Australia Day Community Citizen of the Year Awards 2024

Published on Monday, 29 January 2024 at 9:18:24 AM

On Australia Day we celebrate all the things we love about Australia: land, sense of fair go, lifestyle, democracy, the freedoms we enjoy but particularly our people.

Australia Day is about acknowledging the contribution every Australian makes to our contemporary and dynamic nation. 

Thank you to everyone who joined us at the Hopetoun Community Centre to celebrate the people in our community who go above and beyond.

In addition to the annual Community Citizen of the Year awards, this year the Shire of Ravensthorpe also bestowed the honorary title of Freeman of the Shire to a very special community member.

Honorary Freeman of the Shire - Chenda Goldfinch

The Honorary Freeman of the Shire title is the highest honour that our Council can bestow upon a local community member. A nomination to receive this honour must meet a strict criteria: the nominee must be someone who has served the community on a continuous basis for greater than 15 years in an outstanding manner and that stands above contributions of most other people in assisting in both the advancement of the Shire of Ravensthorpe and the provision of benefits for the greater community.

Richenda "Chenda" Goldfinch is a distinguished writer, artist, teacher and musician, who is recognised for her unwavering passion for both the arts and the environment in the community for the last 57 years. 

Her dedication to the Shire of Ravensthorpe and community has been exemplary and honouring her long serving commitment recognises her outstanding service to the community of the Shire of Ravensthorpe. 

An active member and contributor to a large number of local community groups who is always willing to volunteer her time and effort. To name just a few: 

Southern Scribes, CWA, Regional Arts Council, Jerdacuttup Community Association, Ravensthorpe Wildflower Show, Ravensthorpe Community Centre,

Ravensthorpe Historical Society, of special note was her involvement in the creation of the Kukenarup Reconciliation Memorial.  

Also announced on Australia Day: Chenda Goldfinch was recognised along with her husband Ian Goldfinch with an Order of Australia Medal. Read more here.

Community Citizen of the Year Award for 2024 -  Gavin Gibson

Gavin was recognised for his 38 year contribution to Ravensthorpe volunteer emergency service.

In 1985 immediately after leaving school, Gavin joined the Munglinup Bushfire Brigade to shadow and volunteer alongside his father Ron Gibson.

Gavin is the Deputy Chief Bushfire Control Officer for the Ravensthorpe Shire and is a Fire Control Officer for the Munglinup Bushfire Brigade. 

Active Citizenship Award for a Community Group or Event 2024 - Qualup Choir

The Qualup Choir formed some 30 years ago.

With 20 active members the choir performs at many local functions and events and provides a joyful contribution for positive change.

Senior Community Citizen of the Year 2024 - Rod Daw

In the world of firefighting, age is often seen as a barrier to active service. However, one individual challenges this notion by displaying unwavering dedication and relentless passion for his community.

Rod Daw, an exceptional fire officer at the age of 82, continuously proves that age is just a number when it comes to serving and protecting the region of Ravensthorpe.

Through his remarkable commitment, Rod not only ensures the safety of the community but also inspires both novice and veteran firefighters alike.

Australian Citizenship Ceremony


Congratulations to Hopetoun resident Mr David Blumberg who became an Australian citizen on Australia Day.




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