Melissa Valentina Baez
25th May 2023
Mr GREG PIPER (Lake Macquarie)—I'd like to acknowledge Lake Macquarie's very own Karate Kid, nine-year-old Melissa Valentina Baez who is ranked number one in Australia for her division by the International Sport Karate Association. Melissa has worked extremely hard over the past year, displaying determination and perseverance to win a host of titles including the Australian Open, Victorian State Championships, and Central Coast Open Championships to name a few. She has also competed in several Australian Chitokai Karate Association Championship tournaments, winning more than 10 gold medals over the years, including four gold medals in the past year. Melissa is an inspiration to both her peers and to the younger students at Morisset's Hunter Valley Martial Arts Centre where she is part of the leadership program. Her dedication and commitment to others has also seen her chosen as a 2022 Junior School Leader at Charlton Christian College. Melissa was also named the Young Sports Star of the Year at the recent Lake Mac Awards. I congratulate Melissa on her efforts and wish her every success when she represents Australia at the US Open next month.
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