SHE is already a young legend in the eyes of Orange’s Tidy Towns Committee, and Nicole Sugden says she is humbled by her nomination in the 2014 Young Legends Awards.
Orange Tidy Towns Community Committee chair, councillor Chris Gryllis said when the committee was considering who they could put forward as a nominee in the awards, Ms Sugden was a standout.
“Since her car accident she has gone on to achieve so much,” he said.
“She is an inspirational young woman and our committee unanimously agreed she is the person we wanted to put forward in the category of cities with a population over 25,000.”
Ms Sugden, who is in the final stages of her PhD, says she is very appreciative of the nomination.
“It really is such a lovely surprise,” she said.
One of her volunteering roles in the community involves speaking with young people at road safety awareness days for young people.
“It is really nice to get feedback from parents who tell me it has made an impression on their young son or daughter. Especially when they tell me they now drive like a nanna,” she said.
For the last couple of years Ms Sugden has been part of the driver education sessions in Bathurst as well as Orange.
“But this year I am just doing Orange because my studies are fairly full on,” she said.
A Tidy Towns Assessor will visit Orange on August 11 and 12 to interview Ms Sugden and speak with the Tidy Towns Committee.
Cr Gryllis said Ms Sugden’s family, friends and the wider community had all supported her since a motor vehicle accident left her in a wheelchair, however, it was Ms Sugden’s determination to go to university, mentor other young people and support road safety campaigns among Orange teenagers that had endeared her to the community.
“Everyone is very proud of Nicole and her achievements so far and I am sure she will go on to bigger and better things,” he said.