IAHA Governance

Our Board

The Board’s role is to govern IAHA rather than to manage it. In governing IAHA, the Board members must act in the best interests of IAHA as a whole. It is the role of the CEO and Senior Management to manage IAHA in accordance with direction from the Board. It is the Board’s responsibility to oversee the activities of Management in carrying out these delegated duties. The Board is ultimately responsible for all matters relating to the running of IAHA.

The IAHA Board is responsible for, and has the authority to determine, all matters relating to the direction, control, policies, practices and management of IAHA. In carrying out its governance role, the main task of the Board is to drive the performance of IAHA. The Board must also ensure that IAHA complies with all of its contractual, statutory and any other legal obligations, which includes the requirements of any regulatory body.

The IAHA Board recognises its key functions and activities as:
• Formulating strategic direction
• Setting governance policy
• Monitoring and supervising (CEO and organisational performance)
• Providing accountability to the members
• Risk Management
• Appointing and working with and through the CEO

The IAHA Board of Directors have developed a Governance Charter outlining the Board of Management roles and responsibilities, policies and procedures, values and conduct. 

IAHA 2017 Board

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Chairperson – Ms Nicole Turner

DSC_0338Nicole is a Kamilaroi woman, her grandmother was part of the stolen generation, and she currently lives on the coast near Kempsey. She is one of very few qualified Aboriginal community Nutritionists in Australia. Nicole currently works in 2 roles… She is an Indigenous health academic with Newcastle University and within that role she delivers cultural awareness training to over 500 university students per year and conducting research and writing research articles. She currently has six research papers published in international journals and has three more currently with a Journal awaiting review.

Nicole’s other role is as Go4fun Hunter New England Area manager. This role consists of training Aboriginal staff to deliver a 10 week healthy lifestyle program (go4fun) in their community, and Nicole also travels over the Hunter New England area setting up the Go4fun program in schools and Aboriginal communities. She has worked in the health sector for over 20 years and worked in Aboriginal health for 15 years.

Nicole’s passion is nutrition and living a healthy lifestyle and she believes we need to educate and give knowledge to our people about the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and prevention of chronic diseases. She is involved with national, state and local committees and organisations, and also involved in a state research ethics committee.  Nicole has presented at many conferences over Australia on different topics, especially health. She enjoys empowering other Aboriginal people to attend university and obtain a degree, and also speaks to a lot of school children and encourage them to finish school and follow their dreams to get to university. Nicole sees her main role in life as making sure her four beautiful children and her gorgeous grandson grow up strong and healthy.

Deputy Chairperson – Mr Trevor Ritchie

DSC_0372Trevor Ritchie is a Kaurna man from Adelaide, South Australia. Growing up he spent much of his time alternating between the Yorke Peninsula and the west coast of South Australia, both in Aboriginal missions. Trevor’s family settled down in Adelaide so he and his siblings could have consistency and concentrate on their education. Trevor was 28 when he finished his Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy) in 2013, and is the first Aboriginal person to graduate from the University of South Australia with this degree.

Click here to read more about Trevor’s Journey into Allied Health.

 

 

Graduate Director – Mr Stephen Corporal

Stephen is an Eastern Arrernte man (on his mother’s side) who was born in Townsville and has lived in the southeast Queensland area for many years. He was involved in counselling and welfare work in the Brisbane Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community for more than 10 years before completing his Bachelor of Social Work and Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) degrees at UQ in 2003. During this time he was announced the 2003 SBS Valedictorian for his work with students at the University as President of the Social Work Students Association (SWSA).

In 2006-07, Stephen was President of the Social Work Alumni at UQ, the Indigenous Postgraduate Representative for James Cook University’s Postgraduate Student Association and the IPLO on CAPA in 2005. He has completed a Masters of Social Policy at JCU and is now working on a PhD into Attrition rates of Indigenous students within Health related courses in Higher Education.

Stephen has worked at UQ from 2005 to 2011 as the Senior Student Support person at the Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Studies who managed the Unit’s student support functions and supervised the Student Support Officers at all UQ campuses. This included identifying and assessing the specific needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in relation to recruitment and retention then planning, designing and running support programs in response to these needs.

