CYCA CEO Justine Kirkjian named Australian Sailing’s Professional of the Year

Congratulations to our CEO, Justine Kirkjian, on being named Australian Sailing’s Sports Professional of the Year for 2021.

Justine won the NSW/ACT award in September and scooped the top prize at the national awards, which were streamed live on the Australian Sailing Facebook page.

Having taken the reigns as CEO in March 2020 after 19 years as Sailing Manager at the CYCA, Justine has successfully steered the Club through an extraordinarily challenging period of COVID-19 lockdowns and race cancellations.

This is the second time Justine has been recognised with the prestigious award, following her win in 2015.

“I’m truly humbled to receive this award in what has been a challenging 18 months for everybody,” Justine said.

“It was lovely to be nominated alongside Michael Vincent and Simon Turpin, from our Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race Finishing Partner yacht clubs, the Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania and the Southport Yacht Club.

“I’ve worked alongside Simon for many years, organising the Noakes Sydney Gold Coast Yacht Race, and he truly is a credit to the Southport Yacht Club.

“I’d like to thank the CYCA Board and the CYCA Members for always supporting me throughout my roles at the CYCA, and the wonderful staff I have surrounding me who make my life a lot easier.”

Australian Sailing Male Sailor of the Year – Mat Belcher and Will Ryan

Congratulations to CYCA Member and YSA Alumni, Will Ryan, who won Australian Sailing’s Male Sailor of the Year Award, with his skipper Mat Belcher.

The pair won gold in the Men’s 470 at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.

“We look forward to talking about these moments in 10 or 20 years and making them sound better than they were,” Will quipped.

“We’ve got a special group of people to work alongside – Iain Murray and Victor Kovalenko were an important part of our journey.

“Mat has been great in guiding me along my 470 journey, as has Victor, since I began, so we’ve come a long way.”

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