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Our quiet achievers were recognised on Wednesday, 31 August 2016 at the 10th annual Citizen and Young Achiever Awards in Waihi.

The annual awards ceremony acknowledges the service of Hauraki residents who have committed substantial personal time and effort to benefit their community, and our high achieving local 13 to 25-year-olds making a mark in their communities.

Citizen Awards

This year’s Citizen Award recipients included volunteers who have made a difference through event coordination, community publications, social and health work, services to children and young people, celebrating local heritage, sport, and club roles, to name just a few ways.

Lorraine Hayward

Associated with Hauraki Plains community all her life
53 years of service

Coaching    Fundraising

St Pascal Parish Catholic Women’s League

Hauraki Plains Historical Society

Haurakian Charitable Trust

School Productions
Maori Culture Group

Cheryl Harris

Member of Patetonga Kaihere Playcentre for 45 years

mother     supervisor     pre-school teacher

Second generation of playcentre children

When the position of supervisor became paid, most of the years her wage has been left in the Centre for day-to-day running ‘Don’t worry about paying me- keep it for the children.’

‘How she gently encourages and brings out interest and talent in our small children – and their mothers – is truly wonderful to see.’

Brian Atger 

HELP Waihi 1997-2016 
School representative
Finance Committee
Mr Fixit

Waihi Lions
Member for over 30 years
President twice
Published Bulletin for many years
Chaired Book Fair Committee

Hetherington House
Management Committee last three years
Currently Deputy Chairman

Frances Flaherty 

This person spent time on the Waikino Hall Committee and Waikino Liaison Committee. With Helen Wilson she revived the ‘Waikino Whisper’. With Simone Warne and Maggie Read she helped set up the inaugural Waikino Garden Ramble to raise money for the new hall at Waikino School.

After an article she wrote was published in the NZ Gardener, she hosted a busload of visitors to her garden. Waihi Lions has now taken over the annual Garden Ramble, and this year Waihi St John will benefit from the proceeds.

She has been in St John Ambulance for six years. In this time she has set up and led Pet Outreach Therapy at Hetherington House and Waihi Hospital.

To raise money for the new Ambulance Station she was co-opted to lead what has proved to be a very successful Op Shop, and also an Art Auction. She will shortly be invested as a member of St John.

Judith Cotton 

Waihi Information Centre
‘A long term volunteer in the original Information Centre.’

Waihi Walking Group
‘Her dedication and organisation of the group is admirable … She is tireless in ensuring that the exercise is a happy experience, and everyone’s welfare is very important to her.’

Hauraki Hussies
‘An enthusiastic leader who works to bring women together to mix, mingle, and laugh.’

Jane Robinson

Ngatea Playcentre Life member

Co-operating Parish Church
Choir, Sunday School, Parish Councillor, Trust Sub-Committee, Music & Movement

Historical Society Of Hauraki Plains
Interviewer, Photographer, Researcher, Cataloguer

Plains Profile
A Quietly Industrious Contributor

Ngatea Swimming Club
Coach, Timekeeper, Judge, Recorder

Kerepehi Brass Band
A Valued Member Of The Organisation

Valerie Wallis

Active member of the Whiritoa community for 18 years

Original member of the Whiritoa Hall Committee

Run ‘Whiritoa Tidings’

Head Librarian at Whiritoa Library

‘Whatever she has done in the community, she has done an excellent job.’

Valerie Sparks

Involved in Paeroa Volunteer Drivers since it started

Secretary, Treasurer and Co-ordinator for Community Bus

Church Elder

Active member of Paeroa Co-operating Parish

Life is better when you are happy …
but best when people are happy because of you.

Leslie Gordon  

Actively involved in several community organisations over many years

‘Time and drive are uppermost in describing her dedication.’

‘Her interest, drive and measured approach are valued.’

‘We have been fortunate to have her support.’

St John
Life Education Trust

Instigator    Organiser



Left-Right: Lesley Gordon, Brian Atger, Lorraine Hayward, Cheryl Harris, Valerie Wallis, Jane Robinson, Judith Cotton, Frances Flaherty, Valerie Sparks, Mayor John Tregidga. 

Young Achievers

Our Young Achievers have led the way in academics, the sporting arena, arts and culture, social initiatives, leadership and community spirit.

Adam Keane

Ngatea Volunteer Fire Brigade

North Rugby Club B team member

Plays for ‘Stick Men’ hockey team

About to complete Level 4 Ag ITO course

Begun Qualified Firefighters Programme

‘He is a very keen and active member of all of these groups and an asset to each of them.’

