Sunshine Coast Australia Day Award Recipients 2022
  • Last updated:
  • 01 Jul 2022

The Sunshine Coast Australia Day Awards are a celebration of the contribution that individuals, community groups and organisations make in our region.

The 2022 Sunshine Coast Australia Day Awards ceremony took place on 22 March where recipients were announced for the following seven categories:

  • Citizen of the Year
  • Senior Citizen of the Year
  • Young Citizen of the Year
  • Community Group or Organisation
  • Environment and Sustainability
  • Sport and Recreation
  • Creative

The following are the recipients of each category followed by nominees:

Citizen of the Year – MARK ELLIS

Mark Ellis is a dedicated advocate and community worker, fighting homelessness on the Sunshine Coast. Between 2019 – 2021 he volunteered over 250 hours. Mark developed the 2019-21 One Roof Program which provides a range of support and services to almost 10,000 vulnerable people. Mark also collaborated with Sunny Street to launch their first medical outreach clinic, which seeks to provide free medical assistance to the vulnerable. Following the murder of a gentleman who had been sleeping rough, Mark has also raised $200,000 for the Coast’s first sleep bus for men, women and children.


Andrew Bailey Tracey Barnes & Zoey Foran Prost
Kerrie Dunn Brad Hore
Jenny Lee Katie Livick
Gary McKitterick – Gillett Paul Morton
Travis Schultz

Gail Smith

Senior Citizen of the Year – JAMES COLES

James (Jim) Coles is RangeCare’s longest serving volunteer with 27 years of voluntary service. Jim has served as Blackall RangeCare Group’s voluntary Management Committee for 14 years. The last three years of his time on the Management Committee, Jim served as Vice President. Jim raised funds for renovations to the RangeCare site in Flaxton and raised $460,000 for a new building in 1994. Jim remains an active member of the organisation and currently volunteers at least twice a week in RangeCare’s Op Shop in Mapleton.


Vincent Carbery Dot Crane
Albert Powerlett Stella Romagnoli
John Taylor Joyce Turnbull
Wendy Veale Carolyn Wilson

Young Citizens of the Year – SOPHIE GREENHALGH & JACK WATSON

Sophie is a Year 11 student at Mountain Creek State High School who strives daily to be an inspirational role model. She continually displays excellence in her academic studies, leadership, innovation, community and volunteer work. Sophie’s dedication to service and academic excellence is reflected in her many awards and accolades including the 2020 USC Rise ‘n’ Shine Award and 2020 ADF Future Innovators Award. Sophie also volunteers for Chaplain pancake breakfast each week at school and was one of 20 ambassadors nationally, selected for the 2020 – 2021 PNG Aus Partnership.

Jack is very involved in his school community and his co-curricular activities include being Co-founder of the school’s Debate Club, a Member of Student Representative Council, a Lion’s Youth of the Year Participant and a participant of the University of Melbourne’s Corporate Social Responsibility Board Program. Jack has been accepted to study a Bachelor of Law and Commerce (Accounting). He has received numerous awards including Queensland Secondary Schools Citizenship Award 2021 by the Order of Australia Association, Dr Joe Goodall Community Spirit Award, Burnside Mortgage Choice Bursary and the Burnside Rotary Citizenship Award.


Harrison Dines James Donnelly
Imogene Dowler Justin Holland
Annie Jones Gemma Roake

Community Group or Organisation – MOOLOOLABA SURF LIFE SAVING CLUB

In 2022, Mooloolaba Surf Life Saving Club will celebrate 100 years of community service. Mooloolaba Surf Life Saving Club has over 1425 members, with Mooloolaba lifesavers completing 14,000 volunteer patrol hours and performing over 1800 preventative actions and rescues per season including upwards of around 180 first aids. The Club organises countless community events including an ANZAC Day Dawn Service, Christmas Tree Appeal, Ironman 70.3 Sunshine Coast, Mooloolaba Mile Ocean Swim and the Mooloolaba Triathlon Festival. The Mooloolaba Nipper program has over 430 children participating per season and Starfish Nippers for children with disabilities.


Brothers Rugby Club Sunshine Coast Buderim Foundation
Cycling Without Age – Sunshine Coast Global Hub for Women – Caloundra Community Centre
Kenilworth Community Transport Service Sub-Committee Maroochy Men’s Shed
Mooloolaba Surf Life Saving Club Nambour Community Centre
Nambour Meals on Wheels Service Queensland Country Women’s Association Palmwoods
Queensland Fire and Emergency Services Rip City Basketball Club – Little Rippers
River Road Equine Assisted Learning Sinclair Tours Sunshine Coast
Sunshine Butterflies Nambour Salvation Army
Wildings Forest School

Environment and Sustainability - ECOLLABORATION

ECOllaboration (formerly Maroochy Waterwatch) is a not-for-profit community organisation that has been working on conservation projects across the Sunshine Coast for over 25 years. They have planted tens of thousands of trees, removed tonnes of weeds from the Coast’s natural areas, eliminated tonnes of rubbish from the Mooloolah and Maroochy Rivers, employed dozens of disadvantaged Sunshine Coasters and trained them in Conservation and Land Management and taken thousands of water quality samples in waterways across the region. Through the education of school children, they have created a sense of environmental stewardship across multiple generations. region.


Karen Anderson Architects for Resilient Communities Sunshine Coast
Janet Carew Jude Crighton
Fergus Fitzgerald Gemma Roake
Wildings Forest School


Toni has worked with Arts Connect, organising Sculpture on the Edge, Sunshine Coast Open Studio’s and is currently working on reopening Stevens Street Gallery in Yandina. Her dedication to enabling the artistic community is admirable. She is passionate about creating spaces to appreciate art through events and giving a voice to artists. Her business, Mother Goose Media, saw the birth of Kids on the Coast magazine, a publication that is still running today. She also runs Boxed Up, a business that only stocks products from Sunshine Coast local artisans.

For over 30 years, John has contributed vastly to the arts sector as an artist, art educator, curator, and manager. For over 20 years, he worked as an education officer and gallery director for government and corporation,leading innovative gallery facilities and programs. For close to eight years John was Gallery Manager for both Caloundra and Noosa Regional Galleries.  During that time, he developed the Sunshine Coast Art Prize, curated touring exhibitions featuring local artists and led a team responsible for the situating of Andy Goldsworthy’s ‘Strangler Cairn’ within the Conondale Great Walk.


Kellie & Gavin Hamburger
Tropicalia Dance Studio

Sport and Recreation – DR BRIDIE KEAN

Bridie is a duel Paralympic medallist, former Captain of the Australian Gliders, USC academic, President of the Suncoast Spinners wheelchair sports club and the Paralympic representative who helped win the Brisbane bid for the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Bridie leads by example and inspires those around her to create inclusive sporting opportunities with lasting outcomes. Bridie is working to ensure that the 2032 Games have a legacy that trickles through for people with a disability into all aspects of life – education, employment, public transport and access to sport.


Maddie Doorn Audra Kearney
Sebastian Morris Stu Shaw
Sunshine Coast Netball Association David Tomba
Liisa Ups Joel Yeo