The passionate advocate behind the existence of Katherine's art and cultural centre has been awarded one of the Northern Territory's highest volunteer honours.
Craig Lambert, the chairperson of the Godinymayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Culture Centre, isn't one to think he's worthy of an award.
But without his drive for change and reconciliation, Katherine likely wouldn't be the place it is today.
And it almost definitely wouldn't have the art space highlighting the region's rich culture and heritage.
Mr Lambert said he was 'staggered' to win the Chief Minister's Volunteer of the Year Award last night, although, ever humble, he didn't attend the event.
"I thought it would go no further than a nomination, I am humbled, but if I am worthy of an award, it is only because of a lot of good people standing with me along the way working on the project for more than 10 years."
Mr Lambert was one of the key players in bringing a dedicated art space to Katherine - now known as the Godinymayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Culture Centre.
It took 10 years for the Katherine Regional Cultural Centre Action Group, of which Mr Lambert was the deputy chair, to rally enough money for a building.
"I don't have an artistic bone in my body, but my mother has been active in the art scene for a long time," he said.
"We were both born here and we had a fairly strong friend and family group who wanted a facility to show the wealth of product in Katherine."
He said there has been a push since the 80's for more than the sporadic art event.
"Ironically, unknown to Katherine people, Katherine artists are quite famous outside of Katherine, but we didn't have a facility to show it off.
"It was a part of Katherine not well understood."
Hundreds of hours of his time have been dedicated to creating the art space, from arguing Katherine needed such a thing, to being a player in the design of the building, programs and staffing.
But there was always an ambitious underlying goal that extended further than showing off world-class art.
"I believe it is a reconciliation project, not in the headline grabbing way politicians use it, but in the way it has drawn people in and thrown them together," he said.
"When you break it down, reconciliation is about developing respect for one another and while that is a natural step we are seeing, the cultural centre has made that process easier and faster.
"It provides a place where cultural exchange and appreciation can happen and it moves all these barriers by doing, not saying."
Poppy Searle, the director of the Godinymayin Yijard Rivers Arts and Culture Centre says she nominated Mr Lambert in recognition of his committment and tireless advocacy.
I am humbled, but if I am worthy of an award, it is only because of a lot of good people standing with me along the wayCraig Lambert
It is a timely nomination which follows his announcement he will be stepping down as chair of the board: "sometimes old and known becomes old and stale," he says, but in his case most would disagree.
"There wouldn't be an organisation if it wasn't for him to put together the funding and get it off the ground," Mrs Searle said.
She said she wanted to highlight the hard work of volunteers as well as his dedication to promoting cohesion.
"It is important to know places like (the cultural centre) don't happen by magic," she said.
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