News, Events and Culture

Civic Awards 1988 and 1989

Read about recipients of our city's highest honour.

1989 recipients

John Kamariera

Civic Awards - 1989 - John Kamariera

"As we journey through life, we come in contact with people, who, by their example, leave a lasting impression on us. One such person in my life has been John Kamaiera, whom I have known for thirty-eight years.

A man I admire for his strong Christian faith, his strength, his taha Māori blending in with his taha Pakeha. He is a bridge builder of his time, being dedicated to promote goodwill among all people." The words of Hapai Winiata, Assistant Bishop of Wellington. He served overseas with the Māori Battalion during the Second World War and was invalided home in 1943.

He subsequently acquired a farm at Whakaronga, from which he and Eunice raised eight children and participated in many community activities. John Kamariera's interests have been across a wide front, serving on local school and hall committees, Parent-Teachers Associations and on the Boy Scouts Committee for ten years.

In 1968 he was appointed by the Justice Department to be an official Māori interpreter and was later made a Justice of the Peace in recognition of his example and high public image. One of his major projects has been in the assisting of the founding of the Te Reo Māori course at Massey University and for fourteen years was responsible for the tutorial work carried on there.

He is a foundation member of Paneke, an access funded community development and training organisation and still serves on that Board as its highly respected kaumatua. He is a foundation member of St Michael's Church vestry and its senior lay reader. He is Chairman of the Kaumatua Council formed in Palmerston North, as well as being Chairman of the Taitokerau Whanui Iwi, which is based in Palmerston North.

John Kamariera has a wonderful record of public service to this city and his own community, given in his quiet and dignified manner and in a true voluntary spirit. The respect for this man and his efforts for all people is widely shared by both Māori and Pakeha communities who know and work with him. He is a strong supporter of both multiculturalism and Kia Kaha, Kia Kotahira - our strength is in our unity.

Pauline Keyes

Civic Awards - 1989 - Pauline Keys

Mrs Pauline Keyes has given distinctive service in not one, but in four major areas of the qualifying categories. Under education and youth activities she has spent nineteen years actively promoting the development of the free kindergarten movement in the Manawatū, serving in most executive positions at that level, and also at national level.

Through recreation, she has spent ten years involved with tennis, keep fit and preschool gymnastics at the YMCA. Under community affairs, she has been involved in city promotion, city beautification and, with Mrs Seifert, became a founder member of the Riverside Walkway and Bridle Track Committee.

As our city planner has often stated, she never accepts that something cannot be done and on many occasions she has rearranged Council's own priorities to accommodate her ideas. And although I probably should not tell you this, it is alleged that she commandeered a bulldozer on one occasion to prevent it destroying something that she considered of value. Altogether, an outstanding recital of public work.

John Schwabe

Civic Awards - 1989 - John Schwabe

John Schwabe is a player, composer and arranger of orchestral music, producer, musical director, musical school director, music administrator and musician extraordinare.

A lifetime given to music - a statement often made as some form of a compliment but rarely matched quite as literally as I invite you now to accept. There have been three major submissions supported by nineteen accompanying testimonials that displayed the extraordinary involvement John Schwabe has had in every aspect of music in this community in the last twenty years.

I was relieved to discover that he has other interests outside of the immediate area of teaching, producing, arranging, composing, playing and directing music. He makes and repairs musical instruments. He has even built his own harpsicord for authentic baroque peiformances.
The musical attributes of the city have been greatly enriched by John Schwabe.

1988 recipients

Rita Auta 

Mrs Rita Auta has made a total commitment to pacific Island People over the last ten years. She was a foundation member of the Palmerston North branch of Pasifica and has worked to provide counselling services and liaison skills with a wide variety of educational, health, welfare, labour, justice and housing agencies.

She is a member of COGS and also a member of the National Selection Committee for the distribution of funds for the Ministry of Women's Affairs. She is also employed as a liaison officer with the Manawatu Polytechnic as is a Minister of the Eucharist. Her untiring and ceaseless work for her people is carried out to achieve better understanding and racial harmony between European, Maori and Pacific people.

Jo Bewley

Mrs Jo Bewley's community life spans a period of twenty years, with service as a part-time lecturer at Massey, Secondary School teacher and various P.T.A's. However, her more public activities probably resulted from her membership in Zonta Club, through which she has participated in a number of major projects, the most noticeable being in her involvement with the Ryder-Cheshire Foundation.

From being a foundation member, she became the leading figure in the major fund-raising committee that resulted in the construction of the home. She continued her involvement with the organisation throughout its furnishing and indeed, in its day-to-day administration since then. In between all these activities, she has been actively involved with the Manawatu Art Gallery, the All Saints Church and is a life member of the Manawatu museum Society.

Fay Burns 

Mrs Fay Burns was introduced to Birthright twenty-eight years ago and has served that organisation for almost all of that time in a variety of very demanding roles - no the least of which being a period on a committee giving one or two mornings a week for at least ten years.

She is currently a Vice-President and long term member of the Palmerston North Horticultural Floral Art Club, from which she successfully supported the Hospice appeal with two major fundraising projects - "Wedding of the Year" and "Spring Time at Ascot".

She is also a valued member, announcer and presenter of the Hospital radio team and has given much time over a long period to the Hospital Library Service, and with some superhuman effort has spent some nine years as the Secretary of the Terrace End Scouts.

Pat Kelliher 

Pat Kelliher needs no introduction to Palmerstonians and has also received a Queen's Honour for his thirty-five years of service to local government.

What is probably less public knowledge was that in 1959 Pat Kelliher became an inaugural member of a consultative committee formed as a result of a discussion document circulated by Internal Affairs and from which the Civil Defence Organisation was ultimately formed.

He gave thirty years of service and for many of them chairing the Civil Defence Committee. He also held the position of Controller for ten years. This service is probably without parallel in any other place in New Zealand and represents hundreds of hours of voluntary work.

Andy Ryan

Andy Ryan has been selected for this award principally for his association with Ozanam House. At one time President and currently secretary of the St Vincent de Paul Society, Andy Ryan has been associated with many charitable works of that society, but when the idea of Ozanam House became a reality twenty-one years ago, he became a foundation trustee and more recently its Chairman.

His personal effort to the St Vincent de Paul Society and more particularly, his devotion to the Spirit of Ozanam House has been quite exceptional.

Robyn Vining

Mrs Robyn Vining has been selected for her services to the Order of St John, over a period of twenty-eight years and you would not be wrong in concluding that she must have started at a very young age.

She has excelled in her leadership of young people, with her cadets winning national competition awards on at least six occasions - some small recognition for the hundreds of hours that she has spent teaching and coaching young people.

She has also spent a few years as a coach of the Milson Junior Soccer Team, and also currently serves on the executive of the Crippled Childrens Society.

Bob Wallace

Bob Wallace has been a member of the Red Cross Society for over forty years and has served on its executive for thirty years, and more recently as its president.

He has held positions as the vice-president and has been the recipient of the Red Cross Merit for outstanding service. His interest in the community has been outstanding and his knowledge of first aid has been so extensive that he was on the Palmerston North Hospital Ambulance Auxilliary for Volunteers.

His involvement in Red Cross has been wide and extensive and his first aid experience has served a wide range of sporting and cultural events over that incredibly long period.