Media Release: December 11, 2015
Awards Announced for Two Passionate Ambassadors for Tourism in Port Stephens
A Port Stephens businesswoman behind a bid to boost the region’s weddings market and an entrepreneurial surfer who promotes watersports in Port Stephens and supports surflifesaving and charities in the area have been recognised by two special awards honouring personal contribution to the local tourism industry.
Ange Pobie, who set up the Love Port Stephens Wedding Tourism Action Group this year and owns Colorfast Printing at Salamander Bay and Papertales Wedding Stationery, won the Robyn Shaw Personal Contribution to Tourism Award. The accolade is awarded by Destination Port Stephens every year to a passionate individual who has made a major contribution to the local tourism industry. The award is made in memory of Robyn Shaw, a former local tourism board member who worked tenaciously to build the appeal of Port Stephens.
Ms Pobie, a passionate and motivated business leader, is steering the Love Port Stephens Wedding Tourism Action Group to support local wedding suppliers and encourage more couples to say ‘I do’ in the region to expand the local visitor economy.
The second award winner was Luke Michalak, the owner of the Port Stephens Surf School. Mr Michalak received Destination Port Stephens’ annual Tony Burrell Enthusiasm Scholarship Award for individuals who display extraordinary passion and enthusiasm for their work. The award, which carries a $1000 prize, is in memory of Tony Burrell who oversaw the debut of quad bikes on the Port Stephens sand dunes in the 1990s.
Port Stephens Surf School offers kids, mums and corporate groups specialised learn-to-surf programs as well as general lessons for males and females of all ages. The school has recently launched Stand Up Paddleboarding and Stand Up Yoga sessions and also sponsors local surf training programs and supports charity events.
Rebecca Morley from Destination Port Stephens described Ms Pobie and Mr Michalak as passionate ambassadors for Port Stephens’ growing $400 million-a-year visitor economy.
“Both Ange and Luke invested an incredible amount of time and effort into building and broadening our vital visitor economy while also supporting fellow businesses and the community. Destination Port Stephens sincerely thanks these two special individuals for their part in making Port Stephens such a wonderful and popular destination today,” Ms Morley said.