Stephen was seconded to the UQ School of Medicine as the Indigenous Recruitment Manager for the last 2 years at UQ. He is currently the Project Officer in the Griffith University Health Group continuing to grow the numbers of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander professionals within higher education. Stephen has lectured on working in and with Aboriginal people to Social Work and Human Services students during this time.

Graduate Director – Ms Patricia Councillor

DSC_0340Ms Patricia Councillor is a Yamaji Naaguja nyarlu from the Midwest of Western Australia and a mother and grandmother with three children and five grandchildren. Patricia aka Patty has worked for her community for many years after her divorce and return to Perth from San Diego, California. The first several years back in Australia, Patty’s focus was on her three young children, specifically her daughter who was diagnosed with Autism at age five.

Over the years Patty has worked in various roles across the education, community service and health sectors, eventually working in mental health and enrolling to do a Bachelor of Health Science (Mental Health) via Charles Sturt University. Patty commenced studying in 2010 and completed her degree in 2013, all the while caring for her daughter, who had now developed a psychotic disorder as well as epilepsy and also working fulltime in the mental health area. Patty returned back to her home of Meekatharra to work with her countrymen, still in mental health, and after several years she returned back to Perth to be with her daughter who had relapsed and needed her mother’s support and guidance. Patty is now studying a qualification in Counselling.

“Through my work in mental health and my personal and community life, I came to realise that a lot of the mental health, and drug and alcohol issues, were in fact grief and loss, vicarious, trans generational traumas and situational crises that are rampant in Aboriginal and Torre Strait Islander families. Even at the triage stage, all that is needed is to listen to what the person or their family was saying and scratch below the substance use and behavioural issues to see truly what was going on. Supporting them with that until they could stand alone and support themselves and their family themselves and to help them through the barrage of obstacles and red tape that always seems to hinder my peoples journey to wellness. My work is not about just the one person but their whole family and support network.”

Graduate Director – Ms Danielle Dries

DSC_0349Danielle Dries is a Kaurna woman from South Australia, born in Perth, and grew up between Canberra and the United States. Danielle graduated with a Bachelor of Physiotherapy from Charles Sturt University in 2011. During her studies, Danielle developed an interest in rural and remote health after her placements in Orange, Dubbo, Coffs Harbour (NSW), and Sorrel (TAS).

After working in Sydney, Danielle started studying medicine due to job limitations for physiotherapists in remote locations. For the past two years, Danielle has been the Indigenous Health Officer for the National Rural Health Student Network which has over 9 000 multidisciplinary members across Australia. In this position, Danielle actively promoted Indigenous community engagement, the importance of a quality Indigenous Health curriculum, as well as more rural placements and graduate jobs in allied health, nursing and medicine.

Danielle has been a Close the Gap Ambassador, a mentor for both the IAHA health fusion challenge and Murra Mullangari program, and was a key speaker at the Future Health Leaders Indigenous Health Forum. Danielle has organised cultural immersion trips, workshops and events for her peers and wider community. A major event she helped transform was ANU’s Close the Gap event, which is now a two day conference with more than 130 health students attending the previous two years.

Click here to read more about Danielle’s Journey into Allied Health.

Graduate Director – Mr Matthew West

DSC_0333Matthew West is a proud Wiradjuri man from Wellington in western NSW currently living and working on the NSW Central Coast. In 2013, Mr West graduated from the University of Newcastle with a Bachelor of Podiatry. In 2015, Mr West completed his honours by research focusing on how his local Indigenous community currently accesses podiatry services. Mr West is currently completing his PhD which is focused on developing a screening and intervention program to improve the current rate of amputation among the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community. Mr West currently holds concurrent positions as an Associate Lecturer and Clinical Educator at the University of Newcastle and is also Board Member of the Darkinjung Local Aboriginal Land Council.

In 2013, Mr West was the first person to successfully complete the Central Coast Indigenous Health Cadetship Program from an allied health discipline. Through this program, Mr West worked as a new graduate podiatrist in the Central Coast Local Health District (CCLHD) where he gained extensive experience in wound care, diabetes assessment and general podiatric care. Mr West has helped co-ordinate and provide foot health screenings at the annual CCLHD NAIDOC event since 2012. Following his time at the CCLHD he received a position at the University of Newcastle as an Associate Lecturer and Clinical Supervisor to compliment his Honours studies.

