Gold Medal Paralympian Scott Reardon to be Special Guest at 2016 Rotary Shine Awards

The Rotary Club of Wagga Wagga is currently seeking nominations for the 2016 Rotary Shine Awards. The awards were established to celebrate and acknowledge the achievements and contribution that individuals with a disability make to our community through their vocation and/or a business that employs and supports a person with a disability. 

In 2015, The Rotary Shine Awards announced a second patron, Samantha Brunskill, General Manager of Brunslea Park. Ms Brunskill joins first patron Brian Kahlefeldt OAM, in support and promotion of these awards and is recognition by the Rotary Club of the importance to raise awareness of mental health as a disability from a business leader perspective as well as from a community perspective. 

The lifetime risk of suicide for people with bipolar disorder is 15% - this represents 12% of all Australian suicides. Around one-quarter of patients with bipolar disorder make a suicide attempt at some point in their lifetime. The impact on quality of life, principally during depressive episodes, is quite substantive and often impairs the capacity to get to work and, if at work, to function well.

“I am honoured to be a patron of the Rotary Shine Awards,” said Ms Brunskill. 

“This appointment by the Rotary Club is a great example of how when a business shines a light on an important and often unspoken issue in a community, it can have a much wider effect than becoming a philanthropic project. 

“I believe that business has a huge role to play in creating positive social change. Our Community perspective at Brunslea Park is in line with Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs – we need shelter, a safe place to live and close connections with others in order to provide a wider contribution back to the community.” 

With nominations closing next Friday 18 November, Rotary Shine Awards Chairman, Alan Lean is calling for all nominations early. 

“The focus now is on nominations, which have been extended to Friday 18 November, said Mr Lean. 

“We encourage as many as possible to nominate both people with a disability who are employed casually, part-time or full-time; and employers who support a person with a disability.

“All nominees are recognised and presented, with an ambassador selected from each of the employee, small business and corporate nominations.” 

A nomination form is available to download from the Rotary website or alternatively a request for the form can be emailed to or contact Alan Lean on 0434 548 161. Nominations close on Tuesday 15 November. 

The Awards night will be held on Tuesday 29 November at an invitation-only event at Wagga Wagga Council Chambers, where all nominees will be recognised. The Rotary Club is pleased to announce that Gold medal

Paralympian Scott Reardon from Temora will be a special guest on the night. 

Photo: Patrons: Brian Kahlefeldt OAM and Samantha Brunskill. 

Cristy Houghton