ACCOLADE: Emerald's citizen of the year, Selwyn Nutley.
ACCOLADE: Emerald's citizen of the year, Selwyn Nutley.

Emerald man decorated as citizen of the year

CITIZEN of the year Selwyn Nutley thought he would be in Emerald for three weeks. That was in 1968.

“I played football,” he said. “I played Rugby League, lived in a caravan for a while, and then I decided to build a house here.

“1974 I built that.”

Mr Nutley was awarded citizen of the year at the Emerald Australia Day Awards ceremony on Sunday.

He was recognised as a long-time contributor to the town, a lifetime member of the Emerald Golf Club and the Central Highlands Rugby League Referee Association, and a steadfast friend.

“I’ve done a lot of work at the golf club,” Mr Nutley said.

“I can’t sit at home doing nothing, so as soon as I retired I did a lot.

“When we had the floods I helped out. When something’s broken, I usually fix it.”

Selwyn with his family.
Selwyn with his family.

Last year, Mr Nutley contributed thousands of dollars to animal rescue organisation CQ Pet Rescue through Containers for Change.

“I’ve taken dogs and cats away to Brisbane to other homes,” he said.

“Now I’ve been doing the container collection. We got over $15,000 last year and we’re well on the way this year.”

Mr Nutley said volunteering was the best thing he has ever done, aside from marrying his wife Ethel in 1995.

Selwyn and Ethel Nutley.
Selwyn and Ethel Nutley.

Australia Day celebrations are a calendar highlight for the community man each year.

“I just like to see people come along from far and wide,” he said.

“I always went to Australia Day awards. I’ve never missed any, and I just love going.”

Mr Nutley’s neighbour Jeanette Bunting attested to his character.

“It’s not the things that people see; it’s the things that Selwyn does for people all around. He’s always there.

“Selwyn, for all my life – and I’ve been in Emerald 38 years – you didn’t have to ask. He was just there.

“For all the accolades that we know about, that’s only the tip of the iceberg.”

Selwyn and neighbour Jeanette Bunting.
Selwyn and neighbour Jeanette Bunting.

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