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Mayor pays tribute to our tireless volunteers

The Waikato district is scattered with people who work tirelessly to make their communities better place to live, work and play through volunteering.

Whether it be through service groups, fire brigades, community newsletters, schools, they go above and beyond to help others.

On Tuesday, 3 October, 32 such people were recognised for their efforts through the Waikato District Council’s Mayoral Community Awards.

In front of a packed house of whanau and friends at Council’s Chambers, award-winners received a certificate, kawakawa tree and a plaque presented to them by Waikato District Mayor Jacqui Church.

Mayor Church said that the award-winners play a big part in helping Council achieve its vision of Creating Liveable, Thriving and Connected Communities.

“We cannot achieve that vision alone.  We need to work with our communities to do that,” she said.

“Our award-winners are helping us through the volunteering mahi that they do, and have done, at the grassroots level, right here in the heart of our communities.”

The recipients were selected by our Councillors, Community Boards, and the Mayor herself.

Hailing from all corners of our district, Mayor Church wanted to formally recognise and celebrate these individuals who work behind the scenes, often doing unpaid voluntary work over long periods of time to improve community wellbeing.

In congratulating all the award-winners at the ceremony, Mayor Church shared her appreciation for all that they do.

“You are the strength and fibre of our communities,” she said.

“We sincerely thank you, on behalf of all the people you have served over the years.

“You are stars of the Waikato district, and I sincerely hope you continue to shine brightly in your communities.”

Mayoral Community Award winners for 2023 are:


Margaret “Jae” Semau; Megan and Shane Groom; Tutekiha Tupaea; Dave Barnes


Phil Ludwig; Claire Molloy; Red Wootton; James Rawiri


Angeline Greensill; Margaret Dillon; Kevin Holmes


Doug and Marion Rowe; Helen Clotworthy


Moera Solomon; Lynne Tahana

Te Kauwhata

Glen Whitaker; Rhonda Irvine


Sue Edmonds


John Bridgman


Kitty Burton


Robyn Budd


Ben Brown


Lance and Valencia Hamerton


Wenny Lubbers


Kay Vincent


Leo Koppens


Tukukino George

Te Kowhai

Amanda Jongeneel 


Kate Reese