The 2021 Sydney Royal Easter Show Rural Achiever has been awarded to Dione Howard, a veterinarian from Milbrulong, near Wagga Wagga.
This year's winner was announced at an event held at the Sky Deck, Olympic Park, on Sunday night, and capped off the week-long visit to the show for the Rural Achiever finalists.
The RAS Rural Achiever Award is a state-wide leadership program run by the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW to recognise future young leaders (20-29 years of age) who are working hard to make a significant contribution to their community and to rural Australia.
The achievers' chaperone during the show, Prue McCormack, Gresford, a former achiever herself, said the ambassadors had been at the show since Tuesday and through their stay had received personal development training, including around the importance of mentoring and also the "importance of courage without arrogance".
She said another important message from their time at the show was how to use the opportunities they have had into the future.
This year's winner, Dione, works with local primary producers, helping them manage the health and wellbeing of their livestock, while immersing herself in agriculture leadership, educational and ambassador programs.
"So far the experience at the show has been like nothing else I've ever been a part of," Dione said after accepting her award.
"I've had networking opportunities, I've been able to understand all that goes into the Sydney Royal Easter Show and I'm highly grateful to the RAS and the rest of our sponsors for the experience."
Among the many things the ambassadors get to see during their stay at the show is the behind-the-scenes action, whether it be the running of the judging rings, through to the more complicated workings of the entertainment in the main arena.
"I loved seeing this night show from behind the scenes - that was pretty special - as well as the stewarding and seeing how passionate each of the stewards are in their sections," she said.
As the state winner of the 2021 Rural Ambassador, Dione will go on to represent NSW in the national finals (which includes New Zealand) and will next year be held at Sydney Royal.
The other finalists included Ryan McParland, Jamberoo, Kory Graham, Sutton Forrest, Sally Gavin, Cumnock, Mitchell Dwyer, Cowra, Josie Clarke, Bellimbopinni and Allister Clarke, Finley.
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