Wilma Lilley announced as Maitland's 2019 Citizen of the Year
Local resident and tireless volunteer, Wilma Lilley has been announced as Maitland’s 2019 Citizen of the Year.
Since moving to Maitland 23 years ago, Ms Lilley has dedicated countless hours of her time to local groups and organisations which provide support for children, vulnerable community members, older people and people with a disability.
Ms Lilley has positively contributed to the Maitland community through her work with Lower Hunter Peer Support, Lower Hunter Temporary Care, Volunteers for Palliative Care, Benhome Auxiliary Board, Community Care and the Lions Club to name a few.
Maitland Mayor Cr Loretta Baker says, ‘The Maitland Citizen of the Year is an award which recognises and celebrates an individual who has shown good citizenship, determination, enthusiasm and commitment through their service to our community. Wilma has demonstrated each of these characteristics for over two decades and is the perfect choice.
‘Her volunteer work with people from all demographics of Maitland is something to be admired and I have no doubt she has left a lasting impression on many people’.
The Young Citizen of the Year motivated 21 year old Hayley Johns, is passionate about youth participation, civic engagement and working with community members to make a positive change. This is demonstrated through her roles as Ambassador for the Young Endeavour Youth Scheme, as an Intrepid Landcare Leadership Retreat participant and Ambassador and Alumni of The Duke of Edinburgh's International Award.
‘We are so lucky to have a strong community of young people who are focused on making our city a better place for future generations. Hayley’s commitment makes me extremely proud,’ added Cr Baker.
Along with the two award recipients, close to 70 people became Australian citizens as part of Maitland’s Official Australia Day Ceremony. Locals who attended the ceremony were addressed by keynote speaker, Deng Adut, who spoke of his journey as a refugee and from a child soldier to criminal lawyer. Deng Adut appeared in Maitland as the first speaker in Maitland City Library’s Look Who’s Talking series.