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Region’s Best Recognised on Australia Day

The recipients of the 2018 Longreach Regional Council Australia Day Awards have been announced; and are as follows:


Community Event of the Year – Isisford Races

This event held in October, brings people together from all over the Central West and helps bring increased trade to businesses in the community.

Junior Achievement – Makybe Edwards

Makybe is often seen assisting her parents and friends with the fishing comp, P&C, School Mosaic, Golf Club and other activities. She was a School Leader in 2017 and has represented Isisford at the small schools athletics in Winton, going on to be selected at the Central West Championships to attend the Outback Sunset Carnival, where she came 3rd in the 200M.  

Volunteer of the Year – Lisa Littlewood

Lisa volunteers for the Isisford Golf Club, Isisford Race Club, Barcoo Fishing Club, Isisford Fire Brigade, annual Easter & Halloween celebrations, and at Australia’s Biggest Morning Tea.

Citizen of the Year – Doug Anderson

Doug arrived in the region in 2005 and has provided 12 years of dedicated service to the Yaraka community. He has been involved in the Yaraka Campdraft, Yaraka Sport & Progress Association and Yaraka Gymkhana Sub-Committee. He has also been a constant and active participant in Yaraka’s ANZAC Day commemorations. Sometimes it is easy to forget that he is in fact a law enforcement officer. He is a great example of ‘community policing’ at its best, and he has been recognised for his service with the Queensland and National Police Service Medals. In 2017 he was presented a Meritorious Service Medal by Commissioner Ian Stewart and his community could not be prouder for him.


Community Event of the Year – The Ilfracombe Picnic Races & Willowie Cup

Volunteer of the Year – Mark Tysoe

Mark volunteers countless hours in service to the community and has been a big part of almost every community celebration for many years. He is a selfless member of the Ilfracombe community playing a pivotal role in both the SES and Rural Fire Brigade.

Citizen of the Year – June Machin

June has been an active member of the Ilfracombe community for the past 40 years, always lending a hand whenever there is work to be done. She volunteers for the CWA, the Clay Target Club, the Race Committee, and various Ilfracombe/Isisford/Yaraka craft days. She helps make wreaths for ANZAC Day commemorations and has created a thriving garden at the Catholic Church – volunteering her time to tend to it daily.


Community Event of the Year – The Longreach Annual Fire Trials

In November of each year since 1924, the fire department competes in these trials designed to test various skills in timed events. The rapport built between fire fighters and the community by this event is enduring and was demonstrated in 2017; with a gearbox replacement undertaken on ‘The Dennis’ thanks to time and knowledge supplied by local tradespeople. The event also promotes fire safety awareness throughout the community, in particularly among young people. 

Community Group or Association Cultural Award – Longreach Landcare

Longreach Landcare had a busy year in 2017 holding information days and raising awareness at Westech, assisting landholders with cactus control, and coordinating a major clean up of the Thomson River covering 10km in 3 hours.

Cultural Achievement – Tracey Green

Tracey has been involved with the Longreach School of Dance in one form or another for ten years. Last year after taking on a new dance hall the school found itself without a teacher. Our recipient was adamant that this would not happen and with the support of modern technology overcame this obstacle.

Junior Sporting Achievement – Rhett Harris

Rhett is a naturally talented sportsman and champion for the underdog. In 2017 he was selected by one of the top clubs in the world, AC Milan, to attend a soccer training camp in Italy – where the rest his team was made up of players from the AC Milan Soccer school in Sydney. His dedication to the sport sees him travel extensively for coaching and development opportunities and has helped secure for our local club a coaching partnership with a club from the Gold Coast. 

Sporting Achievement – Christiaan Jacobie

Christiaan not only competes in Triathlons, he also represents Triathlon Queensland as a level 2 official and has worked several races as a referee. He recently focused on Ultra-Man events, which are more demanding and last three days. He often begins training at 2:00am and in 2017 he officially qualified to represent Australia in Canada at their Long Course event.

Citizen of the Year – Debbie O’Connor

Debbie flies under the radar most of the time despite having served the community for years. She doesn’t come from Longreach originally but her dedication to our children is inspiring. She is there for families when tragedy strikes and is a shoulder for both parents and students. She spends many weekends fundraising and goes above and beyond for her Longreach Kindergarten.