Eurobodalla’s Green Army supervisor Damon Lane picked up a Supervisor of the Year Award and Moruya’s Billy-Ray Davis-Wilson won Green Army Aboriginal Participant of the Year Award at Skillset’s annual awards on the weekend.
Mr Lane started with the Eurobodalla Council-hosted and federal-government funded Green Army in 2015. He led five local teams and had the highest participation completion rate, with only one person out of 35 not completing the program.
He now works casually in Council’s environment team and said the key to his and his teams’ success was having empathy and understanding of people’s different backgrounds creating a work culture of mutual respect.
“I was exceptionally lucky to have such motivated and eager participants throughout my time in the Green Army,” he said.
“The majority of our participants have gone on to permanent employment, which is a fantastic result.
“It’s a shame that the federal-government funding ended. The program achieved real outcomes for both the environment and the participants in Eurobodalla.”
Mr Lane said the award was “a nice pat on the back for something I was passionate about anyway”.
Billy-Ray was recognised for his leadership skills, strong work ethic and desire to increase his knowledge and practical skills.
Mr Lane said Billy-Ray was always eager to share knowledge of history and country, which led to a better understanding of Indigenous culture within the team.
“Billy-Ray is an outstanding role model - he was an exceptional participant, enthusiastic, willing to learn and an invaluable member of the Eurobodalla Green Army Team,” he said.
Council’s Natural Resource Supervisor Heidi Thomson said that losing the Green Army program was a loss to Council’s team.
“Damon’s teams were able to tick off a lot from our environmental project wishlist,” she said.
“They undertook most of their work on Council land, including erosion control projects, tree planting, weed control and environmental monitoring. They also assisted local Landcare groups. They were able to complete jobs that we wouldn’t have had funding to otherwise do.
“The awards are well deserved and we’re grateful to have such passionate and capable people in the industry.”
Above: Green Army Billy-Ray Davis Wilson: Skillset Environment Green Army ATSI Participant of the Year Billy-Ray Davis Wilson (centre) with Skillset Environment Senior Manager Ashley Bland and Bill Allen.
Green Army - Damon Lane: Skillset Environment Green Army Team Supervisor of the Year Damon Lane (centre) with Skillset Environment Senior Manager Ashley Bland and Parkes Shire Councillor Allan Ward.