2021 Ipswich Australia Day Awards created by local ceramic artist Jane du Rand.
2021 Ipswich Australia Day Awards created by local ceramic artist Jane du Rand.

Full list of Ipswich Australia Day 2021 winners

IPSWICH’S best and brightest were recognised for their passion, hard work and dedication to the city at the 2021 Australia Day Awards.

About 50 nominations were made for the awards with finalists and winners selected by an independent judging panel.

Local ceramic artist Jane du Rand was commissioned to create the trophies.

She created a ceramic jar with a lid topped with a sculpture of an Australian native bird which can be found in and around Ipswich.

Citizen of the Year winner Glen Smith said he was overjoyed with his trophy.

“When I went up there I thought I want to win this just to get the trophy,” he laughed.

“I’ve always like Jane’s work.

“I know own two of her pieces.”

More stories profiling award winners will be published on the QT this week.

Citizen of the Year Award

Winner: Glen Smith

President of ArtsConnect Ipswich, Mr Smith is the driving force behind the dedicated group’s use of art to strengthen community ties and empower those in need of a hand up. A luminary of the city’s art scene, Mr Smith has lived in Ipswich for 20 years and has run his top of town business the Vintage Advantage for a decade.

Jane du Rand on trophy: “I decided on a Sulphur Crested Cockatoo for this award as they are striking and proud birds and also seem to me to be birds capable of doing many very clever things. I imagine one would be proud to be awarded Citizen of the Year and would also have achieved something significant to receive this award.”

Senior Citizen of the Year Award

Winner: Pamela Lane

Ms Lane enjoyed a successful career as a registered nurse and midwife before she was named West Moreton Health and Hospital Service CEO in 1993. Upon her retirement, Pam accepted a position on the board of the West Moreton-Oxley Medicare Local. She has also served on the boards of TAFE, Ipswich Hospital Foundation and Ipswich Hospice Care. She is the president of the Ipswich Club.

Jane du Rand on trophy: “This award has a Superb Fairy Wren. I see these striking little birds all over Ipswich. They are a favourite bird of my mother who is a senior citizen and who loves to watch these little wrens bathing in our garden birdbath.”

Young Citizen of the Year Award

Winner: Blake Wesbro

Blake is a young man with Wiradjuri heritage. He works for Wesbro Services. Wesbro is a NDIS Registered Aboriginal Disability Service Provider, which is an inclusive organisation working with all people. Blake is also a driver in the Ipswich Black Coffee network, which assists in generating the strength and capacity of Indigenous businesses.

Jane du Rand on trophy: “I chose a pair of Double Barred Finches for this award. I often see these finches in Ipswich, even though they are small, they are very smart, busy and always look as if they are doing something important. I thought this would complement a young citizen award.”

Sports and Recreation Award

Winner: Calvin Hegvold

Mr Hegvold began coaching basketball and rugby league in Ipswich 30 years ago. The school teacher has led multiple Met West sides over the years. He is the only Met West mentor to have coached state championship-winning combinations in two team sports. During his tenure he has coached in 39 separate state championships in both basketball and rugby league.

Jane du Rand on trophy: “Here I have chosen a Kingfisher. I often see a Kingfisher fishing at the river at Colleges Crossing when I walk my dogs. I think they are perfect little “sports birds” with their precision hovering over the water and their perfect dives to catch their prey.”

Cultural Award

Winner: Toni Risson

Ms Risson is a hugely successful local author and artist. She has published children’s books, cultural histories, short stories and articles and numerous peer-reviewed articles and book chapters. She has won various prizes and awards, most recently the Estelle Pinney Short Story Prize.

Jane du Rand on trophy: “This award has a Rainbow Lorikeet. These are fabulous, bold birds with loads of character. I like to watch them in Limestone Park in the evenings when the sun is setting as they seem to gather together to perform to each other. I imagine they would be great actors and singers and poets, and the writers of many stories.”

Spirit of Ipswich Award

Winner: Zoe Knorre

Ms Knorre operates Engage Psychology in Ipswich and works as a volunteer leading and directing the Grace Homestead Recovery Centre in the Lockyer Valley. The centre is an alcohol and drug rehabilitation centre where mothers can recover with their children.

Jane du Rand on trophy: “I chose a Blue Faced Honey Eater for this award as the first place I came across one of these birds was just outside of my home in Ipswich in the bottlebrush tree on the neighbour’s verge. They are slightly cheeky spirited birds that often come to argue with the Rainbow Lorikeets about who should be in the bottlebrush anyway.”

Community Event of the Year Award

Winner: Queensland Fire Appeal – Cent Auction

The auction brought the community together in response to the devastating bushfires early last year. It raised $3,300 for Pine Mountain District Rural Fire Brigade to purchase much-needed new lifesaving equipment.

Jane du Rand on trophy: “I chose a Magpie for this award as I think that the Magpies are always very aware of what happening in their local community. The pair of Magpies who live on the verge in our street know everyone up and down the road and know who to visit at the best time to get a treat. I think Magpies are community minded birds.”

Read more stories by Lachlan McIvor here.