I am a Yuwallarai woman from north western NSW.
Now living on Kaurna country in Adelaide, South Australia, I’m 53 years old, a daughter, a sister, an aunty and a grandmother (Aboriginal way).
Media and communications, arts administration, leadership and capacity-building, community advocacy and representation, and policy development… I have worked in all of these areas, holding a range of senior positions within the community, not-for-profit and government sectors.
You can view some examples of my efforts, perspectives and/or influence here.
Since August 2017, I have been the Director of Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation, a senior executive role within the SA public service. From 2015 to 2017, I was Chief Executive Officer of the National Centre of Indigenous Excellence (NCIE) in the Sydney suburb of Redfern. For two years prior to this, I was a Co-Chair of the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples. Previously, I was the Editor (and sometime Managing Editor) of the 100% Aboriginal owned and controlled newspaper, the Koori Mail for about seven years.
My earlier roles include:
- Inaugural Executive Officer of the Australian Indigenous Leadership Centre (AILC) in Canberra;
- Director of Tandanya – National Aboriginal Cultural Institute (NACI) in Adelaide;
- National Director of Public Affairs for ATSIC in Canberra;
- Media Advisor to Robert Tickner, Minister for Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Affairs;
- Media & Communications Manager at the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies (AIATSIS) in Canberra;
- Editor of the regional newspaper, The Tablelander, in Atherton in far north Qld; and journalist with ABC Radio, the Koori Mail and the West Australian newspaper.
My achievements include:
- Winner of the David Unaipon Award for an Emerging Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander Writer as part of the 2018 Queensland Literary Awards (Copyright Agency – 30th David Unaipon Award);
- Finalist in the 2016 NSW Women of the Year Awards (Aboriginal Woman of the Year category);
- An inaugural Australian Peacewoman Award from the Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (2015);
- Named in the Australian Financial Review and Westpac inaugural 100 Women of Influence Awards (2012);
- Editor of the Koori Mail when it was named 2011 Newspaper of the Year (in its circulation category of the PANPA Awards);
- Participant in the Australia 2020 Summit at Parliament House, Canberra (April 2008).
- Jointly with the Koori Mail, won the print media category of the 2008 Australian Human Rights Awards;
- Write and directed a short film under Metro Screen’s Lester Bostock Film Mentorship Scheme (2005); and
- Received a Centenary Medal for contribution to the Indigenous community and Australian life (2003), and an International Women’s Day Award for service to the SA community (2000).
I’m a member of the:
- Australian Institute of Company Directors (AICD);
- Goodooga Local Aboriginal Land Council (LALC);
- Tandanya – National Aboriginal Cultural Institute (NACI); and
- First Nations Media Australia (FNMA)