The best and brightest from the Southern Downs community will be honoured in a new-look Australia Day awards format in 2019. After the presentation of the inaugural Southern Downs Citizen of the Year award  in 2018, 2019 will see the introduction of the Southern Downs Youth Citizen of the Year.

The new format will see Southern Downs Regional Council support local community service groups to host community-based Australia Day events with awards for worthy local community members. Council has opened nominations for Southern Downs Citizen of the Year and Southern Downs Youth Citizen of the Year and winners will be announced in the lead up to Australia Day 2019.

Southern Downs Mayor Tracy Dobie encouraged residents to nominate anyone they felt deserving of the regional accolade. “This could be someone who has dedicated themselves to the running of their local organisation, group or sporting club,” Cr Dobie said. “Maybe it’s someone who makes a real difference within the community, whether directly to other’s lives, environmental care, charitable work or anything where their contribution deserves recognition. We all know the Southern Downs produces outstanding sportsmen and women, perhaps our Citizen of the Year or Youth Citizen of the Year could be someone who stands head and shoulders above in their chosen sport, or could even be someone who is moulding local champions through their coaching and mentoring.”

Cr Dobie said the awards deserved serious consideration. “There are many wonderful and hard-working people within our community, many whose good deeds and efforts go largely unsung,” she said.

Council will also run citizenship ceremonies in Warwick and Stanthorpe on 26 January 2019 for those residents who are becoming new Australians. Nomination forms can be found on the SDRC homepage or at either of Council’s offices in Warwick and Stanthorpe. Nominations will close at 5pm on Friday 30 November 2018.

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