Sir John Reid Community Service Award

More than 1.5 million volunteers are making an important impact across Victoria in building our communities, services, and connections.

Rotary Melbourne wishes to pay tribute to those dedicated achievers, and encourage others to follow their lead through the Sir John Reid Community Service Award.

Nominations are now open.


About Sir John

Sir John Reid was inducted into Rotary Club of Melbourne in 1939 and remained a Rotarian until his death at age 81 in 1984.  He was President of the Club in 1953-54, awarded the Vocational Service Award in 1978, and made a Paul Harris Fellow in 1984.  Among his many Rotary activities also played a role in re-establishing Rotary in post war Japan.

Sir John was also involved with the Brotherhood of St Laurence and the Baker Institute. He supported or served on a variety of Boards including the ABC, Melbourne YMCA, Old Colonists Association of Victoria, the Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, the Walter and Eliza Hall Medical Research Institute, the Victorian College of the Arts, and the University of Melbourne Conservatorium of Music, to name a few.

The legacy

In 1987, Rotary Melbourne introduced the Sir John Reid Community Service Award as a permanent memorial in recognition of Sir John’s commitment to the community.  The Award is made in recognition of an individual judged to have been devoted to community welfare for a lengthy period without remuneration. The recipient is presented with a citation and plaque commissioned by the Club and produced by sculptor Michael Meszaros.

In 2017, the John T Reid Charitable Trust, as a memorial to Sir John and Lady Reid’s legacy in service and philanthropic endeavours, awarded a $300,000 grant to Rotary Melbourne for the purpose of providing a financial gift of up to $10,000 to the not-for-profit organisation associated with the Award recipient.




The plaque

Award sculptor, Michael Meszaros, believes community service is largely concerned with helping the old, the young, the sick and the unemployed. People in these four categories are constrained and limited by their circumstances. The plaque design shows these four areas enclosed by a wall, but with an open door with perspective lines running out through it to a rising sun. The door has been opened by a hand which belongs to the recipient of the award.  The wall is the limitations, the door is the release from those limitations and the lines leading to the sun are the new opportunities. The hand makes it all happen.


Emily Shepard's Story (a past awardee)

Emily Shepard co-founded UsherKids Australia (UKA), an organisation dedicated to ensuring children diagnosed with Usher syndrome (USH) and their families have access to an informed, committed and caring community of healthcare professionals and peer support networks to allow them to thrive in their everyday endeavours.

As a direct result of Emily’s tireless dedication to her volunteer work, the UKA community has now grown to over 50 families and 500 professionals. If it were not for Emily and her vision, there would now be many families in Australia trying to navigate the complex journey of supporting a child with a rare disease on their own. The assistance that UsherKids has provided to those families, and the clinicians supporting them is invaluable.





Nomination information and form

Please download all forms below and read them carefully
before you commence the nomination process.

Key Dates for 2024

Close Nominations – Monday 4th August 2024

Award Presentation Day – Wednesday 27th November 2024

For all enquiries, please contact CWC Award Committee via the club email: Rotary Office Email


Promotional Flyer

Information for Nominations

Nomination Form

Award Nomination Form


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