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City of Marion crowns community heroes

Monday 29 Jan 2024
Citizen of the Year Awards 2024

The City of Marion recently held its Citizen of the Year awards to recognise those who have made outstanding contributions to the community in 2023.

Hundreds gathered at the Mitchell Park Sports and Community Centre on Thursday 25 January for a twilight awards ceremony.

The event kicked-off with around 60 new residents receiving their Australian Citizenship in a special ceremony conducted by Mayor of Marion Mayor Kris Hanna.

Six awards were then presented across five Citizen of the Year Award categories after council received 19 quality nominations.

The winners were:

Citizen of the Year – Rob Gray

Rob Gray runs the Glandore Community Garden, ensuring it remains a quality, welcoming space for people from all walks of life.

Young Citizen of the Year – Jessica Williams and Antony Abbraciavento

As a member of the Youth Collective Committee (YCC), Antony is a young community leader for the vision impaired. Living with a disability, Antony is focused on improving the lives of those with shared experiences.

As a young Indian migrant Jessica founded Small World Networking to assist newcomers in Marion by connecting them to vital services. She is also a member of the YCC.

Sportsperson of the Year – Andrew Unger

Andrew has shown a tireless commitment to the Rugby League community in the south of Adelaide. As President of the South Adelaide Rugby League Club for four years, he wears multiple hats—from grounds manager to junior coach—ensuring the sport thrives locally.

Sports team of the Year – Marion Swimming Club

The Marion Swimming Club has been fostering inclusivity, promoting Indigenous reconciliation and excelling in global swimming events, including the Olympics, for several years. The club has created a diverse and welcoming environment for swimmers from over 15 nations.

Community Event of the Year – Souk Market – The Australian Refugee Association

The Australian Refugee Association's Souk market was the first-ever event of its kind hosted at the City of Marion's Tonsley Innovation District. More than 3000 people attended this multicultural market that was a highlight of Refugee Week celebrations.

Local musician and vocalist Jazmine Vanua treated the crowd to outstanding renditions of the Australian National Anthem, 'We Are One' and ' I Still Call Australia Home'.

The event was live broadcast on CoastFM with representatives from the Marion Swimming Club and the South Adelaide Rugby Club providing listeners with an insight into their sporting success.

The City of Marion congratulates all the award winners and nominees and extends its thanks for their selfless work across the community.

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