Ohinemuri Regional History Journal 51, September 2007
Graham Watton had a very special 2006 year. In October he received the Hauraki District Council's Outstanding Citizens Award in recognition of his involvement in the district community. Then came the big surprise, the Queen's Service Medal for Services to the Community, in the New Year's Honours announced at the end of the year.
Soon after arriving in Paeroa in October, 1954, he became involved in sport and community organisations and this involvement expanded as the years rolled by.
These two community awards go with the five life memberships he has been privileged to receive: Jaycee International (Senator), Thames Valley Branch of the Society for the Intellectually Handicapped, Paeroa West Rugby and Sports Club, Paeroa Promotions Trust (street motorcycle races) and the Thames Valley Rugby Union. He was appointed a Justice of the Peace in 1992.
There have been several other organisations he has been associated with including golf, cricket, bowls, Miller Avenue School Committee, Paeroa Lions Club, Paeroa RSA, Paeroa-Hauraki Friendship Force, Paeroa and District Historical Society, Paeroa and District Museum, district historian, Hauraki branch of the Historic Places Trust and several Paeroa Borough and Hauraki District council committees, including local Civil Defence.
Graham's sincere thanks go to his wife, Joy, and family for their devoted support. He sees the two community awards and the life memberships as being recognition for the Watton team effort.