La Trobe NAIDOC awards recognise work of community heroes

Tammy Campbell celebrated with friends Leonie McIntosh, who won scholar of the year at the La Trobe NAIDOC Awards, and Ruth Davys at The Cube last night. Picture: JOHN RUSSELL

Tammy Campbell celebrated with friends Leonie McIntosh, who won scholar of the year at the La Trobe NAIDOC Awards, and Ruth Davys at The Cube last night. Picture: JOHN RUSSELL

IT takes many people to create a community.

That was the attitude winners of the 2014 La Trobe NAIDOC Awards displayed at the event last night.

About 150 people were at The Cube, Wodonga, to recognise indigenous people excelling in the community.

Leonie McIntosh won scholar of the year and said it was overwhelming.

Ms McIntosh is an indigenous academic fellow at Charles Sturt University and teaches visual arts and Aboriginal perspective classes in the early childhood degree.

She is also completing her doctorate.

“I am humble I am able to go to school considering the challenges our elders have experienced,” she said.

“I’m just passionate about children and education.”

Ms McIntosh said it was important to celebrate the achievements of everybody in the community.

Alongside Ms McIntosh was Kylie Whitehead, who was named sports- person of the year.

She is in the senior Victorian team for lawn bowls and has won three state championships.

“The award is recognition of our hard work and the hours you put in,” she said.

Uncle Ken “Tunny” Murray was named elder of the year and he described himself as an “undercover worker”, with departments of community services and education.

“I do it because I love it and I’m concerned for our people,” he said.

The Uncle Arthur Melrose encouragement award went to Larissa Moffitt and the appreciation award to Shri McMillan.

Awards were also won by Bec Willis for community person of the year, and Tahlia Biggs for youth of the year.

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