about the orcas

orcas history and committee structure

about the orcas

The Nunawading Orcas have had a constant membership of between 40-60 members since its inception, with an age range of between 20 to over 60. There are a wide range of standards in swimming. About twenty members train regularly, that is, one or more sessions per week. Training takes place at Aqualink Nunawading, Fraser Place, Nunawading.

Members come mainly from the eastern suburbs of Melbourne, from Warrandyte in the north to Mulgrave in the south, Box Hill in the west to Wantirna in the east.

The Club has an active social program with both informal and more formal events occurring regularly throughout the year and organised by the Committee.

Members actively participate in still water competitions, open water bay (Port Phillip Bay), sea swim meets, and triathlon events. However, the focus of the Club is very much on fun, fitness and friendship.

New members are welcome and further information can be obtained by contacting the Club Secretary or talking to the Coach pool side during training times.

An application form and details about fees are available under the Training section of this website.


Click here to download the Nunawading Orcas Constitution as a PDF.

orcas history

Early in August 1994 Aqualink Nunawading called for expressions of interest from people who were interested in forming an Aussi Masters club based at the Centre. The Centre believed that an Aussie Masters club was needed to cater for adults who would like more organised and structured swimming and who were interested in improving their skills and fitness.

There was a good response from the public to the idea of the formation of a club and in early September 1994 the inaugural meeting of the Club took place. This was followed shortly afterwards with the first training session under the supervision of Club’s new coach Brett Gartner, a former Nunawading Club national squad member.

The Club grew steadily from these beginnings and soon had over 50 members including a number who competed in District, State, National and International level still water competitions as well as in many open water competitions held in the summer season in Victorian waters and further afield.

Over the years the membership has stabilised and the numbers training regularly have been consistent. However, there have been fluctuations in the numbers competing depending on the interests of members at any given time.

orcas committee

Larry Murray

Larry Murray


As a child I lived close to the bay but I did not start swimming until I was in my late 40’s. Initially I was “all-out” swimming 25m free-style but with regular coaching my proficiency slowly improved in free-style and also in the other competitive strokes of backstroke, breast-stroke and butterfly. Although I was making great progress for someone for whom swimming came late in life I wanted to increase proficiency, speed and intensity of my workout.

Late in 2010 I went to watch the Orcas Masters Swimming group at Nunawading. It was everything I was looking for with high quality coaching, an emphasis on continued, timed improvement and a regular, challenging fitness routine. As an added bonus the Orcas are a great bunch of people who are fun to socialize with at their various, regular events.

I am delighted to be president of a club that accommodates personal objectives of fitness, technical stroke improvement, pool competition and open-water events at all ages and all levels within a friendly, encouraging environment.

Mark Williamson

Mark Williamson

Vice President

Since I started swimming again two years ago I am fitter, have lost 15kg, feel healthier and look better. At secondary school I participated in a large amount of sport including athletics, swimming and football. Since that time with a full time job, marriage and a family of two children I thought that I would never have time to keep fit. As a result of training with the Orcas I am as fit now as I was at age 30 and I find I have more time and energy to live life to the fullest with my family and friends. When I first started swimming at the club it was with the idea of just swimming for fitness but the friendliness of the men and women in the club is such that I would never miss one of their regular social events and I am a frequent competitor in pool-based and open-water swimming competitions.
Greg Palmer

Greg Palmer


I had been a regular lap swimmer at the Nunawading Pool and was interested in participating in an evening squad to improve my technique and fitness.

I joined Nunawading Orcas when it was formed in 1994 and found it ideally suited my needs. The coaching has been professional and well structured to maintain interest while improving technique in all strokes. The intensity and distance varied to maintain a good level of fitness. Social activities and friendships have made swimming in a group most enjoyable.

Claire Stonehouse

Claire Stonehouse


To be updated

Paul Dew

Paul Dew


Having grown up near the beach in a place called Governors Bay in New Zealand, I’ve had a love for swimming from as early as I can remember. At age six I was already a competent swimmer. Although that was a very long time ago, swimming always seemed quite natural for me. By my teens however, swimming was replaced with Basketball which became my sport for many years and far into adulthood. Basketball injuries and wear and tear eventually saw me return to the swimming joy I had as a young boy for a continued source of fitness and social interaction.

