CO-CHAIR CANDIDATE (FEMALE) NOMINATION STATEMENT
My nomination for Co-Chair, National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples is based on my extensive history and experience in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs spanning over thirty years.
I am a proud Bidjara/Birri Gubba Juru woman who has lived all the issues that affect our people and therefore have a personal responsibility and legacy to confront the challenges and demands that persist in society. Through this holistic knowledge I have worked across many fields, locally, statewide, nationally and Internationally.
As an historian and author I have documented the lives and events of Indigenous Australians, which has been one of my great passions. Other highlights have included my work in Reconciliation, Stolen Generations, Education, The Arts and Leadership. Areas I have also worked in include prison reform, domestic and family violence, health, housing, literacy, disability, human rights, women’s issues and other social justice areas.
In 2001 I received the Member of the Order of Australia for services to the Indigenous community, particularly for work with reconciliation, literacy, women’s issues and social justice.
My CV will attest to my various capacities as Chair, Co-Chair, Commissioner, Director, Board, Council member and Indigenous Expert. In all these roles I have performed to the best of my ability and provided the most effective participation in establishing community controlled organisations, policy formulation and implementation. Boards have included Government, non-Government, academic, Philanthropic and community sectors.
I have worked voluntarily on a number of projects that enhance the betterment of our peoples and communities including the Steering Committee of the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples for eight years. I believe in the true nature of representative democratic bodies that Congress prides itself on.
One of my strengths is my ability to communicate and negotiate with people from all walks of life. With a diverse audience I am able to listen, converse and impart knowledge from a focal place of integrity and experience. Communicating in this way is essential for a Co-Chair to enable active representation to their community and greater exposure to the wider community, politicians and other stakeholders.
I am a national speaker on many topics and my networks are vast across the country. I travel regularly and widely with my consultancy, keeping in touch with a range of communities and individuals. In this way I am well informed regarding their challenges, hopes and aspirations. My life has been dedicated to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander issues and the pursuit of a better life for my people.