Decades of service to the community did not go unnoticed for Malcolm Watt when he was named the Shepparton Australia Day Citizen of the Year.ESTELLE GRIEPINK January 27, 2014 4:32am
He’s known all over Shepparton for his commitment to community service, but Malcolm Watt was caught off guard yesterday when he was named the Shepparton Australia Day Citizen of the Year.
‘‘I’m feeling pretty surprised, it’s unreal,’’ Mr Watt said.
‘‘I knew I’d been nominated, so that’s why I came — normally I go to Mooroopna.’’
Mr Watt is originally from Mooroopna, but he has called Shepparton home for the past three decades.
‘‘I was born and bred in Mooroopna, and I will return there — I’ve been in Shepparton for about 30 years, so just temporarily,’’ he joked.
During that time, Mr Watt has worked at The Bridge Youth Service for more than 18 years, been a Greater Shepparton Basketball Association referee for more than 40 years, and a Shepparton Central Rotary Club member for 29 years, where he has been president and secretary.
He is a past Master of the Mooroopna Masonic Lodge and GV Mark Lodge and has had extensive involvement in Shepparton East Football Netball Club and Mooroopna Football Club.
Throughout it all, he has also maintained his loyalty to Collingwood Football Club with 40 years of membership.
Mr Watt said he found giving back incredibly rewarding.
He thanked his parents for inspiring him to make a difference in his community.
‘‘It’s always been a thrill for me to work with young people, and working at The Bridge has been an opportunity to work with our local young people,’’ he said.
‘‘It’s very nice to be renumerated for the work that I do, but in the end you end up doing it because you love it.’’
Mr Watt was nominated for the award by members of The Bridge Youth Service, who commended him for being thoughtful and selfless.
Community development officer Jamie Lea said Mr Watt’s work deserved to be recognised.
‘‘He’s very generous, giving, considerate, and always does more than he needs to,’’ Ms Lea said.
‘‘The list of his volunteering and contribution to the community is extensive.’’
For more of our Australia Day coverage, grab a copy of today’s paper.
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