Olympic champion to recognise Liverpool’s best on Australia Day

Liverpool City Council today announced Olympic water polo medallist, Debbie Watson OAM OLY will lead this year’s Council Australia Day celebrations which will include an Awards and Citizenship Ceremony at Casula Powerhouse Arts Centre.

One of the nation’s greatest water polo players, Ms Watson’s career spanned 17 years at the elite level after becoming a member of the national team in 1983. She captained Australia to World Cup and World Championship victories and was an integral part of the Australian women’s team which created history by winning gold at the 2000 Sydney Olympics.

Mayor of Liverpool Ned Mannoun expressed how proud Liverpool was to an Australia Day Ambassador of Ms Watson’s calibre.

“For a community as rich in culture as Liverpool is, Australia Day holds a special place in the hearts of our residents,” Mayor Mannoun said.

“We’re delighted to have Ms Watson as our Australia Day Ambassador. She helped rewrite the history of water polo in Australia and guided our nation’s sporting success at an international level – showing what can be achieved with grit, determination, and passion.

“Her achievements and merits beyond the pool speak volumes too. Ms Watson continues to enrich the sport of water polo through her influence of younger generations in the roles of water polo coach, teacher and motivational speaker.

“This year’s recipients of the Australia Day Awards embody many of the same wonderful qualities Ms Watson has displayed throughout her career.”

Nine awards will be presented to individuals, businesses and groups who have made outstanding contributions to the Liverpool community across health, sport, business, culture and arts, and environmental conservation.

Alongside the awards presentation, Council will help 20 members of the Liverpool community receive their Australian Citizenship.

“Our celebrations are as much about the 150 distinct cultures that call Liverpool home, as the one culture that unites us all – being Australian,” said Mayor Mannoun. “I’m pleased to have the opportunity to personally welcome these new citizens into our community and congratulate those making Liverpool a better place to live, work and play each and every day.

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