As a career change I started down the path of swim teaching and coaching in 2013. Working as a swim instructor at all levels since then, and transitioning into coaching along the way.

Among my more recent exploits are visits in two consecutive years to the remote community of Yuendumu as a Red Dust Role Model. Teaching swimming there, Lifeguarding and twice helping to run a Swim Carnival for the community.

In 2016 I was awarded both the Victorian and the National Austswim awards for Teacher of Swimming and Water safety.

Now coaching Nunawading Junior competitive Athletes and a Teenage non-competitive squad, I’ve added the Nunawading Orcas masters group to my repertoire.

Swimmers will find me to have an inclusive, adaptable ethos supporting an encouraging group environment whilst taking an orderly and analytical approach to building fitness and refining technique via the relevant stroke drills. And as well offering feedback and stroke correction along the way.


past coaches, committees and life members

Year President Vice President Treasurer Secretary
2024 Larry Murray Mark Williamson Greg Palmer Claire Stonehouse
2023 Larry Murray Mark Williamson Greg Palmer Brooke Kreuzer
2022 Larry Murray Mark Williamson Greg Palmer Brooke Kreuzer
2021 Larry Murray Mark Williamson Greg Palmer Brooke Kreuzer
2020 Larry Murray Mark Williamson Greg Palmer Rafal Nowacki
2019 Larry Murray Mark Williamson Greg Palmer Rafal Nowacki
2018 Larry Murray Mark Williamson Greg Palmer Rafal Nowacki
2017 Larry Murray Mark Williamson Greg Palmer Rafal Nowacki
2016 Larry Murray Pablo Pizzuto Greg Palmer Rafal Nowacki
2015 Emilio Badoer Pablo Pizzuto Greg Palmer Friedo Ligthart
2014 Emilio Badoer Pablo Pizzuto Greg Palmer Friedo Ligthart
2013 Emilio Badoer Pablo Pizzuto Greg Palmer Friedo Ligthart
2012 Mart Hagel Margaret Lowe Greg Palmer Friedo Ligthart
2011 Mart Hagel Annette Brunton Greg Palmer Friedo Ligthart
2010 Mart Hagel Annette Brunton Greg Palmer Peter Rush
2009 Mart Hagel Annette Brunton Greg Palmer Peter Rush
2008 Mart Hagel Brenda Cameron Greg Palmer Peter Rush
2007 Mart Hagel Brenda Cameron Greg Palmer Ross Brimer
2006 Mart Hagel Brenda Cameron Greg Palmer Ross Brimer
2005 Mart Hagel Brenda Cameron Greg Palmer Paul Bunker
2004 Mart Hagel Ross Hibbins Greg Palmer Anne Cole
2003 Rod Clarke Trevor Jackson Greg Palmer Anne Cole
2002 Rod Clarke Trevor Jackson Greg Palmer Kim Rea
2001 Rod Clarke Trevor Jackson Greg Palmer Kim Rea
2000 Rod Clarke Joanne Muraca Greg Palmer Sandy Broadhead
1999 Mart Hagel Joanne Muraca Greg Palmer Sandy Broadhead
1998 Paul Bunker Mart Hagel Greg Palmer Mike Smith
1997 Paul Bunker Mart Hagel Greg Palmer Vicki Smith
1996 Terry Foster Paul Bunker Greg Palmer Aine Walsh
1995 Terry Foster Paul Bunker Paul Thompson Aine Walsh


Year Name
2021-present Paul Dew
2018-2021 Brendan Powell
2014-2018 Alan Godfrey
2011-2013 Rose Nunn
2009-2011 Matthew Armfield
2005–2008 Justin Angerer
2000–2004 Sarah Pollett
1998–1999 Shane Sanderson
1994–1997 Brett Gartner


The following members have been awarded honorary life membership for outstanding services to the Club.


Year Name Reason for award
2011 Mart Hagel For services to the Club for over a decade.
2006 Greg Palmer For services as the Club Treasurer for over a decade.
1998 Brett Gartner Outstanding services as inaugural coach and in helping to get the club up and running.


