A man who stood tall during last season’s horrific bushfires has been recognised for his extensive work within the Cessnock region.
NSW Rural Fire Service (NSW RFS) Hunter Valley district service coordinator community safety Inspector Glenn Byrnes was this morning named the 2021 Citizen of the Year.
Cessnock City mayor Bob Pynsent congratulated all the Australia Day award recipients, as well as the 14 new Australian citizens on Tuesday 26 January.
“There were lots of smiling faces after the ceremony at the Cessnock Performing Arts Centre,” he said.
“Australia Day is a very memorable day to become an Australian citizen.
“However, the highlight was announcing Glenn Byrnes as the prestigious Citizen of the Year.”
Cr Pynsent thanked Mr Byrnes for his significant contribution to the Cessnock township; and constantly demonstrating community spirit.
“Glenn is an outstanding member of our community,” he said.
“His involvement stretches over three decades, back to when he first joined Cessnock Lions Club where he has held many positions and has been a driving force in the many ventures the club is involved in.
“His role with the NSW RFS Hunter Valley has also been extremely valuable to our community and its safety.
“His guidance and leadership was vital during the 2019-2020 bushfire emergency.
“On top of that, he’s a fantastic Santa, too.”
Cr Pynsent, along with Australia Day Ambassador Bob Turner, also paid tribute to the 12 other special residents, who received an Australia Day award.
“I would like to acknowledge Senior Citizen of the Year Les and Jane Goldie; and Young Citizen of the Year Bethany Dwyer for their hard work and dedication,” he added.
Australia Day award recipients:
- Citizen of the Year: Glenn Byrnes
- Senior Citizen of the Year: Les and Jane Goldie
- Young Citizen of the Year: Bethany Dwyer
- Maree Callaghan Award: Young Female Achiever, Isabelle Metcalfe
- Community Event of the Year: International Women’s Day Charity Dinner at the Cessnock Leagues Club
- Environmental Award: Chris Jackson
- Community Award: Katherine Kennedy
- Community Award: Jennefer Wratten
- Community Award: Kadie Sondermeyer
- Community Award: Siara Nash
- Community Award: Jesse Knight
- Community Award: Emerson Worthington