School Social and Fundraising Committee, Jerilderie Netball Club and Jerilderie Swimming Club.
Of significant note was her enormous contribution to the establishment of the Jerilderie Early Learning Centre, an important community project with a positive purpose and a measurable benefit for the local area.
This project commenced in 2016 and was completed 6 years later, in October 2022, with our citizen being the only community member involved in the project from inception to completion. This major project saw 100s of hours of volunteer time dedicated to grant writing, community engagement, meetings with stakeholders, planning, design and fit out of the centre, staff recruitment and governance.

Professionally, she is a passionate advocate for children, their wellbeing, social experiences and educational opportunities, and is keen to advance both her personal and professional growth.
She is passionate about improving local social and educational experiences and is always looking for ways to better our community.

Sportsperson of the Year: Fiona Baxter
Fiona recognises the need to support the community through access to health, fitness and wellbeing classes and has undertaken considerable training to provide these opportunities to people of all ages and abilities. Her regular classes at the Jerilderie Community Gym offer significant positive social experiences, and allow participants to stay fit and active. As Secretary of the Jerilderie Community Gym Committee since its inception approximately 7 years ago, she has assisted with registering the gym as a not-for-profit entity, which allowed the Committee to secure funding for much-needed gym equipment. A former coach and player of the Jerilderie Netball Club, and an A-grade best and fairest winner, she has also assisted the Jerilderie Football and Netball Clubs with pre-season training.

Little Aussie Awards:
  • Zavier Rorato, St Joseph’s Primary School
  • Stella Williams, Jerilderie Public School

Australia Day Award Recipients 2022

Citizen of the Year: Carmen Lawton
Carmen has shown an outstanding commitment to the Jerilderie community over many years, contributing as a volunteer with Jerilderie Swim Club, Jerilderie Netball Club, Jerilderie Football Club, Jerilderie Pre School, Jerilderie Tennis Club and Jerilderie Cricket Club. Carmen is passionate about the education of children and has been actively involved in raising funds to provide students and teachers at Jerilderie Public School with better resources and amenities. Events have included the recent Open Gardens Day, sheep sales and local functions catering.  Carmen is the current Treasurer of the Finley High School P&C, a member of their Executive Committee and canteen convenor. The Jerilderie Netball Club has benefitted greatly from Carmen’s abilities, where she has worked tirelessly to contribute to the Club’s success over 15 years.  As a mum of three sporting sons, Carmen has volunteered at many sporting events, including athletics and swimming carnivals. When the Swimming Club was looking for a new coach, Carmen undertook Auswim coaching and stepped up to the role of Club coach, a position she held for some 10 years. This position involved teaching children to swim, coaching and administration of the Club, holding the position of President. All testimonials provided in support of Carmen, speak of her generosity and her capacity to organise people and events, while generating a positive environment and promoting team spirit. Carmen is a selfless person, who not only invests heavily in her town and community, but is generous in giving of her time to assist her family and friends.

Young Citizen: Rory Knight
Rory completed his year 12 studies at Finley High School in 2021, demonstrating outstanding leadership skills in his roles as Vice-Captain and a member of the Student Representative Council.  Rory stepped up to lead fundraising events and wellbeing activities to support both students and staff during what was a very difficult year. He proved himself an exceptional role model for other, standing out as a mentor and leader for the younger students of the school. He has achieved very good results in his year 12 studies. Away from school, Rory is involved in community sport. He has been a member of the Jerilderie Football Club for 10 years, and during this time has captained and co-captained two junior premiership teams, as well as coaching and taking on extra duties. Rory is a member of the Jerilderie Cricket Club senior side, playing in the Murray Valley Cricket Association. His willingness to volunteer for training and game day tasks is commendable. He is community minded and always ready to do his bit.