Each year our members are awarded trophies in three categories; president’s award, coach’s award and the best competing swimmer.

The Best Competing Swimmer’s Award

At the Club’s AGM and Presentation night a trophy is awarded to the best competing swimmer of the Year. This is determined on a points system which is maintained by the Committee.

The aim is to recognise the best competing swimmer of the year and to encourage members to compete. It is awarded to the swimmer who has accumulated the most points during a swimming year. To encourage slower swimmers to compete and stand a chance to receive the Best Competing Swimmer Award the club introduced ‘participation’ points that count toward a swimmer’s total point tally. Member’s receive one additional point for each pool race entered and two points for every open water event, irrespective of distance.

In the event of a swimmer being a member of multiple clubs, that swimmer must nominate Nunawading Orcas as their club for each swim meet they want included in the count. In addition, a swimmer must attend a minimum number of training sessions and be an active participant in club training with at least 15% of training sessions attended by the swimmer to be eligible for the Swimmer of the Year award.

If there are swimmers who finish the year on equal points then the swimmer who has the best placing at the higher level receives the award. This will be determined in consultation with the Club’s Coach.

Points System

1. State or National meets
Ten points for first place, down to one point for tenth place.

2. Club meets
Three points for first, two points for second and one point for third.

3. Participation points
One additional point for each pool race and two points for every open water event.

2024 Not Awarded
2023 Claire Stonehouse
2022 Graham La
2021 Rafal Nowacki
2020 Brooke Kreuzer
2019 Yaron Shamir
2018 Victoria Greenhan
2017 Mark Williamson
2016 Ben Grollman
2015 Andrew Fisch
2014 Pablo Pizzuto
2013 Patrick Mohr
2012 Annette Brunton
2011 Peter Rush
2010 Friedo Ligthart
2009 Anna d’Alberto
2008 Ross Brimer
2007 Justin Angerer
2006 Margaret Lowe
2005 Anne Cole
2004 Greg Palmer
2003 Trevor Jackson
2002 Sarah Pollett
2001 Charmaine Lee
2000 Shane Sanderson
1999 David Pope
1998 Sandy Broadhead
1997 Peter Rush
2024 Daniel Barrett
2023 David Gale
2022 David Little
2021 Meg McPherson
2020 Robert Oblak
2019 Ben Grollman
2018 David Mayes
2017 Rafal Nowacki
2016 Yaron Shamir
2015 Friedo Ligthart
2014 Brenton Edwards
2013 Craig Williamson
2012 Friedo Ligthart
2011 Suwito Linoh
2010 Suwito Linoh
2009 Friedo Ligthart
2008 Annette Brunton
2007 Mitch Lawson
2006 Anne Cole
2005 Kevin Furlong
2004 Emilio Badoer
2003 Wendy Masters
2002 Anne Cole
2001 Mart Hagel
2000 Trevor Jackson
1999 Margaret Stanley & Greg Palmer
1998 Jo Muraca & Trevor Jackson
1997 Charmaine Lee & Brian Peakin


2024 Mark Williamson
2023 Mark Williamson
2022 N/A
2021 N/A
2020 Mark Williamson
2019 Mark Williamson
2018 Mark Williamson
2017 Victoria Greenhan
2016 Friedo Ligthart
2015 Craig Williamson
2014 Craig Williamson
2013 Chris Muir
2012 Suwito Linoh
2011 Suwito Linoh
2010 Johannes Achilles
2009 Margaret Lowe
2008 Anne Cole
2007 Anne Cole & Patrick Mohr
2006 Anne Cole & Neomal Jasinghe
2005 Robyn Gillespie & Rod Clarke
2004 Margaret Lowe & Rod Clarke
2003 Nicole Galea & Michael Drake
2002 Robyn Gillespie & Rod Clarke
2001 Robyn Gillespie & Ross Hibbins
2000 Linda Stewart & Mike Smith
1999 Vicky Smith & Terry Foster
1998 Linda Stewart & Kim Rea
1997 Sue Williams & Kim Rea

* Prior to 2007 there were two competing swimmers’ awards, one for the best male and the other for the best female.


Join the Pod.
Share This