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Learn about our local legends

Northern Beaches Council has collectively applauded the achievements of outstanding citizens honoured in the Australia Day Awards for 2021.

The group of 20 Award winners included disability and mental health advocates, emergency services and sports mentoring volunteers, and an environmental activist.

Citizen of the Year Christian Barwell said the motivation for starting his new disability support group was having a younger sibling who lives with a disability. He could see firsthand where quality services were lacking and how he could help make a difference.

Young Citizen of the Year went to environmentalist Stephanie Evans and Senior Citizen of the Year was Michael Christie for his dedication to junior sport. Mayor Michael Regan said having just come through a tough year (and a super tough end-of-year for the Beaches), he was “particularly grateful for people who selflessly gave back to their communities to make it a better place for all.”

You can view the full list on Council’s Honour Roll page, but here are a few within our purview worth doing a quick read up on:

Sports person of the year went to North Curl Curl legend Ruby Trew.

By the age of just 12, Ruby had won local, Australian and international skate events, as well as local, regional and state surf events.

Ruby Trew

Ruby has also been a guest speaker, mentor, advocate, coach, organiser and volunteer at several skate and surf events held locally and has been a skate coach and mentor at the iskate Australia run sessions at Mona Vale Skate Park since 2018.

Ruby is a positive role model for young people promoting health and wellbeing, self-esteem and self-confidence.

Bruce Loudon, of Freshwater, was awarded for his voluntary contribution to numerous local organisations and charities over the past 40 years, including as secretary of the National Servicemen’s Association and senior layman with the Freshwater Uniting Church.

The Balgowlah Bowling Club Committee got a nod for its commitment to saving the bowling club from closure, and revitalising the club for the enjoyment of the community. We’ll give our favourite calamari cook Carly May some credit for that too – if you haven’t tried it you’re missing out!