Australia Day Awards

Co-founder of The Sanctuary_ The Hills Women’s Shelter and former Hills Mayor Yvonne Keane has been appointed an AM in the Australia Day Honours List.

The Kellyville resident (pictured) was nominated for her significant service to women and children and those who are deaf or hard of hearing.

She told the Hills to Hawkesbury Community News that she was stunned by the honour and urged people to make the time to nominate worthy candidates for the awards.

“You never expect something like this. I was stunned and quite overwhelmed when I received notification from the Governor General’s office. I had to re-read it twice. It still hasn’t quite sunk in.

“More than anything I’m struck by the generosity involved in nominating me. Someone had to take a great deal of time to prepare and submit the nomination. That is such a selfless and generous thing to do.”

“Whilst the Governor General, quite rightly, is focused on ensuring that there is a better balance of diversity for future award recipients, this can only happen if we are actually taking a moment to nominate the amazing women and indigenous Australians around us.

“I know in my own community there are many, many unsung heroes. So, let’s be generous and take the time to nominate those around us who give so much to shape our communities and, indeed, our nation.”

Mrs Keane who is Chief Executive Officer of Early Childhood Intervention Australia and Deputy Chair of the Endeavour Foundation, founded the Hear the Children Early Intervention Centre which is now part of the Royal Institute for Deaf and Blind Children.

The mother-of-two was one of seven locals who were named in today’s honour roll.

OAMs were awarded to:

Frank Deane from Castle Hill for service to people with a disability and to the community.

Chair of Foresight Australia, the retired solicitor has been a volunteer with several organisations for over 40 years.

Perry Gilsenan from Baulkham Hills was awarded his OAM for service to people with Down syndrome. He was the founder of the fundraiser The Scrapheap Adventure Ride.

The late Rita Little from Kellyville, President of the Jack Russell Terrier Club of NSW, author and registered breeder was named in the honours list for service to animal welfare and to canine breeding clubs. She passed away early last year.

Lynn McCrindle from Pennant Hills was awarded an OAM for service to children and to education. A volunteer at West Pennant Hills Community Church for over 50 years, she was a teacher and then board member at Pacific Hills Christian School and a volunteer with the Crossroads program and Christian Mission International Aid.

David Rosenberg from Kenthurst was awarded an OAM for service to publishing. He founded Kangaroo Press more than 40 years ago and founded Rosenberg Publishing in 2002.

Anyone can nominate any Australian for an award in the Order of Australia. If you know someone worthy, nominate them now at

Local Plumber