Local Citizen of the Year Awards

ku-ring-gai citizen award winners

On Australia Day we recognised the outstanding work of our local community’s unsung heroes at the Local Citizen of the Year Awards.

These awards were presented to individuals and organisations who generously donated their time and effort to help others and improve the Ku-ring-gai Community. The Local Citizen of the Year Awards honour Ku-ring-gai residents who have demonstrated excellent citizenship and a contribution to the people of Ku-ring-gai or the wider community.

2023 Citizen of the Year Award winners

Citizen of the Year - Anthony Pang

Mr Anthony Pang, also known as Tony to many has for over 30 years actively volunteered his time and efforts to multiculturalism, community harmony and social justice. Despite his hectic work schedule as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), he is passionate about building a harmonious society and minimising discrimination. He has helped alleviate the needs of various disadvantaged groups in the community, including children, seniors and people with disability. Tony for many years was also a Board member for Northside Radio FM 99.3FM, Meals on Wheels and sat on various Government Advisory Committees including Cemetery and Crematoria, NSW Police, Justice, NSW Library and 3 years as Commissioner for the NSW Community Relation Commission Tony joined The Chinese Australian Services Society Board or CASS as it is known in 2012 as a Director and has been the Deputy Chairperson/Secretary since 2016. Through his active involvement in CASS, Tony has worked with people from diverse cultures and built community networks. His role as an active volunteer has put him in regular contact with people from all walks of life and from different cultures, especially those accessing aged care services, disability services and migrant services. Tony has had to overcome prejudice, mistrust and different cultural beliefs in order to gain common ground, resolve differences and achieve positive results. His long-term commitment to community services is worthy of recognition. Without the generous and selfless contribution from volunteers like Tony, CASS would not have developed to its present scale, benefiting many disadvantaged families.

Young Citizen of the Year - Justin Qin

Justin is a year 10 student currently attending Barker College and a resident of Kur-ring-gai since migrating to Australia in 2014. Motivated by passions for equality, writing and debating, Justin represented Kur-ring-gai at the NSW youth parliament and was elected Deputy Leader of Government. Through his tenure, he led the Inclusion and Diversity council passing the report alleviating and advancing NSW workplace inequality. Furthermore, Justin through his role spent time advocating for student equality, specifically designing initiatives to combat toxic masculinity in high school. During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, he also published two articles for ABC and News.com sharing experiences of local schooling. To cap off the year, Justin represented NSW and Kur-ring-gai at the United Nations sponsored National Evatt competition, placing 4th overall as the top NSW team.

Environmental Citizen of the Year - Arden Liceralde

Arden is a Year 5 student at Sacred Heart, Pymble who shines in so many ways. Arden demonstrates leadership across all areas of school life, especially in her role as one of our two 'Kindness Superheroes'. Arden devised and enacted a plan where she is volunteering her time in the Community Garden near the Blackbutt Creek Track in Gordon. She has established a plant exchange stall where the local community can donate a plant or seeds to the garden, or exchange them for a bonsai clipping that Arden cultivates and donates herself. Arden has created an Instagram account (@littlemissbonsai) to share her love of gardening with others. She has already made many positive connections with children and young people in the community and is spreading her passion for improving the local environment. She is spending a great deal of time, both in and outside of school, spreading her positive message and engaging others in the community in this environmental initiative. We are so impressed and proud of Arden's initiative, drive and commitment to this project

Mayor’s Award for an Outstanding Contribution by a Community Organisation - St Ives Lifestyles Disability Support Team

St Ives Lifestyle Disability Support team supports many individuals with Cerebral Palsy and other complex and similar disabilities in achieving their goals and passions in their life. Clients can participate in a variety of activities from gardening, cooking, crafts, creating works of art, or singing and day excursions. The aim is to help ensure those with a disability are not held back and are able to participate in regular events and activities. The team and its incredible Disability Support Practitioners have positively impacted the lives of many people with disability in the Ku-ring-gai area. With over 40 staff who are passionate about actively supporting and engaging people with Cerebral Palsy in their goals and lives, the Centre and staff have built and established relationships and with local businesses. They have such incredible, positive and inspiring personal attributes, to come to work every single day and support individuals with complex needs to achieve their goals and aspirations in their lives. This effort every day makes an impact in the community and the quality of not only the lives of the people who attend the centre but surrounding businesses, families and wider community.