David Oliphant is our 2023 Local Hero

Published: 20 November 2023

A humble man who prefers working quietly behind the scenes, David Oliphant is Eurobodalla’s 2023 Local Hero.

Mr Oliphant received his award at the Mayor’s Ball, a new event initiated by Mathew Hatcher to celebrate volunteers and volunteering across the shire, with proceeds going to a charity selected by the Mayor.

“I chose Monty’s Place as this year’s charity,” Mayor Hatcher said.

“Every Wednesday the team at Monty’s in Narooma serve up a free, two-course community meal. While money is still coming in, we plan to buy and install a new industrial-grade oven at Monty’s from the charity ball proceeds and donations.”

Mayor Hatcher said “it was a happy coincidence” that the 2023 Local Hero was also an initial driving force behind Monty’s Place.

“David has served countless volunteer hours over 25 years in Eurobodalla. Not only setting up and finding the funding for Monty’s Place but also providing pastoral and spiritual care at hospitals and aged-care facilities, teaching communications skills and group work, and as a member of the Gulaga Reconciliation Group, the Elmgrove Sanctuary Trust and the Tilba Open Sanctuary Group. And more,” Mayor Hatcher said.

“Extensively qualified, David’s philosophy for pastoral care in a multi-faith world is all about encouraging dialogue and working relations with practical outcomes.”

There was a strong group of nominees at the Narooma Golf Club on Friday 17 November. Other contenders for Eurobodalla’s 2023 Local Hero were Cameron Condon, James Fraser, Michelle Hamrosi, Nanette Morton, Michelle Nickson, Jordan Nye, Susan Rowland and the late Lei Parker.

To the delight of the 90 plus ball attendees, Mayor Hatcher invited 2EC radio personality Kimmi Saker to cohost the inaugural event. 2EC joined sister station PowerFM Bega Bay, along with Watson Blinds and Awnings, and Mystery Bay cottages as sponsors.

“Thanks to sponsor backing we enjoyed a night of good food, great company and much merriment while celebrating and supporting our shire’s volunteers,” Mayor Hatcher said.

“I’m looking forward to doing it all again in 2024. Next time, it’s Moruya’s turn.”

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