Local government leaders have been widely recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for their outstanding contribution to the sector.
Mansfield Shire bushfire recovery campaigner Margaret Attley, Kwinana Mayor Carol Adams and local history champion and former councillor Peter Astridge are among the local government figures recognised in this year’s Honours, which are awarded each year to citizens who have made an “extraordinary” contribution to Australian society, according to Governor-General Peter Cosgrove.
Local government recipients of Order of Australia Medals over the weekend spanned both rural and metropolitan councils across various states and territories and include councillors who have made exceptional contributions to communities.
In NSW, of the recipients include Mr Astridge, who spent more than two decades supporting the Hunter’s Hill community as a local councillor championing local cultural and history preservation projects and waging battles against the state and federal government to protect community interests.
Kenneth Halstead who worked as a councillor at Wingecarribee Shire Council was another NSW recipient, as was Arthur Medcalf from Lachlan Shire Council and Warren Polglase, who has served as a councillor on Tweed Shire Council since 1991.
Chris Holstein, deputy Mayor of the Central Coast Council was also awarded an OAM medal for his service to the sector and the community of Gosford and was joined by David Border, who served as a representative for Granville from 2007 to 2011.
In Victoria, Laurence Evans, who served as Mayor at Bayside City Council and the City of Sandringham for a number of years, Cr Attley, Tony Antoun from Maroondah City Council and Jill Parker from Moyne Shire Council were all recognised for their contribution to local government and the community.
Jenny Mulholland, former Mayor of Banyule City Council was also recognised alongside Jill Parker, councillor of Moyne Shire Council and Kelvin Spiller, who worked as CEO of Mornington Shire Council.
In Western Australia, Mayor of the City of Kwinana Carol Adams was awarded for her service to the Perth community, where she served as a board member for a number of organisations including local schools, universities and community groups.
Cr Adams was joined by Michael Sutherland, former Deputy Lord Mayor of the City of Perth.
In Queensland, Greg Jones, former Mayor of Flinders Shire Council was awarded the medal for his service to the community of North Queensland, where he completed work in local disaster recovery.
In South Australia, Mayor of the Regional Council of Goyder Samuel Mattey took out the award for service to the sector and the local community.
Margaret Attley: Mansfield’s bushfire recovery
Cr Attley, who has been serving as a councillor for Mansfield Shire Council in Victoria for 14 years was recognised for her service to the sector and to the community of Mansfield in the aftermath of tragic fires in 2006-07.
Cr Attley was commended for her work gaining grants for upgrading of community assets following the fires as well as her membership on internal and external committees covering community services, particularly for young people.
The councillor also serves as the executive member of the Australian Local Government Women’s Association and founded the Tolmie Farmers Market and Antiques Fair, while also undertaking work for people with disability.
Peter Astridge: preserving Hunter’s Hill history
Another recipient of the OAM, Mr Astridge, former councillor of Hunter’s Hill council in NSW, was recognised for his decades of service to the local community and to the sector.
Mr Astridge worked for 25-30 years in the local north shore community, serving as the deputy mayor of the council from 2005-076 and 2002-03 and as councillor form 1995-2017.
Known as a central figure in the community, Mr Astridge served as a member of a number of committees including the Harbour Sculptures Committee, the Anzac Centenary committee, the Mainstreet Committee, while also formerly as the chair of the Hunters Hill Main Street Committee and the Conservation Advisory Committee.
Over a two-decade period, Mr Astride also worked as chair of the Public Transport and Traffic Advisory Committee and for the Moocooboola Festival Committee.
Mr Astridge told Government News that his decades of service to the community – which included “fights” against the state and local government to prevent amalgamation – were underpinned by a “passion” for the local community.
“I love the people and the people look up to me,” he said,
Anyone can nominate any Australian for an award in the Order of Australia. If you know someone worthy, nominate them now at www.gg.gov.au.
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