Student Director – Ms Tracy Hardy 

DSC_0374Tracy, a Kamilaroi woman born and raised in St George Qld, has resided on Kabi Kabi country, in Maroochydore Qld for the past 9 years.  Tracy has strong ties in community as a proactive member of the North Coast Aboriginal Corporation for Community Health as well as the Nungeena Aboriginal Corporation for Women’s Business.

Tracy is in her third year of Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics at the University of the Sunshine Coast in 2016 and has been accepted to undertake embedded honours research as part of her degree.  Tracy strives to develop as a well-rounded allied health professional throughout her degree and future career and is committed to developing and strengthening her knowledge, leadership, communication and governance skills.  Tracy is a strong advocate for cultural competency and Australia’s First Peoples and upon completion of her degree, aspires to work collaboratively within community and assist in closing the gap on nutrition related chronic disease and improving health and wellbeing for her people.

Tracy aims to support fellow Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander allied health students in growing as professionals by providing encouragement and information regarding networking opportunities and offering a platform to have their voices heard.

Click here to meet the 2016 Board Members.

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Chairperson – Ms Faye McMillan

FAYE2014Faye is a Wiradjuri woman from Trangie, Central Western New South Wales. She completed her pharmacy degree at the Charles Sturt University in 2001. Her interest in pharmacy began when she was a pharmacy assistant in Trangie for three years. She is the first Aboriginal person in Australia to gain a pharmacy degree and to go onto registration as a pharmacist.Faye is currently the Director of the Djirruwang Program, School of Nursing, Midwifery and Indigenous Health at Charles Sturt University, Wagga Campus. Prior to her position at Charles Sturt, she was the Postgraduate Indigenous Health Program coordinator at the University of Wollongong to work in the Indigenous Health program. She has also worked as a pharmacist in remote areas such as the Tiwi Islands. She has undertaken further study and completed a Masters in Indigenous Health. Outside of work Faye is actively involved in her Aboriginal community. She is currently a member of the Trangie Local Aboriginal Land Council and has been a past board member of that organization. Faye has two beautiful boys, Kye and Ethan.

Deputy Chairperson – Ms Rebecca Allnutt

BEC2014Rebecca lives in Alice Springs, Northern Territory. She has a double major in Psychology, as well as a post graduate diploma in Audiology, both from Queensland University.

Rebecca has worked for fifteen years in Indigenous Ear Health with the Northern Territory and Commonwealth Governments. She commenced her own Audiology practice in March 2011 in Alice Springs with three other business partners. She also does community work with the NT Government Hearing Services.

In 2008, Rebecca was awarded a Public Service Medal for her services to Indigenous Ear Health.

 

Graduate Director – Ms Jane Havelka

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Jane Havelka is a Wiradjuri woman from Narromine Wongabon currently residing in Wagga Wagga, NSW. Jane is currently the Clinical Coordinator/Lecturer for the Djirruwang (Mental Health) Program in the School of Nursing, Midwifery & Indigenous Health at Charles Sturt University. Jane has worked in various positions within the Djirruwang Program over the past ten years. With this experience Jane brings a wealth of knowledge to IAHA around Indigenous mental health, community and Indigenous health more broadly. She is currently studying her Doctorate of Health Science. In addition she is a qualified Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health First Aid Instructor. Jane is extremely proud to be a newly appointed Director on the Board of Indigenous Allied Health of Australia (IAHA) for 2013.

Graduate Director – Ms Nicole Turner

NICOLE2014Nicole is a Kamilaroi woman, her grandmother was part of the stolen generation, and she currently lives on the coast near Kempsey. She is one of very few qualified Aboriginal community Nutritionists in Australia. Nicole currently works in 2 roles… She is an Indigenous health academic with Newcastle University and within that role she delivers cultural awareness training to over 500 university students per year and conducting research and writing research articles. She currently has six research papers published in international journals and has three more currently with a Journal awaiting review.

Nicole’s other role is as Go4fun Hunter New England Area manager. This role consists of training Aboriginal staff to deliver a 10 week healthy lifestyle program (go4fun) in their community, and Nicole also travels over the Hunter New England area setting up the Go4fun program in schools and Aboriginal communities. She has worked in the health sector for over 20 years and worked in Aboriginal health for 15 years.

