Surf Lifeguards from Ninety-Mile Beach down to Raglan were acknowledged on Saturday night at the Surf Life Saving Northern Region annual Awards of Excellence for their efforts and achievements in Surf Life Saving.
The Awards of Excellence were held at the Ellerslie Events Centre to celebrate the end of another successful season of saving lives, preventing drowning, and dealing to injuries on local beaches.
The awards covered coaching, lifeguarding, and surf sports, producing strong regional talent on both the national and international stage.
Lifeguard of the Year went to Lauren Gibbs from Bethells Beach SLSP for her passion and commitment towards all things Surf Life Saving. Lauren is described by her peers as “the complete package and a fantastic ambassador for the organisation.” This season Lauren has assisted in qualifying eight new Instructors, she is the Chief Instructor at Bethells Beach SLSP, and has been involved with several critical incidents. Since 1980, only five females have won this award, Lauren being the fifth, clocking up 92 patrol hours as well as 99 hours on Surfcom. Lauren takes on numerous regional roles of Community Education Instructor, Surfcom operator, Regional Lifeguard, Beach Auditor and Lifeguard examiner.
Volunteer of the Year went to Tim Jago from Muriwai Volunteer Lifeguard Service providing endless volunteer hours to all areas of Surf Life Saving. Tim is the Chair of the Muriwai VLS Management Board, ensuring over 500 members feel a part of the club at one of the regions busiest beaches. Tim is also the Chair of the Muriwai Amenities Trust, tasked with building the new Muriwai surf club, liaising with funders and the local council. Along with the club commitments, he is also an active Surf Life Saving Northern Region Board Member. Not only is Tim involved with the decision making aspect, he is also still seen on the beach in his lifeguard uniform, passing on his knowledge to younger members, cooking the team BBQ, and visiting the Sunday Nippers.
Red Beach SLSC took out the Club of the Year award for the second year in a row, along with Junior Competition Club of the Year and Senior Competition Club of the Year. Red Beach SLSC is committed to developing their membership, involving themselves in all aspects of Surf Life Saving from sport to services for the entire region. This season, Red Beach SLSC qualified 47 new lifeguards, refreshed 158 lifeguards, and has over 500 active members. Approaching its 60th anniversary, Red Beach continues to patrol not only their own beach, but helps out with patrolling other beaches in the region during the busy holiday season.
The CEO of Surf Life Saving Northern Region, Pam Elgar said, “The amount of work that our volunteers put in year round is incredible and the vast number of hours they give over the summer months is highly commendable. These awards are a great way for Surf Life Saving Northern Region to thank all lifeguards and volunteers right across the region and to congratulate the winners for their outstanding achievements on and off the beach.”
During the past season Northern Region Surf Lifeguards provided 88,455 hours of patrol, performed 465 rescues, administered 693 first aids and conducted 132 searches. They also performed 28,011 preventative actions involving 96,374 people.
Outstanding Contribution to Powercraft Shane Edwards and Sam Dwen – Sunset Beach LS
Instructor of the Year Chris Butt – Muriwai VLS
Rookie Lifeguard of the Year Monica Nevill-Jackson - Bethells Beach SLSP
U19 Lifeguard of the Year Oliver Tyack – Muriwai VLS
Lifeguard of the Year Lauren Gibbs - Bethells Beach SLSP
Examiner of the Year Lindsay Hill - Whangarei Heads VSLS
Regional Lifeguard of the Year Logan Adams - Piha SLS
Outstanding Contribution to Junior Surf Mark Readman - Red Beach SLS
U14 Sportswoman of the Year Hannah Williams - Mangawhai Heads VLS
U14 Sportsman of the Year Izaak Scheib - Red Beach SLS
Surf Coach of the Year Mark Bourneville - Piha SLS
Surf Official of the Year Zayne Boon - Mairangi Bay SLS
U16 Sportswoman of the Year Briar McLeely - Red Beach SLS
U16 Sportsman of the Year Adam Parker - Orewa Surf Life Saving SLS
U19 Sportswoman of the Year Danielle McKenzie - Mairangi Bay SLS
U19 Sportsman of the Year Andrew Saunders - Orewa SLS
Open Sportswoman of the Year Chanel Hickman - Mairangi Bay SLS
Open Sportsman of the Year Steven Ferguson - Piha SLS
Competition Team of the Year Piha A Senior Mens Boat Crew
Volunteer of the Year Tim Jago - Muriwai VLS
Beach Education Instructor of the Year Jamilah Hudson - Muriwai VLS
Administrator of the Year Jonathon Williams - Omaha Beach SLS
Innovation of the Year Muriwai VLS for work with Unitec
Best Patrolled Beach Kariaotahi SLSC
Junior Competition Club of the Year Red Beach SLSC
Senior Competition Club of the Year Red Beach SLSC
Masters Competition Club of the Year United North Piha LS
Rescue of the Year Sunset Beach LS
Patrol Championships Mangawhai Heads VLS
Pool Championships Piha Surf Life Saving
IRB Championships Muriwai Volunteer Lifeguard Service
Cath & Eddie Millar Cup Red Beach SLSC
Club of the Year Red Beach SLSC
Northern Region Championships Red Beach SLSC
Northern Region Junior Surf Champs Red Beach SLSC