In the last issue of BayBuzz Digest we attempted to identify one hundred individuals in Hawke’s Bay who make an uncommon impact on the well-being of the region … the 100 Top Buzzmakers of Hawke’s Bay.

How can one make an uncommon impact? By excelling in some field of endeavor. By influencing the direction of local government on a regular basis. By leading and motivating others to become involved in community activities. By financially, or by outstanding personal service, supporting community causes and human needs. By championing our environment. By modeling important values and behaviours to others in the community. By significantly driving the region’s economic, social or cultural development.

The point of identifying Top Buzzmakers is to celebrate such contributions to the community. To give recognition and show appreciation, to cheer them on to do even more, and to encourage other people to make similar contributions.

In the last issue, we actually only selected 90 Top Buzzmakers from nearly 200 individuals who had been nominated. Our thought was that our readers, seeing the initial list, might have their own notions of who should be celebrated as Buzzmakers. So we asked readers for their nominations for the final ten.

And we got a terrific response, with nearly 100 additional names recommended – educators, farmers, business people, community activists, environmentalists, artists, social service providers … even a few Councillors! All deserving … and all making the final ten selections just as difficult as the first ninety.

Just a word on Councillors. Because public service is their “job” – and there are so many of them – we felt it best in general to exclude them from consideration to leave plenty of room on the list for other people. Simple as that. As it has turned out, two Councillors received considerable support for contributions they make to the community well beyond their “official” role … in the first ninety, Henare O’Keefe; and in our final ten, John Cocking (as you’ll read below).

So, without further adieu, here are the final ten Buzzmakers, followed by the now complete list of HB’s Top 100 Buzzmakers.

Pat Benson
Director of Napier Computing Services and former junior All Black. Received a Spirit of Napier Award for his contributions to the city, including preservation and refurbishment of historic Art Deco buildings and his long-term support and commitment to sports groups and community projects around the Bay.

Wellesley Binding
Leading contemporary-style painter in HB. Lectures and coordinates media and visual communication courses at EIT.

Alistair Bramley

General manager of Environment, Conservation and Outdoor Education Trust (ECOED). Surprised at the critical state of kiwi locally, he initiated the Save our Kiwi Hawke’s Bay project, which has returned nearly 100 juvenile kiwi to the wild.

John Cocking
As “Bertie”, the city of Napier’s most visible, energetic and entertaining ambassador.

Isabel Morgan
Longstanding chair of Forest & Bird in Napier. Ardent conservationist. A member of Keep Napier Beautiful and Ahuriri Protection Society. Trade Aid Shop volunteer.

James Morgan
Retired newspaper editor, farmer, forester and administrator. Life member, Hastings Group Theatre; producer, Napier Operatic Society. As a trustee of The Community Foundation HB, he’s spearheading campaign to establish the Hawke’s Bay Digital Archive, which will use state-of-the-art technology to preserve historic photos, films, slides and oral histories of HB.

Murray Sawyer
Operator of HBTV, Channel 51 … the Bay’s gateway to a local and now national television audience. Locally-produced “Chatroom” offers a platform for HB political and community voices to be heard.

Neil Swindells
Principal of St John’s College in Hastings. Says an admirer: “Takes the ‘hard cases’ that other schools turn away, and makes them into something.”

Bruce Wills (and John, Fiona and Scott Wills)
Operates the 1100 hectare Trelinnoe Farm outside Napier, a model of best practice farming. Serves as national chair of Federated Farmers meat & fibre division. Trelinnoe is also home to a twelve hectare showplace garden and café, a favourite of tourists and locals alike.

Jenny Yule
Founder and Managing Director of award-winning PORSE, which trains people to provide in-home care and education for children. Named most outstanding business woman of 2008 by publisher of Her Magazine for NZ businesswomen. In 2007, HB Chamber named PORSE supreme business of the year.

With these additions, here are the Top 100 Buzzmakers of Hawke’s Bay for 2009/10.

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