Topic: 2007 Hamilton Civic Awards

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In 2007 Civic Awards were presented to Eric Byron, William Barry Hopkins, Noeline Jefferies, Donald Lowry, Rosalie McGowan, Cecilie Anne McShane, Beryl Tremayne, Patricia and David Waugh, and Dean Carey Williams, in December 2007, by Mayor Bob Simcock.

Eric Byron

Eric first became associated with the IHC in Dunedin in 1964, when his daughter came under the IHC umbrella, attending day school.

From that time on both he and his wife had an active involvement with the IHC, including membership on various executive committees, and were involved with fundraising for major building projects in Dunedin.

In 1986 the family moved to Hamilton and almost immediately Eric became a member of the Hamilton Branch Executive Committee and once again concentrated on fundraising. Eric became Vice-President in 1992. He was instrumental in setting up the first computer system at the IHC head office in Hamilton and was involved in it's subsequent improvements.

After leaving the Executive Eric was still actively involved with IHC's work in Hamilton by being a collector for the Annual Appeal and being an auditor for the clients bank accounts.

When his daughter started to attend Sandz Gallery/Studio in Frankton he started going along two mornings a week to help but he gave much more than just "help" or assistance. Eric once again set up a new computer system and helped with internal financial systems. He has designed and built the lighting system for the gallery, organised the installation of the air-conditioning system, and built and installed signage. He is now the "odd job man" making frames for the artists and doing many manual jobs around the gallery.

Eric has an incredible commitment to people and works to create positive outcomes for the IHC organisation and its community. He is a worthy recipient of the Civic Award we are proud to bestow on him today.

William Barry Hopkins

Barry has been involved with the Waikato Society of Arts for over forty years. Through the WSA, and several other organisations, his contribution to the arts in Hamilton, and the Waikato region is considerable.

Not a painter himself, Barry has steadfastly promoted Waikato artists, dedicating his life to the betterment of artists in the area.

Barry has been President of the WSA, as well as serving on the Executive Management for several years, almost a full time commitment in his case.

The WSA maintained a ‘City' gallery for the benefit of Hamilton's residents and visitors for many years. Many artists had an opportunity to show their work in a professional gallery setting, and the gallery added an extra dimension to culture in the city, exposing local artists work to many people.

For many years Barry coordinated the hanging of these works every second weekend - hours of careful planning and execution went into each exchange of work, and he was the driving force behind each hanging.

Not limiting himself to the WSA, Barry has been involved with other Arts based organisations in the region including The Waikato Museum of Art & History, Southwell Art, Te Awamutu Museum and Te Wananga O Aotearoa.

Barry has recently put approximately one hundred and forty works of his personal collection into a Trust for the people of the Waikato, once again showing his unfailing generosity towards Hamilton and the area.

Barry Hopkins has put in thousands of hours of voluntary work over a period of forty years and truly deserves recognition for his outstanding commitment to art.

Noeline Jefferies

Noeline was the instigator of the founding of the Waikato Combined Equestrian Group (WEC) in 1984. Noeline worked tirelessly for two years and with many hours of work, and meetings, the group became a fully incorporated Society in 1986.

Noeline held the position of Secretary for six years, from 1985 - 1991. She held the position of Chief Executive from 1998 to 2003. She retired from the committee in 2007 but Noeline has remained a member of this group, and is often called upon for her knowledge.

She is a Dressage Judge for the New Zealand Equestrian Federation and the Dressage Coordinator for the Equestrian Section of the Masters Games held in Hamilton every two years.

During Noeline's tenure with the WEC the centre, and the group progressed from a dream into a reality. The Waikato Equestrian Group is now a progressive society, and has matured and grown in membership and stature as an organisation.

The centre is an asset to Hamilton City, focused on developing horse and rider to the highest level. WEC offer an excellent range of facilities and the support and training to assist riders in reaching their goals. The centre has it's own resident instructors and is also linked with top National and International trainers in various disciplines.

Her dedication and commitment, over many years, has offered Hamilton and its residents a first class organisation, she truly deserves the recognition of a Civic Award today.

Donald Lowry

Don's willing and competent service to his fellow citizens through the Ryder Cheshire Foundation, Lions and Rotary Club's over many years has been outstanding.

Don has played a leading role in the Ryder Cheshire Foundation (Waikato) Inc. since 1994. The Foundation provides high quality housing for people with disabilities and focuses on improving the quality of life for disabled individuals.

Don has worked diligently for the committee in securing funding, overseeing construction of dwellings and providing ongoing guidance to the committee, taking a personal interest in the wellbeing of people who chose to live in the homes.

Volunteering many hours of his time and expertise, Don is noted as someone who goes the "extra mile" for others, often found at working bees, fundraising or using his skills and often his own vehicle or tools to assist others.

Don has been a member of both Lions and Rotary since 1970, holding several Trustee and Committee positions over the years. He is currently a member of the Rotary Club of Hamilton East and the Riverside Probus Club. In the last thirteen years with the Foundation he has been a Chairperson of the Board of Trustees, Secretary and Treasurer.

Don is an inspiration to fellow trustees and residents alike, a team player who has quietly gone about making Hamilton a better place to live for many people. In the words of one testimonial he is an "inspiration to other's", a true unsung hero, who deserves this Civic Award.

Rosalie McGowan

Rosalie is passionate about her involvement in children's events and this shows in her dedication to Hamilton City children and their families through her numerous voluntary activities, some of which are highlighted below.

One of Rosalie's major commitments to the community has been in the area of the Waikato Regional Science Fair. For twenty years she has worked tirelessly as convenor, organiser and judge, doing much to enhance the value of Science Fairs throughout the secondary school network. The Fair's include hundred's of students and require detailed and substantial planning. For ten years Rosalie has been a member of the Waikato Science Teachers Association, holding various positions.

