‘Joy-ful Knight’ for Citizen of the Year
There was no disputing the community adored the announcement of Joy Knight as the Jerilderie Citizen of the Year on Saturday night.
As matriarch of the Knight family, the 72 year-old has been a volunteer with numerous organisations including Jerilderie Public School Ladies Auxiliary, Finley High School P&C, Jerilderie Football and Netball Clubs, Uniting Church Flower Show, Jerilderie United Hospitals Auxiliary and Development of Lake Jerilderie group.
In her speech on Saturday night she thanked her family and community for their supporting over her time in the small town and gave a special mention to her husband of 54 years.
‘‘I’m very honoured and humble that I’ve received this award and really do appreciate it,’’ Mrs Knight said.
‘‘My entire family are here with me tonight and that makes it even more special because my family over the years has put up with me, carried things, moved things and perhaps been organised by me.
‘‘They’ve done it with great pride and happiness I think; I do appreciate that.
‘‘Arthur (Joy’s husband) is perhaps a steady influence on me. When I’ve had some hair brain ideas he’s said quietly, ‘think about it’, and I’ve thought about it.
‘‘Sometimes it’s worked and sometimes it hasn’t but Arthur has always supported and encouraged me in everything I wanted to do.
‘‘All awards are given to individuals but no individual can get an award without support.
‘‘My CWA and friends have worked with and beside me and I really do appreciate that.
‘‘This award is for them because they have been the ones who have enabled me to participate in the various organisations.’’
Originally moving from Shepparton in 1965 with Arthur, the couple and parents of five have called Jerilderie home ever since.
‘‘The community of Jerilderie is wonderful and really rewarding (to live in),’’ Mrs Knight said.
‘‘It takes a village to raise a child, but it takes a village to make a community too.
‘‘There are some great people here and it’s a fabulous community.’’
The grandmother of seven has contributed more than 40 years with the local Uniting Church and has been involved with helping to run the annual Jerilderie Flower Show.
‘‘The flower show has been running in Jerilderie for many years and I have been a steward for that time,’’ Mrs Knight said.
‘‘It was run by the Presbyterian Church and now by the Uniting Church, and it’s always successful.
‘‘It’s a country thing and everyone puts in. . . we’ve had judges say it’s better than some of the top shows.’’
While being a member with the CWA Jerilderie Branch for 12 years, she has served the last five years as president.
Mrs Knight is still remembered by many local ladies for running Brownies for 15 years.
‘‘We had girls from seven to 12 and a full pack of 24. I would take them camping into shearing quarters and it was a really rewarding time.
‘‘What made it special was seeing the development of the girls. Even to this day I run into them and they remark ‘oh my shoes aren’t clean’,’’ she said with a laugh.
Testimonials provided in support of Mrs Knight’s nomination provide insight into her generosity, spirit and her capacity to organise people and events, yet never losing sight of the need for everyone to be heard and respected.
Described as a selfless person who not only invests heavily in her town and community, Mrs Knight is generous in giving her time to assist her family and friends.