2014 Bass Coast Australia Day Awards

Award ceremonies were held in Cowes and Wonthaggi as part of Australia Day celebrations across the Shire on Sunday.

Bass Coast Mayor, Cr Neil Rankine, presented four awards to community members for their dedication and contribution to the Bass Coast region.

“There are many wonderful people who commit their time and effort to better our community, and we are here today to acknowledge some of those people,” Cr Rankine said.

 “Thank you to everyone who submitted nominations for the Awards. We had a strong field in four categories this year.

“I’d like to thank the Bass Coast Australia Day Committee for assistance in judging the nominations, which is never an easy task!

“Unfortunately, there can only be one selected in each category and I congratulate all of our most deserving winners.”

This year’s Bass Coast Australia Day Award recipients are:


Clive and Julie Kilgour – Family Achievement Award

Clive and Julie have dedicated over 30 years to the Bass Coast community.

The Wonthaggi Golf Club, Moonya Services, Wonthaggi Secondary College, South Gippsland Orchid Club and Apex, but to name a few, have all benefitted from Clive and Julie’s time, expertise, caring nature and enthusiasm.

While both were employees of Bass Coast Regional Health, formerly the Wonthaggi and District Hospital, they selflessly went above and beyond their roles at the Hospital, by volunteering many hours of their time to hospital volunteer programs, the Ladies Auxiliary in Julie’s case, and the support for youth space in Wonthaggi by Clive.

While juggling their many commitments, the Kilgours also provided emergency foster care for children in the 1980s.

This is but a snapshot of Clive and Julie’s loyalty, integrity and character.

Their commitment to the community is unreserved and worthy of acknowledgement as the winners of the Family Achievement Award.




2013 Bass Coast Children’s Expo – Community Event of the Year

In Bass Coast, a dedicated working group committed to the positive development of children in the Bass Coast region, organised the 2013 Bass Coast Children’s Expo, held on 19 October, and now in its third year.

The event was presented by the Bass Coast Children’s Festival Working Group, in partnership with the Victorian Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, and was supported by Bass Coast Shire Council.  This event launched National Children’s Week, which is celebrated in October every year.

The aim of the expo was to “celebrate children in Bass Coast through free and accessible events that provide opportunities for recreation, education, promotion of health and wellbeing and lots of fun”.

Working group members volunteered many hours to organise this event, including sourcing sponsors, service providers and support organisations to provide a wonderful experience for all with the right blend of information for adults and education, entertainment and fun for all!


Stephanie Mann – Arts and Cultural Ambassador of the Year

After a long but valiant battle with illness, Stephanie recently passed away.

Stephanie’s husband, David and daughter, Emma, accepted the Award on Stephanie’s behalf.

Stephanie’s significant contribution to the arts in Bass Coast included various roles with the Phillip Island Arts and Cultural Committee, Offshore Theatre, the U3A Stagecraft Group, and as Artistic Director and Production Manager of the annual U3A concert.

Stephanie’s dedication, enthusiasm and encouragement which she willingly shared with others, brought new people into the groups she was involved with.

Stephanie was also a performer.  Moving to Phillip Island with over 40 years professional acting experience, she acted in various one-woman shows, performing voluntarily for community fundraisers.

Being an active member of St Phillips Anglican Church, Stephanie volunteered her time to fundraise for the Church and organise artistic and acting performances.

Stephanie was aware of her selection as the 2014 Bass Coast Arts and Cultural Ambassador of the Year before her passing, and was delighted.


Barbara Oates – Citizen of the Year

Corinella born and bred Barbara Oates has developed an impressive resume of voluntary commitment to the community for well over a decade.

Whilst owning and managing the Corinella General Store, a full time job in itself, Barbara has found time to commit to the Corinella Foreshore Committee, Kilcunda Bass Cricket Club, Corinella Hall Committee and the Bass Valley Historical Society, among others.

In her spare time, Barbara’s involvement in many projects has seen the development of some wonderful local assets and programs. Some of these are the Corinella Jetty Project, Clean Up Australia Day, Bass Coast Healthy Living Program and the Corinella Hall Kitchen Refurbishment.

Barbara appears to have the knack of making things happen, either through her own actions, or by encouraging, mentoring and assisting others to achieve.  Her efforts have resulted in improved facilities and services for the broader community.

It appears Lucille Ball’s quote, “if you want something done, ask a busy person to do it” is personified in Barbara.

It is difficult to truly capture the impact Barbara has had on the community and list all her achievements. All we can say today is that Barbara has given tirelessly of herself for the betterment of our community and simply embodies the community spirit of our Citizen of the Year.