Gus Barrier

Head boy

Talented athlete

Senior athletics & cross country champ
Record holder for 3000m
Won numerous events at Thames Valley
Waikato & Bay of Plenty events
1 XV Captain
Rep rugby player at Valley level

Cross Country
6km road race

‘He leads from the front; he has a tremendous work ethic and likes to roll up his sleeves and get the job done. As a student leader he is motivated by the relentless pursuit of excellence and the desire to leave a legacy.’

Alyssa Thurston

This person has demonstrated great community spirit and leadership.

Along with Adrienne Erasmus who was nominated last year, this person ran the local Dance Studio while still at school.

She has spent her time coaching, cheerleading, and last year was our Deputy Head Girl.

She received a Merit Endorsement in NCEA Level 3 and is a fantastic community member.’

Bianca O'Conner

This person is a hard working conscientious young lady whose determination and will has allowed her to achieve many successes in her life. Despite having severe dyslexia she has continually worked hard to gain her Level 1 and Level 2 NCEA qualifications and is well on her way to also obtaining Level 3. This has been no easy feat, but she has succeeded due to a high degree of perseverance and resilience.

She is a member of Girl Guides and recently gained her Queen’s Guide Award. This is the highest possible award in Girl Guiding and comes after four years of hard work. In order to obtain this award she had to show a high degree of initiative, reliability and responsibility. Gaining this award shows she is highly aware of her
responsibilities to her family, her community, and society as a whole.

Crystal Scown

Focussed and ambitious
Outgoing personality

Excellent leadership qualities

Actively involved in Young Handlers

1st New Zealand Dairy Event (Intermediate)
3rd Overall North Island Champion

Merit Endorsement Level 1

1st Easter Show (14-21 year-olds)
1st Northern Wairoa A&P Show
2nd Morrinsville Handler
2nd Tokoroa A&P Show
2nd Warkworth A&P Show
3rd Franklin A&P Show
3rd Te Aroha A&P Show

Duncan Piesse

Bachelor of Engineering (Hons) Top 10%
Highly skilled
great communication skills
true asset to our company

Active member of LandSar

‘It is rare to have a young man so well rounded in so many facets who is both an asset to our company and our district.’

Ezra Thompson

Ezra is an outstanding role model, leader, and community minded individual.

He is the Cultural Leader of the College. He lead and planned the Ball, Lip Synch, and many other activities.

Ezra has volunteered his time to help throughout his school career. He has been involved in the tour band and has also played in other groups while at College.

He is seen as a mentor and a leader among his peers.

Hugh Budge 

NCEA Levels 1 & 2 with Merit

Captain of 1 XI football team
Regional rep for Waikato/BOP

On track to achieve Level 3

Represented College in Jiading Chinese Exchange

Volunteer with Paeroa Carehouse and Carehouse OSCAR Holiday programmes

Major involvement in planning and organizing two Intercultural Leadership conferences

Team Leader at Paeroa/Te Aroha Youth Camp

‘At a time when it is increasingly difficult to get volunteers this person flies in the face of this and demonstrates a tremendous sense of civic responsibility.’

 Courtney Collier

Mature attitude and strength in all things she is involved in

A positive role model within the school, the marae, and Waka Ama Leader of the first team to represent Paeroa College at the National Secondary Schools Waka Ama Sprint Champs ‘her exceptional leadership was a key factor in the team doing well’

Female leader in school Haka

Never seeks the limelight

Member of Ngati Tawhaki Kapa Haka group that represented the Hauraki region overseas

Senior A Netball

Coach of junior team 


Huge influence on others both in and out of school

 Brylie Gordon

NCEA Levels 1 & 1 with Excellence
On track to Level 3 with Excellence


talented athlete

Thames Valley U17 netball

Athletics/Cross Country Champion

NZ Rowing U18 Girls Doubles
Secondary Schools Champion

Silver medalist: NZ U18 singles

Chosen to represent NZ at World

Rowing Champs in Junior Women’s Quad


‘a superb role model within our school’

Claudia Garcia

Top Academic for 2015

Academic Leader 2016

NCEA Levels 2 With Excellence

Completed Level 3 Classics while in Year 12



Left-Right: Adam Keane, Cameron Gordon (representing Brylie Gordon), Duncan Piesse, Hugh Budge, Gus Barrier, Crystal Scown, Ezra Thompson, Claudia Garcia, Alyssa Thurston, Bianca O’Connor, Courtney Collier, Mayor John Tregidga.