Citizen of the Year - Colleen McTaggart
Congratulations to Colleen McTaggart for taking out the Australia Day award for Katherine's Citizen of the Year 2020.
Colleen has made a significant contribution to Katherine through her leadership roles in Katherine South Primary School Council, Katherine Show Society, Katherine Athletics Club and St Josephs Catholic College. Not to mention the mammoth effort Colleen puts into organising and running the Debutante Ball each year, all while working full-time. Colleen is someone who has a passion for Katherine and has become an integral member of the community.
Growing up in Katherine in a time when locals including my parents were very involved with different community groups instilled in me the importance of being a part of the community. It is important to me that sporting groups and other community organisations are able to operate year after year due to the volunteers that give their time to help out.
Last year was a big year as I was involved with Katherine South Primary School, The Katherine Athletics Club, The Katherine Show Society and I organised the Katherine Debutante Ball.
Doing all of these things allowed me the opportunity to meet so many people and to see that there is a small but very dedicated group of people that continually volunteer their time to make sure our kids and the wider community have access to lots of fun things that can lead to better self-esteem, communication skills and sense of community.
When I was a child I baked things to enter into the show every year which is something I continued as a teenager and adult. I now love watching my children create and bake their entries and see their faces at their entry on display. As a steward of the Cooking pavilion I am seeing the next 2 generations engage in a wonderful event that allows the whole of Katherine to come together and socialize. Having our station families come to town really proves that whilst Katherine gets a bad rap sometimes, if you put aside the negative we can all see what an incredible privilege it is to live in this town.
People often say to me “how do you do it all”, sometimes when I have had 2 -3 meetings after hours in a week I think “what am I doing this for” but the results have been an incredible Debutante Ball, Fundraising for much needed items at a school or encouraging more people to have a go and put entries into the show. Being away from my kids and husband was at times very difficult whilst also juggling full time work but my family and my colleagues know it’s just what I need to do.
We have many unsung community members in Katherine – Trent De With, Jason Scadden, David and Angela Flood, Annette Schefe, Ron Green, Simmone Croft & John Leo, to name a few. I can only encourage more people to give an hour here or there for the sporting club your kids are in, the school they attend or the fellow Katherine community member that needs a helping hand.
I encourage everyone to not just say it but actually do it, get involved the worst that can happen is you will meet some incredible people!
- Colleen McTaggart