My Beach

The category winners of Surf Life Saving WA’s annual Awards of Excellence, held in June, go on to proudly represent WA at Surf Life Saving Australia’s National Awards of Excellence; where SLSA recognises the hard work, selflessness and enthusiasm of volunteers across Australia.

This year, the National Awards of Excellence will be celebrated at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney on 4 November.

You’ve met all of our finalists through their Q&A’s, heard a little about their stories and why surf lifesaving means so much to them. However, just in case you wanted to catch up, here is a recap of all of our incredible, inspirational finalists who will proudly represent their Clubs and WA on 4 November. Good luck to you all!

We would also like to say a big congratulations to Lyla Hall, Siobhan Hall, Jessica Williams and Garry Williams from Secret Harbour Surf Life Saving Club & Peel Support Operations, who will be presented with a Meritorious Award at the SLSA Awards of Excellence for their rescue of two abalone fishermen in November 2016.

Category: Assessor of the Year
Finalist: Anne-Marie Widermanski
Club: Mullaloo Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Anne-Marie was not only our Assessor of the Year in 2017; she also took out both the state and national title in 2016! Full Q&A



Category: Official of the Year
Finalist: Carolyn Wilson
Club: Secret Harbour Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Carolyn is a nurse and officiating extraordinaire. In 2017, she became the back-to-back winner of Official of the Year for SLSWA. Full Q&A



Category: Trainer of the Year
Finalist: Chris Kuster
Club: Scarboro Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Chris was recently appointed to Chair of the WA Alumni Group, and is looking to raise the profile of the SLSA National Leadership College and past college and masterclass participants. Full Q&A


Category: Coach of the Year
Finalist: Jenny Plint
Club: Sorrento Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Jenny never did athletics or sprints at school, being told she “looked like a baby horse” when she ran, but now she’s not only a beach athlete, she also coaches some of the State’s top beach athletes! Full Q&A


Category: Open Athlete of the Year
Finalist: Jackson Symonds
Club: Sorrento Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Jackson is the SLSWA back-to-back Open Athlete of the Year and 2017 Bernie Kelly Medalist, with an interesting superstition about only having three Weetbix before a carnival. Full Q&A


Category: Youth Athlete of the Year
Finalist: Charlie Rigby
Club: Sorrento Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Charlie started surf lifesaving eight years ago, after his family moved to Australia from England. Now, Charlie is a top beach athlete who is hot on the heels of his fellow “beachie” and club member, Jackson Symonds. Full Q&A


Category: Lifesaver of the Year
Finalist: Adam Hoes
Club: Mandurah Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Adam grew up 180km from the nearest beach, but since moving to Bunbury at 13 and joining surf lifesaving, he has performed more than 1,800 patrol hours. Full Q&A



Category: Volunteer of the Year
Finalist: Blair Walkington
Club: Geraldton Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Blair grew up in Perth, where he went to the beach every now and then, before moving to Geraldton for his work as a career firefighter just seven years ago. He joined the local surf club to meet people in town and fell in love with the beach and lifesaving. Full Q&A

Category: Club of the Year
Finalist: Coogee Beach Surf Life Saving Club
Fact: Coogee Beach SLSC were formally affiliated with SLSWA in 2003, making them one of the younger Clubs involved in surf lifesaving in WA. Full Q&A