Waverley Council paid tribute this week to our dedicated community workers and volunteers at the 2023 Waverley Local Hero and Best of the Best Awards held at North Bondi Surf Club.

The awards celebrate and recognise the achievements and contributions of those in the community who volunteer their time and go above and beyond to ensure Waverley is a resilient, caring and cohesive community.

Mayor of Waverley, Paula Masselos, said the community members honoured in the Awards all play a vital role in fostering social cohesion, addressing local needs and improving the quality of life for residents.

“They make Waverley a better place to live, work and visit, by giving their time, lending a helping hand and providing expertise,” Mayor Masselos said.

Turbans 4 AustraliaThis external link will open in a new window founder and Australian of the year 2023 Local Hero, Amar SinghThis external link will open in a new window, was guest speaker at the awards and shared his insights about banding together as a community to help people in need.

“Amar is a great believer that helping others should not be limited by religion, language or cultural background, and it’s a view we share at Waverley, where one in five residents speak a language other than English and 40 per cent of residents were born overseas.”

This year’s Local Hero Awards included the Best of the Best Award, bestowed every four years to outstanding community leaders, and whose names will be included in plaques along our Best of the Best walk along the Bondi and Bronte Beach promenades.

Waverley Council is delighted to announce the following winners and runners-up:


Award winner

Certificate of Commendation

Strengthening Community

Sebastian Cassie

Anthia Kollaras

Community Volunteer

William Harrigan

Adam Nezval

Working Together

Research Team at Waverley Historical Society

The P2F Wise

Community Life

Elisabeth Keys

Ingrid Studholme

Second Nature Champion

Langlee Lane Community Garden

Louise Murray

Young Local Hero

Dallas Pumpa-Jones

Wise Youth

Best of the Best

Peter Quartly

Best of the Best

Brenda Miley

Outstanding Community Contribution

Waverley-Woollahra SES

“My fellow judging panel members and I, Councillors Sally Betts and Elaine Keenan, had a very difficult time choosing tonight’s award winners from an amazing pool of nominees,” Mayor Masselos said.

“There are so many people in our community that deserve a massive thank-you and recognition for the selfless work that they do.”

The Council also acknowledged the more than 120 volunteers who have contributed their time to enhance Council programs and services, the environment, and community cohesion in the past 12 months.

“We have volunteers represented in a range of Council areas including Community Programs, Bushcare, Arts and Culture, Children’s Services, Events, Library Services, Seniors Centre, Shared Garden Groups, Justices of the Peace, the Cemetery, and more,” Mayor Masselos said.

“We know Waverley is a very giving and caring community, with 16% of residents volunteering their time, which is significantly higher than Greater Sydney and NSW average.”

“Volunteerism helps drive change and we had a room of change makers at our awards presentation this week.

“Again, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to our Waverley volunteers and Local Hero nominees for their unwavering dedication and selfless service to our community.”

The Welcome to Country was performed by Uncle Lloyd Walker of the Gujaga FoundationThis external link will open in a new window.

Be sure to check out our photo gallery from the night on Waverley Council’s website in the coming days.