Amelia Rix


The 19th CBS Inc. Amelia Rix Award was held on 23/11/22 at the Sanctuary Adelaide Zoo. It was another successful Award ceremony, recognising and acknowledging people who had achieved their goals through determination and perseverance. There were around 130 people in attendance.

Christopher O’Connor, a client of the CBS Inc. Elizabeth office emceed the event and Freddie Brincat OAM, Executive Director and Founder of CBS Inc., gave some history on the Amelia Rix Award, including personal anecdotes of Amelia.

There were eight nominees for the 2022 Amelia Rix Award – Huon Hammet-Wrigley, Jamie Kellow, John (Lachie) Crossley, Sean Deakin, Simon Brown, Stephen Little, Tess Fairall and Zac Colton. The winner of the Award received $1,000 and the runner up $400. Encouragement Awards were also presented to all other nominees.

Five of this year’s nominees live and work in rural regions of SA, including The Riverland, Port Augusta, Port Pirie, Whyalla, and Berri. The nominees are employed in a variety of fields, including content developers, administration, machinist, café supervisor and vehicle detailing.

Their regular community work ranges from a community radio host and fundraiser, canteen manager, showroom presenter & detailer for both cars and boats and a National Youth Ambassador for Headspace.

This year’s winner was Sean Deakin from Whyalla. In achieving this award Sean shared, “I was completely shocked. I really don’t see the volunteer work I do in radio sponsorship and running the Council and Community show every week as award worthy because I love doing it. I’m so grateful for the opportunity that Dave Bruce, Ross Campbell and Jarrod Starkey (from Whyalla Hose & Fittings) have given me. I can’t repay what Tricia Gerahty from CBS Inc. has done for me with her give it a go attitude. CBS Inc. don’t treat you like a client. You actually feel like family. Also, a big thank you to the rest of the staff at CBS Inc. Whyalla, Freddie and all the people who sponsor the Amelia Rix Award. I think I will use the prize money to learn extra skills or buy tools.”

Tricia, Sean’s Employment Officer at CBS Inc. said “Sean has worked so hard over the last two or so years. Sean has shown that he has the resilience and determination to break down his barriers and achieve the goals he sets himself. An asset to any employer and a great member of the Whyalla Community.”

Sean’s employer at Whyalla Hose & Fittings added, “With Sean winning this award, it will enable him to be a role model and mentor to others who face the same adversity. It’s with great thanks to CBS Inc., in particular Tricia, who provided Sean the support he required to transition back into employment.”

Freddie Brincat (OAM) CBS Inc. Founder and Executive Director said “All nominees represent the desire to work, have friendships and build families and careers. So often their talents and skills are overlooked, but not at CBS Inc. This Award recognises and promotes the many positive contributions people with a disability provide workplaces and communities. Such nominees I expect will be community leaders in the future.”

All male nominees were provided with personalised fitted blazers from sponsor Beg Your Pardon and female nominees had their makeup done at Mecca Rundle Mall. Entertainment was provided by Robert and Dido of Les Gitans Blancs.

Winner Sean Deakin with CBS Inc. Founder and Executive Director, Freddie Brincat OAM and Amelia Rix Award committee member, Caroline Manetta.

Runner up Jamie Kellow with CBS Inc. Founder and Executive Director, Freddie Brincat OAM and Amelia Rix Award committee member, Caroline Manetta.

Anyone wishing to donate to the Amelia Rix Award, to help keep it going, can do so via the PayPal link or contact Chloe Phillips on 8224 2900.

Past Winners


Ryan Blashchek (inaugural winner)
Mid North


George Bambacas and Shane Bogna
Adelaide Metro


Hope Hedger
Murray Bridge


Gavin Oatway
Adelaide Metro


Michael Vardaro


Lukasz Wojniak and Emma Hesketh
Adelaide Metro


Con Kourtis


Robert Smith
Adelaide Metro

Runner-Up– David Palmer
Adelaide Metro


Ben Cregan

Runner-Up– Jordan Palmer
Adelaide Metro


Krystal Petherick

Runner-Up– Paula Denton


Benjamin Eichler
Murray Bridge

Runner-Up– Damien Carpenter
Mid North


Alyx Mitchell

Runner-Up– Graeme Docking
Murray Bridge


Sarah Bown
Adelaide Metro

Runner-Up– Jesse
Adelaide Metro


Josh Richards
Adelaide Metro

Runner-Up– Iris


Tom Pride
Northern Adelaide

Runner-Up– Tia Halakas


Michael Nettle
Western Adelaide

Runner-Up– Zoe Michalanney
Southern Adelaide


Nigel Kraft
Eastern Adelaide

Runners-Up– Nigel Favorito and Lisa Hutchinson
Western Adelaide and Port Augusta


Rebekah O’Brien
Northern Adelaide

Runner-Up– Samuel Button
Eastern Adelaide


Sean Langdon
Port Augusta

Runner-Up– Felicity Vardon
Eastern Adelaide