Australia Day – Celebrating the Achievements of Everyday People

Australia Day Award Ceremonies have been held across the Whitsunday Region at Collinsville, Bowen and Cannonvale with awards being presented to 29 worthy recipients.

Acting Mayor John Collins said it is always a great honour to present Australia Day awards to our residents who represent excellence in our region and share a common commitment to the region.


“The winners and the nominees come from all walks of life and have excelled in different areas whether they be sporting achievements, working in community groups or being dedicated to a specific cause.”

“I would also like to thank the people who took the time to submit a nomination, without your efforts these awards would not be possible.”

The full list of the Whitsunday Region Australia Day Award Winners 2019 are as follows:


  • Citizen of the Year – Mr Keith Hiron (posthumous award)
  • Young Citizen of the Year – Mr Troy Simpson
  • Senior Citizen of the Year – Mrs Val Hiron
  • Senior Sports Award – No nominations received
  • Junior Sports Award – Mr Owen Williamson
  • Sports Administrator Award – Mrs Susan O’Louglin
  • Senior Cultural Award – Mr Brett Murphy
  • Junior Cultural Award – Miss Sarah Wilson
  • Community Event of the Year – Mt Coolon Christmas Party


  • Citizen of the Year – Mr Mark Inmon
  • Young Citizen of the Year – Miss Asha Lawrence
  • Senior Citizen of the Year – Mrs Fay Ryle
  • Senior Sports Award – Mr Darren Williams
  • Junior Sports Award – Mr Kieran Klaus
  • Sports Administrator Award – Mr Ross Meier
  • Senior Cultural Award – Ms Lani Stiles
  • Junior Cultural Award – Miss Hayley Smith
  • Community Event of the Year – Whitsunday Clipper – Rodeo by the Reef

Airlie Beach, Cannonvale, Proserpine & surrounds:

  • Citizen of the Year – Mrs Merewyn Wright
  • Young Citizen of the Year – Mr Darcy Larkin
  • Senior Citizen of the Year – Mr Roger Wodson
  • Senior Sports Award – Mr Mark McConkey
  • Junior Sports Award – Jy Parkinson
  • Sports Administrator Award – Mr Howard and Mrs Juanita Lawn
  • Senior Cultural Award – Mr Michael Patullo
  • Junior Cultural Award – Miss Porsha Hancock
  • Community Event of the Year – 2018 Great Australian Bites
  • Wally Hinschen Volunteer of the Year Award – Mr Mario Faletti