News / Community / 28th January 2021
Joint winners announced for Citizen of the Year award
The Warrumbungle Shire Council Australia Day awards started with a glorious morning at Len Guy Park in Binnaway.
Ambassador for the northern region, Sonia Gandhi, inspired the crowd by sharing the story of her experience as a migrant to Australia from India and the importance of volunteers in making her feel accepted and part of the country.
“The spirit of volunteering is so ingrained in Australians,” Mrs Gandhi said.
“Thank you to the volunteers - your selfless contribution to your communities exemplifies what it means to be Australian.”
Warrumbungle Shire Council mayor, Cr Ambrose Doolan, joined Mrs Gandhi to present awards to the Binnaway recipients.
This year’s Citizen of the Year Award went to not one, but two active community members - Jim Larkin, from Binnaway, and Carol Richard, from Coolah.
Mr Larkin was recognised for his contribution to the community as a volunteer for the Binnaway Show Society and Binnaway Tennis Club.
During his time as treasurer of the show committee, Mr Larkin has played a key role in securing around $250,000 worth of grants to upgrade facilities at theshowground.
“Jim has overseen the construction and contract management for the grants as well as taking the lead on reporting on progress to state and federal governments,” Cr Doolan said.
“Jim helps wherever he sees a need whether it is catering, cleaning, organising volunteer working bees or undertaking maintenance and repairs.
“The hours Jim has dedicated to advancing his community are truly staggering.”
In his acceptance speech, Mr Larkin acknowledged the community for their role in supporting the showground team in achieving their goals.
“Thank you to the community for getting behind us and voting for the new horse sports yards,” Mr Larkin said.
“Also to the local and regional businesses who have been so incredibly generous in supporting us throughout the drought and the pandemic.
“And the fantastic team of volunteers and many individuals who have generously contributed to our infrastructure improvements, thank you.”
The Binnaway celebrations concluded with a delicious breakfast supplied by the Binnaway Men’s Shed.