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RFSA 2016 Honours and Awards Recipients Announced

The Association was pleased to announce the 2016 Honours and Awards recipients at a presentation ceremony conducted at the State Council Meeting on June 17, 2017. 

The award recipients were:
Young Member of the Year
Benjamin Albers
Member of the Year
David Turner
Life Member
Diane Bennett OAM

Showing a great interest in all the activities of the RFSA, the 2016 Young Member of the Year Benjamin Albers, is an ideal candidate for future leadership roles within the NSW Rural Fire Service and the RFSA. 


At 21 years of age Ben has been Secretary of the Hills Branch for the past two years and has recently been re-elected for another term. He is also the Branch Delegate to Division 4.


At the Hills Branch, Ben communicates with members about meetings, sends out minutes and checks on member welfare.  He was also instrumental in forming the RFSA The Hills Branch Young Member Group and is a regular attendee at Division 4 meetings.


Recognised for his commitment over many years, the 2016 Member of the Year David Turner is a member of Goombargana Rural Fire Brigade and has dedicated considerable effort to re-engaging current members and encouraging new members in the Southern Border Branch of RFSA Division 13.


Within the Division he has maintained dual roles for a number of years, performing the role of Division 13 Secretary as well as serving as the Division’s State Council Delegate.


David has been instrumental in the development of a Riverina Cadet Field Day and inviting relevant and informative guest speakers to Branch meetings. He is always enthusiastic about the work of the RFSA and has actively supported members seeking help and assistance with RFSA programs, most especially grants.


RFSA Life Member Diane Bennett OAM was inducted for her long-time involvement and dedication to the RFSA.  An active member in the Dungog and Lower Hunter Branches since the 1990s, Diane continues her involvement as Secretary of the Lower Hunter Branch. 


In 2007, Diane became Delegate to the RFSA State Council holding this position until 2010 when ill health prompted her to stand down,  However,  Diane did not let this set back affect her enthusiasm and she continued to remain an active member of the Branch.


Diane has always publically represented the views of her fellow volunteer fire fighters and without her involvement, the RFSA within the Hunter, Manning, Great Lakes and Gloucester Districts would not be as structured and resilient, or have the capacity to advocate for its membership as it does today.


Always leading by example, Diane was awarded an Order of Australia (OAM) for her contributions to the NSW RFS, RFSA and the community. 


All three awardees are worthy recipients of the RFSA’s highest honours and the Association congratulates Benjamin, David and Diane on their recognition and achievement.   


Young Member of the Year Benjamin Albers



Member of the Year David Turner



Life Member Diane Bennett OAM