Port Stephens Annual Award winners presented at Riverside Park presentation

From face painting to speed boat demonstrations, barbecue sausages and petting zoos, Riverside Park was host to some family friendly activities for Australia Day in Raymond Terrace.

The day began with the presentation of the Port Stephens Annual Awards as proud friends and family gathered around to congratulate the recipients.

“What a great collection of nominations we had for these awards this year,” the mayor Ryan Palmer said.

“While I wasn’t involved in the selection process the winners today are very deserving.”

You can read the full list of winners here.

Port Stephens Citizen of the Year, Colleen Mullholland-Ruiz, was recognised for her contributions to the community, which included her ongoing support of the Positive Behaviour for Learning (PBL) program, which aims to create safe teaching and learning environments for schools.

“In receiving this award I would like to acknowledge the traditional owners of this land and I would like to thank this beautiful community for allowing me and my committee members and Marketplace to do the work we do,” she said.

“This isn’t just recognition of me, it is recognition of the community and I hope the award brings us all closer together so we can achieve even more.”

Ms Mullholland-Ruiz said the community was at the heart of what PBL wished to achieve.

“We need to teach the children right today because they are our future and among them our future leaders,” she said.

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