Australia Day Awards


​​Lockyer Valley Australia Day recipients announced

A couple who raised more than $350,000 for many worthwhile charities are the proud recipients of this year's Lockyer Valley Citizen of the Year Award.

Lockyer Valley Mayor, Cr Tanya Milligan awarded Neil and Gae Simpson the honour at the official Australia Day ceremony, held at the Gatton Shire Hall.

Mayor Milligan said the couple, who are also owners of the Withcott Hotel, are community-minded citizens who always put others first.

"Neil and Gae are always happy and willing to support the community, service and sporting groups in both Withcott and across the Lockyer Valley.

"Every year they host the Anzac Day function after the service, with the hotel recognised by RSL Queensland for this event.

"Neil and Gae are driven by their commitment to helping others and the Lockyer Valley as a community and for that, we congratulate them," Mayor Milligan said.

The Young Citizen of the Year was awarded to Michaela Kammholz.

A committed member of the Gatton Show Society for the past five years, Michaela has accomplished various roles from stewarding to Miss Showgirl, assistant secretary and was awarded Miss Showgirl for the 100th Gatton Show.

"Michaela was nominated as the Emerging Leader in the Queensland Show Awards and was also a key member in organising the Young Farmers Challenge, Next Gen initiative and Ties and Tiaras.

"Michaela is a selfless young woman who has achieved a great deal already.

"I am confident she will go on to make a real difference and I would like to applaud Michaela for showing such tenacity and drive," Mayor Milligan said.

A range of other awards were presented to the various category winners, while David Locke was presented with the Mayoral Award for 2020.

For more than 40 years, David has cared for and rescued injured and sick fauna and wildlife in the Lockyer Valley.

"David has contributed tirelessly, with both time and money, to the environment and preservation of fauna.

"He is also a committed member of the Laidley SES and an extremely worthwhile recipient of this award. 

"I decided to present David the Mayoral Award this year for his commitment to rescuing sick and injured wildlife and given the devastating impact of the fires across Australia, it was a choice close to my heart.

"David received commendation from both the former Laidley Shire Council Mayor, Cr Shirley Pitt and former Lockyer Valley Regional Council Mayor, Cr Steve Jones AM, so it is an honour to formally acknowledge and recognise David at our 2020 Australia Day celebration," Mayor Milligan said.

The Awards were part of an entertaining day right across the region. There was also an array of entertainment at the Laidley Pioneer Village and Museum and the Gatton and District Historical Society as well as many other community and commercial venues throughout the region.

List of the Lockyer Valley Australia Day Award recipients are:

Citizen of the Year: Neil and Gae Simpson

Young Citizen of the Year: Michaela Kammholz

Junior Sports Award: Mitchell Toohey

Arts and Cultural Award: Lockyer Regional Performing Arts Inc.

Community Event of the Year: Gatton Hawks Anzac Day Match

Community / Sporting Group of the Year: Lockyer Valley Rural Fire Brigade Group

Volunteer of the Year: Valma Evans

Mayoral Award: David Locke

Page reviewed: 28 Jan 2020 6:00pm