Sports Team of the Year: Jerilderie Bowls Pennant Team of the 2020-21 season
The Pennant team competed in and won division 2 in the Murray Bowls Competition, which involves eight teams in Northern Victoria and Southern NSW.  To the team’s great credit, they were also successful in the competition in 2019-20, with a division 2 win. The members of the pennant team work with the Sports Club and the community, running a barefoot bowls evening competition and school clinics, and supporting various annual events,  including Royal Children’s Hospital Good Friday Appeal and Motor Neurone Disease fundraiser. They welcome players from all ages and abilities and are very happy to introduce new players to the game. The 2020/21 Jerilderie Bowls Pennant Team: Players: Terry McGee, Faith Bryce, John Bryce, Colin Bryce, Betty Conn, Bill Williams, Ken Dallas, Terry Chaplin, Mary Catena, Lucy Gurciullo, Michael Pitt and Mark Baldwin. Emergencies: Kathleen Williams and Lucy Sweeney

Little Aussie Awards (nominated by the schools):

  1. Ruby Neessen (St Joseph’s Primary School): Ruby is a kind and thoughtful student, considerate of her peers and a great role model, friend and support to the younger students of St Joseph’s. She enthusiastically participates in all aspects of school life, diligently applying herself to her classroom learning and placing high expectations on herself. Ruby displays great determination and persistence in her sporting endeavours. In 2021, she was awarded the Jerilderie Netball Club Junior Club Person Award because of her wonderful sportsmanship, skills and volunteering. She also enjoys physie culture, and has competed at state and local levels. Ruby is a quiet achiever who is making a big impact in our community.
  2. Zara Williams (Jerilderie Public School): Zara is friendly, supportive person that is an excellent role model to all students.  She has an awareness of others, and will always invite students to join with her, involving them in groups and activities. Her approach to life is no fuss, calm and positive, and she shares her easy going attitude with those around her. School Principal, Nyree Taylor, notes that Zara has diligently carried out her duties as School Captain, and has maintained her classwork to a very high standard throughout her primary years.   

Australia Day 2021

  • Citizen of the Year: Bill Ferris
  • Young Citizen: Aron Birch
  • Sportsperson of the Year: Chelsea Winn
  • Little Aussie Awards (nominated by the schools): Kizzi Moore (St Joseph’s Primary School) and Logan Eldridge (Jerilderie Public School)

Australia Day 2020

  • Citizens of the Year: The Wednesday Group: Elaine Forbes, Joan Kuschert, Anne Hardie and Joan Atkinson
  • Young Citizen: Ben Neessen
  • Sportsperson of the Year: Chelsea Winn
  • Little Aussie Awards (nominated by the schools): Lachlan Wells (St Joseph’s Primary School) and Dan Eldridge (Jerilderie Public School)
  • Posthumous Patron of Jerilderie Australia Day Committee - Ian Sneddon

Pictured (L-R) are the 2020 Citizens of the Year, The Wednesday Group Elaine Forbes, Joan Kuschert, Anne Hardie, Joan Atkinson

Pictured: Ben Neessen making his acceptance speech.

Australia Day 2019
  • Citizen of the Year - Joy Knight 
  • Young Citizen of the Year - Mitchell A'Vard 
  • Sportsperson of the Year - Sienna Burke 
  • Little Aussie of the Year (St Jospeh's Primary School) - Chloe Rorato 
  • Little Aussie of the Year (Jerilderie Public School) - Abbey A'Vard

Jerilderie Australia Day Award Recipients: From Left: Citizen of the Year, Joy Knight, Little Aussie's of the Year, Chloe Rorato and Abbey A'vard, Murrumbidgee Council Mayor, Councillor Ruth McRae, Young Citizen of the Year, Mitchell A'vard, and Sportsperson of the Year, Sienna Burke

Australia Day 2018

  • Citizen of the Year - Sadie Herrick
  • Sportsperson of the Year - John Purcell
  • Little Aussie of the Year - Jerilderie Public School - Lucy Simpson and St Joseph's Primary School - Mia Neessen

Left to right: Mia Neessen, Lucy Simpson, Cr Ruth McRae, Sadie Herrick, John Purcell

Related Pages

Australia Day Awards

Murrumbidgee Council proudly takes part in the annual Australia Day ceremonies in Jerilderie, Darlington Point and Coleambally.

Coleambally Australia Day

The Coleambally Australia Day Committee organise an Australia Day celebration which includes the presentation of various awards to recognise the tremendous contributions of individuals and groups in the community.

Darlington Point Australia Day

Murrumbidgee Council and the Darlington Point Town Life Committee organise a great celebration for Australia Day, which includes a BBQ and the presentation of Australia Day Awards.