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Rotary rewards hard workers

Recipients of the South Wairarapa Rotary Club’s Pride of Workmanship Award. PHOTO/LISA URBANI


Simply put, the Rotary, Pride of Workmanship Award is to honour the commitment to a job well done on the part of an employee.

Its theme is “Do it Once, Do it Well – Build a better New Zealand”

The 12 recipients of the Pride of Workmanship & Community Service Awards, were recognised at a special dinner, in the Anzac Hall in Featherston earlier this month.

Hosted by the South Wairarapa Rotary Club at their Bi-Annual Awards night, the guest speaker, the Deputy Vice Pro Chancellor from Massey University, Professor Chris Gallavin, gave a stirring speech.

Praising the effort of the recipients, he said “you don’t know what you’re capable of till you find your passion.”

“We should all take responsibility in our community, do it in little ways and look for opportunities to be a leader’, he said, with particular reference to the current challenge faced by New Zealanders in dealing with the Covid-19 epidemic.

The Award takes in to account all aspects of work performance and ethics, including the quality, output, safety, initiative and sense of responsibility at all working levels in the community.

Its recipients are nominated by their employers or members of the public, and it is intended to encourage favourable employer/employee relationships, and a sense of community pride in individual achievement.

This particular group exemplified the criteria of “building a better New Zealand.”

Ken Aburn is a farmer from Pirinoa who has been instrumental in encouraging sporting pursuits in his district, and building a strong sense of community in his rural area.

Charlotte Harding has been active in the Martinborough Toy Library, and has made a sterling contribution to the Martinborough Business Association, and in particular to their Dark Skies tourist project.

Dick Smith is a celebrated and respected member of Featherston with an illustrious career in military and civil service, and is devoting his time to research for the D Company 28 Maori Battalion research Project.

Gail Wilson launched a cook book to raise funds for a hospital care facility at Wharekaka, and offers free therapy treatments to locals suffering a loss in their lives.

Graeme Gray has made a massive contribution to the Greytown community, serving on numerous Trusts, while also being a volunteer fireman and working at Cobblestones Museum.

Sian Paterson established Blue School and The Pod after identifying a need for a highly professional standard of early childhood education in Greytown. She is an expert in children with behavioural difficulties, works with teenagers at risk, and is an active caregiver for many foster children.

Keiko Schoebrunn-Nojima is known as the Tai Chi Queen in Featherston. She has been providing a community service at cost without profit, sharing her love of this ancient discipline and she has been heavily involved in the bi-annual visit to Featherston of the Japanese Chor-Farmer Choir Group.

Terry Blackstop has served various organisations such as St John’s, Martinborough Youth, Golf and Lion Clubs and the Ruamahanga Health Trust, either as a Treasurer or Secretary. His contributions in the running of these organisations, have been highly valued.

Derek Wilson has served the Lands Trust of Greytown for 40 years, including as Chairman for six years. He is an Executive of Greytown Rugby Club, Wairarapa Working Men’s Club and Wairarapa Bush Rugby Union. He is also a former coach of the Kuranui College First XV.

Stan Matovich has supervised the operations of the Greytown Transfer Station for many years, and has also been willing to assist in managing the local camping ground when sudden vacancies occurred. His friendly and helpful assistance are greatly appreciated.

Emily Greenberg is very much at the forefront of many Environmental projects advocated by the Wairarapa Moana Wetlands restoration group, and various local Walkway initiatives. She has had a long association with the Featherston Community Centre and Featherston Booktown.

Trevor Hawkins is a prominent Transport business owner who has been a generous supporter of the Martinborough Rugby and Golf Clubs, of Hau Ariki Marae, MENZ Shed and the rural community at large.

Professor Gallavin said of the efforts of the recipients, “I am confident greatness of human beings comes out of the human spirit, and essence of what it means to be human.”

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