Fundraising record broken as 2015 Summer Surf Girl winners announced

Marcoola surf lifesaver Tiffany Di Ianni has beaten 13 young women from around Queensland to take out the coveted 2015 Summer Surf Girl title, announced on Saturday night at a Gala Ball at Jupiters Hotel & Casino on the Gold Coast.

Kristy Mitchell from Burleigh Heads Mowbray Park SLSC re-wrote the history books, named the Summer Surf Girl Highest Fundraiser after a record-breaking highest individual total raised for her surf life saving club – a phenomenal $232,832.

Fiona Dunn from Mackay SLSC was named the 2015 Summer Surf Girl Runner-Up while Bonnie Rogers from Broadbeach SLSC rounded out the winners list, announced as the 2015 Summer Surf Girl Entrants’ Choice.

The 14 entrants from around the state raised an outstanding collective total of $792,013.93 for their surf life saving clubs.

The final judging week, held 29 April-2 May, brought to an end Surf Life Saving Queensland’s (SLSQ) year-long fundraising initiative, which has now raised more than $15 million for surf clubs across the state since 1964.

SLSQ chief operating officer and judging panel chair George Hill said the judges were extremely impressed with the calibre of the 2015 Summer Surf Girl entrants.

“These young women performed exceptionally well, not only during the final judging but throughout the program. It was very difficult to distinguish a winner and came right down to the wire, as each entrant has been a fantastic ambassador for surf lifesaving over the past year,” Mr Hill said.

“Every entrant has taken on this challenge on top of their other commitments as students and career women, and we are proud of all of them for the dedication they have shown to the lifesaving movement.”

Mr Hill said Tiffany was chosen based on her fundraising initiatives, commitment to community education and surf lifesaving knowledge, and will now begin her year as an official ambassador for SLSQ.

“Tiffany was really the standout throughout all aspects of the final judging, demonstrating her commitment to lifesaving and to the Summer Surf Girl program,” he said.

“Tiffany has a long and proud history with surf lifesaving over the past 22 years, showing her strong ties to her club not only through fundraising but also through patrolling the beach (over 50 hours this season) and her commitment to community education and membership development.

“We are confident that Tiffany will take on her role over the next 12 months as an ambassador for Surf Life Saving with the same passion and commitment she demonstrated during the program and will champion the benefits of surf lifesaving to the community. SLSQ looks forward to working with Tiffany over the next year.

“Kristy Mitchell has also demonstrated outstanding efforts with her record-breaking fundraising total. To have raised more than $200,000 for her surf life saving club is a true testament to her dedication and commitment.”

The judging panel for the program this year consisted of SLSQ Chief Operating Officer George Hill, 2008 Summer Surf Girl winner Megan Crockford, and Etiquette & Manners Australia owner Lainey Loneragan.

Previously, the last Summer Surf Girl overall winners from regional areas were:
• North Queensland: 1980 (Tracie Goudge, Cairns)
• North Barrier: 2013 (Tori Demopolous, Arcadian)
• Wide Bay Capricorn: 2009 (Tammy Humphreys, Bundaberg)
• Sunshine Coast: 2014 (Caitlin Knight, Dicky Beach)
• Gold Coast: 2010 (Paige Cooper, North Burleigh)

Fundraising facts:
• The Summer Surf Girl program has raised $15 million for surf life saving clubs in Queensland since 1964
• Kristy Mitchell from Burleigh Heads Mowbray Park SLSC now holds the record for highest fundraising total
by an individual, raising $232,832 in 2015. The previous record holder was Kellie Huth, also from Burleigh
Heads Mowbray Park SLSC, who raised a total of $213,360 in 2012.
• The highest collective total ever raised was in 2012, with the entrants’ efforts resulting in $1,081,085.

Aleisha Farrell, Cairns SLSC – $60,657.84
Lucy Marturia, Etty Bay SLSC – $11,018.96
Casey Chalkley, Townsville Picnic Bay SLSC – $77,646.70
Brianne Rossato, Ayr SLSC – $57,929.38
Fiona Dunn, Mackay SLSC – $42,510.65
Emily Simpson, Rainbow Beach SLSC – $27,486.07
Tiffany Di Ianni, Marcoola SLSC – $77,958.20
Hanna Gale, Mooloolaba SLSC – $15,358.04
Megan Blin, Kawana Waters SLSC – $36,790
Natasha Stevenson, Point Lookout SLSC – $75,350.88
Bonnie Rogers, Broadbeach SLSC – $17,211.74
Johanna Boonstoppel, Mermaid Beach AEME SLSC – $19,480.75
Kristy Mitchell, Burleigh Heads/Mowbray Park SLSC – $232,832
Rebecca Petersen, Palm Beach SLSC – $27,754

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