Royal Agricultural Society honours for Ryde champion

ROYAL Agricultural Society of NSW will award Ryde local Kathy Koutsoukis (pictured) with an esteemed Champion of the RAS honour at this year’s Sydney Royal Easter Show.

Each year the RAS acknowledges and celebrates individuals who have made an outstanding contribution to the Sydney Royal Competitions and the industries they represent.

All 15 recipients will be celebrated at a private function this Friday March 30 with RAS dignitaries and industry representatives joining to commend their achievements and many years of service to their industry.

Ms Koutsoukis’ passion for horticulture began at a young age when her neighbour introduced her to orchids.

After becoming president of the Orchid Society of NSW, she dedicated time to raising the profile and quality of the orchid display and Orchid Show Bench Judging.

“Probably my favourite Show memory is the first time my husband and I won the Orchid Society of NSW medal for Best Orchid Exhibitor at the Show in 2009,” Ms Koutsoukis said.

“I love the people and atmosphere at the Show, it’s the beauty of showing off your hobby and interacting with all the people who come to view the orchid display and judging.

“I recently become a Royal Horticulture Judge and now enjoy being invited to judge and steward at the Show, as well as being an exhibitor.”

President of the RAS, Robert Ryan, says Ms Koutsoukis epitomises everything the Show is about: Australia’s biggest celebration of our country’s people, practices and produce.

“The Sydney Royal Competitions are the cornerstone of the Show and showcase the skill, energy, passion and produce from across rural NSW and beyond,” Mr Ryan said.

“The Champions of the RAS go beyond winning ribbons and trophies. Many have been a part of the Show community for a significant part of their lives.

“The Show would not be the world class event it is today without the dedication and tireless commitment from our exhibitors who are represented by the 2018 crop of Champions.

“With so many different components to the Show, the award recognises those who arenÕt necessarily in the spotlight.”

This year 32,000 entrants will compete across 42 competition areas and over 5,500 competition classes, from livestock and domestic animals, to arts and crafts, and woodchopping.