Newcastle’s Irini Kassas has been recognised for her outstanding work in the community.
The passionate 23-year-old was presented with the Youth Award during Newcastle Business Club’s annual awards luncheon on Tuesday.
“It’s an honour to be recognised by such a prestigious group,” she said.
“It was extremely overwhelming; I was not expecting to win – when it was announced my partner looked at me and said: ‘Are you going to get up now?’
“I was very emotional, and, in my speech, I mentioned how this year has been very emotional and it was nice to connect.”
Ms Kassas received the award for her exceptional leadership and commitment to the community.
As Deputy Chair of Newcastle International INC – a non-for-profit agency which focuses on reviewing and sustaining international relationships between Newcastle and overseas parties – she has been helping to raise awareness of Newcastle internationally.
“Being able to elevate our city on a global stage and being able to bring more tourism to Newcastle is amazing,” she said.
“I would like to thank everyone who believed in myself and the committee.
“It is such an incredible honour.”
Newcastle Business Club Senior Vice President Stephanie Jordan said Ms Kassas strived to enhance the community.
“In work and life Irini strives to bring people together for the betterment of society and ensuring opportunities are provided for positive social change,” Ms Jordan said.
“Irini paved the way for Newcastle’s engagement on the World Alliance and, through this, is connecting people on a global scale to elevate Newcastle and encourage international visitors to the region.”
Newcastle Business Club’s event recognises a younger (under 35) person, an individual, and a company/organisation each year who have made a significant contribution to the improvement of industry, culture, education, sport or the overall wellbeing of the citizens of Newcastle.
Apart from Ms Kassas, other winners included Out of the Square Media’s Founder and Managing Director, Marty Adnum, and Newy Burger Co.
Mr Adnum was presented with the Individual Award for his tireless support of the Newcastle community.
Newy Burger Co received the Organisation Award for using its profile to support and fundraise for local families battling various illnesses and hardship.