As a member of the Kiwanis Service Club for over twenty years Rosalie has coordinated and participated in countless fundraising activities for children, as well as assisting with the club's many community and social activities.

Rosalie also led a small team of volunteers, whose goal to provide a hand-made blanket to every new-born child in the premature baby unit at Waikato Hospital - more than one thousand of these blankets have been distributed to families in the Waikato. She also turns her sewing and needlework skills to costumes and banners for ballet and dancing groups.

As a Westside Kiwanis' member Rosalie has also been instrumental in fundraising for Relay for Life, to raise money for the Cancer Society. She has taken part, fundraised and lifted the profile of the event, as well as manned breakfast stations for over one thousand people. She has carried out similar work for Habitat for Humanity's "Women's Build' team projects.

We believe this public recognition of Rosalie's work is well deserved, she has made a valuable contribution to her community in many ways, never expecting anything in return. A true unsung hero, we believe this public recognition of Rosalie's dedication is well deserved.

Cecilie Anne McShane

Cecilie is one of Hamilton's most noted piano teachers, concert organiser, educator and accompanist and has made a very valuable contribution to the musical life of Hamilton over the past forty years.

She has been very active in promoting and organising classical music concerts, bringing world renowned performers to Hamilton. With her late husband, Cecilie took concerts and musical experiences to many Waikato schools, teaching children to appreciate music.

Cecilie was first elected to the Committee of the Waikato Branch of the Institute of Registered Music Teachers of New Zealand in 1986, and has give twenty-one years continuous service since this time. She is often the first on the committee to volunteer her services, and can be found behind the scenes, quietly working at whatever tasks need to be done. Cecilie frequently represents the Waikato branch at Council and community public meetings.

As a member of the Hamilton Chamber Music Society Committee and Concert Manager she works hard to make each concert a success - taking on the role of back stage manager and page turner. More recently Cecilie has become a member of the Chamber Music New Zealand Committee and contributes on a national level.

Cecilie actively promotes the teaching and appreciation of classical music in the Waikato and has made a contribution to the cultural life of Hamilton in many ways. She deserves this public recognition of her work.

Beryl Tremayne

Beryl is the behind the scenes worker "not known by many, but loved by hundreds".

Beryl and her husband Tom became site supervisors for the Salvation Army's support housing in 1989. The support housing project allows families to regroup and re-evaluate the direction of their lives. While Tom worked Beryl's role was to support and nurture the family through often difficult times.

The Salvation Army The Nest has seen over two hundred and thirty families come under Beryl's influence. The scheme is one of the most successful programmes run and it largely be put down to Beryl - her ‘can do' attitude, and encouragement and support for all of ‘her families'.

Although Beryl receives a small stipend for her work the continuous, often ‘on call'
twenty-four hours a day, support Beryl has given families over the years is tireless.
She has spent many hours working beyond expectations with families to re-establish themselves in the community. Beryl supports, and advocates, for all parents and children in the scheme, helps them to set realistic goals, and assists them achieving these goals.

Beryl's commitment to her families is such, that she is steadily working her way through modules of the Social Service Diploma, as she understands that this will assist in her interactions with her families.

Beryl is a worthy recipient of a Civic Award as the many testimonials from members of her ‘Families' prove - the measure of Beryl's work and commitment to our city can been seen in the many families that continue to develop and blossom with her help.

It is easy to list the numbers of people Beryl has helped but it is much harder to express the impact one person can have on so many different individuals. A true measure of Beryl's work and commitment to our city can been seen in the many families that continue to develop and blossom with her help. We truly believe Beryl deserves the recognition of a Civic Award.

Patricia and David Waugh

Patricia and David Waugh began AVP in Hamilton in 1991, offering basic conflict resolution workshops. AVP or Alternatives to Violence is an international organisation which runs workshops to help people create healthy relationships and peaceful communities.

The organisation now offers a series of workshop from basic to advanced and training for facilitators. The focus is to create peaceful pathways that provide alternatives to violence.

Together David and Patricia have sustained AVP (Waikato), sharing the co-ordination role for a number of years and between them doing whatever needed to be done for the workshops to be successful: administration, applying for funding, child care, driving cooking and clean-up.

They have gathered support for AVP through quiet, empowering leadership. They have unobtrusively mentored and encouraged individuals, reflecting AVP teachings in their personal relationships.

They have also supported local social service networking meetings over the years. Patricia has also contributed as secretary of the local ACE adult education community organisation and on the National AVP Committee.

In their "retirement" years they worked together to build an organisation which has changed lives and they have done so as dedicated volunteers. True unsung heroes, they are worthy recipients of a Civic Award. 

Dean Carey Williams

Dean has been a long standing member of the Hamilton Civic Choir, and its Chairperson for the last seven years.

Since taking up the role of Chairperson Dean's vision and energy has enabled the choir to develop considerably. The organisation has been empowered to produce several large scale concerts of important choral works performed in the Founders Theatre, bringing Hamilton audiences a standard of music which is rarely seen live in the city.

Dean's outstanding ability to obtain support for the choir in the community has established the choir on a firm financial footing and has allowed it to undertake large productions, with top quality international soloists and the best local orchestras with visiting conductors providing a high standard.

These successful performances have also lead to the ongoing musical development and confidence of the Civic Choir itself as new challenges are successfully met. During his time as Chairperson Dean was a key player in establishing the Hamilton Civic Choir Foundation which will ensure the continuation and security of the choir for current and future members.

Dean Williams has given much to the city in many ways, described in one testimonial as a "man of many parts" but today it is his strong, visionary leadership and his contribution to the Hamilton Civic Choir , and the added richness to the cultural life of the city, which we believe is worthy of recognition with this Civic Award.

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