Paralympic triathlete Bill Chaffey has been named Tweed shire’s Citizen of the Year at a ceremony that saw fifty new Australians welcomed to the Tweed from 16 countries.
Mr Chaffey was left an incomplete paraplegic ten years ago from an accident and turned his attention to sport.
He had the honour of representing Australia at the Rio Paralympics where hies did the Tweed proud, finishing in fourth place.
Kingscliff Business Chamber President and Salt Surf Life Saving Club stalwart Mark Humphries, and long-serving Murwillumbah VIEW club president Shirley Kuhnell, shared the Volunteer of the Year honour.
There were also joint winners in the Sporting Achievement category with Kingscliff’s Paralympic swimmer Kate Wilson and Olympic swimmer Matt Abood sharing the award.
Twelve-year-old Lindisfarne Anglican School student Sam Smith was named Young Achiever in Community Service for his efforts in raising almost $8,000 for Tweed charity Kids In Need.
The Tweed Shire’s Community Event of the Year award was shared between the Kingscliff Lions Club 2016 District convention, the Kids In Need Association Dragon Boat Day, and the Tumbulgum 150 year celebrations.
The ‘Tweed Battle of the Bands’ was named winner of the Arts and Cultural Achievement award.
Meanwhile, Tweed mayor Katie Milne said the awards honoured some of the most selfless achievers in the community.
‘Our award recipients demonstrate there is much to be proud of here in the Tweed,’ she said.
‘We are lucky to have these outstanding citizens in our Shire but I know there are many more quiet achievers out there giving their heart and soul to the community and environmental causes – you know who you are.
‘On behalf of council I would like to congratulate and thank every one of you for contributing so much to this Shire.
‘There are 50 very excited people from 16 different countries who will become new Australian citizens today, I’m sure they will embraced by the community and be made to feel very welcome.
‘I also acknowledge this can be a day of mixed emotions for the Aboriginal community and my thoughts are with you.’