A Mount Maunganui surf life guard official has been named TSB Bank Surf Official of the Year in the Surf Life Saving Awards of Excellence.

Greg Rieger has officiated at 18 local, regional, national and international events last season including the New Zealand Pool Championships, Oceans '17, TSB Bank New Zealand Surf Life Saving Championships and the World Masters Games.

Rieger was held in high regard by fellow officials and competitors for his knowledge and application of the rules and the friendly manner in which he carries out his duties.

Surf Life Saving New Zealand celebrated its members' contribution to preventing drowning and injury on New Zealand's beaches at its annual Awards of Excellence on September 23.


Club members from around the country gathered at the Heritage Hotel in Auckland for the presentation of lifesaving, sport and service awards.

Mount Maunganui's Paul Treanor was awarded the Surf Life Saving New Zealand Service Award for his outstanding service to surf lifesaving at club, regional, or national level over a period of years.

The 50 Year Badge was given to Mount Maunganui's Alan Coates for his 50-year dedication of service to surf lifesaving in New Zealand.

Every year, awards are given to Surf Life Saving members to officially recognise them for their hard work and dedication to Surf Life Saving in New Zealand.

Most awards were nominated locally with winners from their regional Awards of Excellence ceremonies then becoming finalists for the national awards.

2017 Award winners:
DHL Volunteer of the Year: Kate Suter, Sumner
NZLBG Lifeguard of the Year: Nathan Berry, Levin-Waitarere
BP Rescue of the Year: Far North Surf Rescue- March 2017
DHL Innovation of the Year: Muriwai- Drone Project
BP Media Story of the Year: 1 News- "Water safety goes hi-tech"
TSB Bank Official of the Year: Greg Rieger, Mt Maunganui
TSB Bank Surf Coach of the Year: Matt Sutton, Midway
TSB Bank International Performance of the Year: New Zealand Black Fins
DHL Instructor of the Year: Todd Velvin, Fitzroy
London Trophy 2016/17 Season: Waimairi
Gudsell Trophy 2016/17 Season: Mairangi Bay

Service Awards: Holders of the SLSNZ Service Award have given outstanding service to Surf Life Saving at club, regional, or national level over a period of years.

Jason Broome, Waimarama
Michael Buck, Mairangi Bay
Terrence Burbidge, Mairangi Bay
Aidan Charman, Westshore
Wendy Clough, Fitzroy
Kevin Cornish, Red Beach
Shane Edwards, Sunset Beach
Warren Edwards, Sunset Beach
Neil Galland, Westshore
Jacquelyn Grant, Mairangi Bay
Brendan Hamilton-Gibbs, Waimarama
Joanne Hobson, Sunset Beach
Emma Hubbard, Pacific
Darren James, Fitzroy
Reece Kennedy, Ocean Beach Kiwi
Benny Larsen, Orewa
Michael Lawrence, Kariaotahi
Colleen Murphy, Red Beach
Brent Phillips, Sunset Beach
Jason Pocock, Mairangi Bay
Paul Treanor, Mt Maunganui

Distinguished Service Awards: Holders of the Distinguished Service Award have continued to give outstanding service to Surf Life Saving at club, regional, or national level over a further period of years.

Michael Bassett-Foss, Waimarama
Brad O'Leary, Nelson
Faron Turner, Orewa
Todd Velvin, Fitzroy

Life Membership Awards: Life Memberships are awarded to those members who have been active members for at least 25 years and who have provided exemplary service at a national level.

Stephen Johnson QSM, Waimairi
Brett Leask, Waimairi

50 Year Badges: The 50 Year Badge is given to members who have dedicated 50 years of service to Surf Life Saving within New Zealand.

Terry Christie, Worser Bay
Alan Coates, Mt Maunganui
John Dallimore, Piha
Don Dalton, North Beach
Rex Dalton, North Beach
Bryan Faulknor, Ocean Beach Kiwi
Ian Ferguson MBE, Palmerston North
Robin Foubister, Muriwai
David Gerrard, St Clair
Michael Gibbs, Opunake
Paul Goosey, North Beach
Ian Greenwood, Worser Bay
Neil Greenwood, Worser Bay
Patricia Lovell (nee Mooney), Worser Bay
Colin Luke, Palmerston North
Trevor Miles, Westshore
Graeme Newton, St Clair
Larry Rountree, Piha
Gregory Samson, North Beach
Allan Seagar, Piha
Kevin Shute, Palmerston North
Kelvin Williams, St Clair