NSW State Emergency Service (SES) volunteers from the Central Coast, Lake Macquarie and Coastal Hunter regions have been recognised for their outstanding service at two awards ceremonies.

Seventy-nine volunteers, with a combined total of 915 years of service, received awards, medals and clasps for their commitment to volunteering and supporting their communities.

The Lake Macquarie and Hunter Coast Cluster Awards, held on Sunday 25 February, included volunteers from Cooranbong, Lake Macquarie City, Swansea, City of Newcastle, Port Stephens and Tomaree Units.

The Central Coast Cluster Awards, held on Saturday 24 February, included volunteers from Gosford and Wyong Units.

NSW SES Deputy Commissioner Daniel Austin, who attended both ceremonies, said the long-serving members were an example to all NSW SES volunteers.

“There’s nothing the NSW SES values more than our people. Those who are receiving awards today exemplify the standards by which we hold ourselves and the dedication to serving our community,” Deputy Commissioner Austin said.

Among the recipients was Christine Speer, the Local Commander of the NSW SES Lake Macquarie City Cluster.

Christine Speer was awarded lifetime membership of the NSW SES, in recognition of her outstanding contribution over a prolonged period.

Christine Speer joined the service 42 years ago.

Also recognised was the NSW SES Wyong Unit, which received the Commissioner’s Certificate of Recognition for support during the March 2021 floods.

The March 2021 floods were one of four major floods that impacted the Central Coast region in 2021 and 2022.

“It was in these events that the SES volunteers of the Central Coast showed their character,” Deputy Commissioner Austin said.

“We have seen incredible acts of service, bravery and community spirit over the years, and I am pleased to be able to join in recognising and celebrating these wonderful volunteers.”

Other recipients include Andrew Warnest from the Wyong Unit, who received a National Medal. He deployed to Eugowra in the aftermath of the record flooding that struck the town in October 2022 and was thanked for his service to the community.

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