Pilot Ryan Campbell named Bega Valley's Citizen of the Year

RYAN Campbell has been announced as the Bega Valley Shire Council’s Citizen of the Year.

Ryan is well known for his bravery and tenacity in completing a solo flight around the world, breaking two records in the process.

He was the youngest person to fly solo around the world and was the first teenager to do so.

The joint Young Citizens of the Year are Molly Campbell of Pambula and Gary Lonesborough of Bega.

Molly is being recognised as a dedicated and diligent volunteer for a range of community organisations in the Bega Valley Shire.

She has had a long-term involvement with the Pambula Surf Life Saving Club and the Sapphire Coast Concert Band, as well as being a passionate advocate for young people with disabilities.

She was also judged the winner of the National Lions Youth of the Year award and the Lions Youth of the Year National Public Speaking Competition in 2013.

Gary has also had a big year, publishing his first novel at age 18, winning a Bega RSL sub-branch scholarship, completing a school-based traineeship and playing rugby league with the Bega Roosters.

In 2012, he won the Patrick White Young Indigenous Writers Award for an outstanding short story and he has received numerous awards as an Aboriginal role model for fellow students.

The Bega Valley Shire Council’s Citizen of the Year and joint Young Citizens of the Year for 2013 will receive their awards at the Australia Day ceremony in Littleton Gardens, Bega.

The presentation will be a highlight of the shire’s official Australia Day celebration, which will follow a free breakfast in the park provided by the Bega Lions Club.

Meanwhile, the Bega Chamber of Commerce has announced its Community Citizen of the Year awards.

Bega librarian Anne Moore and Bega High School student Imogen Pittolo will also be presented with their awards on the day.

Five new Australian citizens will be welcomed and this year’s Australia Day Ambassador, television identity Catriona Rowntree, is sure to entertain a large crowd in the new-look Littleton Gardens.

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