Nicole’s passion is nutrition and living a healthy lifestyle and she believes we need to educate and give knowledge to our people about the importance of maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and prevention of chronic diseases. She is involved with national, state and local committees and organisations, and also involved in a state research ethics committee.  Nicole has presented at many conferences over Australia on different topics, especially health. She enjoys empowering other Aboriginal people to attend university and obtain a degree, and also speaks to a lot of school children and encourage them to finish school and follow their dreams to get to university. Nicole sees her main role in life as making sure her four beautiful children and her gorgeous grandson grow up strong and healthy.

Graduate Director – Mr Trevor Ritchie

TREVOR2014Trevor Ritchie is a Kaurna man from Adelaide, South Australia. Growing up he spent much of his time alternating between the Yorke Peninsula and the west coast of South Australia, both in Aboriginal missions. Trevor’s family settled down in Adelaide so he and his siblings could have consistency and concentrate on their education. Trevor was 28 when he finished his Bachelor of Applied Science (Occupational Therapy) in 2013, and is the first Aboriginal person to graduate from the University of South Australia with this degree.

Click here to read more about Trevor’s Journey into Allied Health.

Graduate Director – Mr Tom Brideson

Tom is a Kamilaroi/Gomeroi man from north-west NSW. Since 2007 Tom has been the State-wide Coordinator for the NSW Aboriginal Mental Health Workforce Program. For more than 20 years Tom has been actively involved in Aboriginal mental health developments including: health policy; social and emotional wellbeing; clinical mental health care; suicide prevention; and education. Tom has published articles regarding the Aboriginal mental health workforce and advocates for emerging degree based professions across all health and human services. The most recent publication was a chapter in the second edition of Working Together: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Mental Health and Wellbeing Principles and Practice. Tom sits on a range of Local, State and National mental health leadership committees and projects to improve the mental health of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

Tom is an active participant in IAHA’s Governance at a Board level and more broadly throughout representation and stakeholder engagement in the health and mental health areas. Tom is passionate about improving health outcomes and career opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. He states “Those who have gone before us have provided sound foundations and made us proud. The children following us need to be equally proud of our contributions. We are the only ones who can make our contribution count.”

Graduate Director – Mr Stephen Corporal

Stephen corporal.jpgStephen is an Eastern Arrernte man (on his mother’s side) who was born in Townsville and has lived in the southeast Queensland area for many years. He was involved in counselling and welfare work in the Brisbane Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community for more than 10 years before completing his Bachelor of Social Work and Bachelor of Arts (Psychology) degrees at UQ in 2003. During this time he was announced the 2003 SBS Valedictorian for his work with students at the University as President of the Social Work Students Association (SWSA).

In 2006-07, Stephen was President of the Social Work Alumni at UQ, the Indigenous Postgraduate Representative for James Cook University’s Postgraduate Student Association and the IPLO on CAPA in 2005. He has completed a Masters of Social Policy at JCU and is now working on a PhD into Attrition rates of Indigenous students within Health related courses in Higher Education.

Stephen has worked at UQ from 2005 to 2011 as the Senior Student Support person at the Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Studies who managed the Unit’s student support functions and supervised the Student Support Officers at all UQ campuses. This included identifying and assessing the specific needs of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in relation to recruitment and retention then planning, designing and running support programs in response to these needs.

Stephen was seconded to the UQ School of Medicine as the Indigenous Recruitment Manager for the last 2 years at UQ. He is currently the Project Officer in the Griffith University Health Group continuing to grow the numbers of Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander professionals within higher education. Stephen has lectured on working in and with Aboriginal people to Social Work and Human Services students during this time.

Graduate Director – Ms Patricia Councillor

Ms Patricia CouncillorMs Patricia Councillor is a Yamaji Naaguja nyarlu from the Midwest of Western Australia and a mother and grandmother with three children and five grandchildren. Patricia aka Patty has worked for her community for many years after her divorce and return to Perth from San Diego, California. The first several years back in Australia, Patty’s focus was on her three young children, specifically her daughter who was diagnosed with Autism at age five.

Over the years Patty has worked in various roles across the education, community service and health sectors, eventually working in mental health and enrolling to do a Bachelor of Health Science (Mental Health) via Charles Sturt University. Patty commenced studying in 2010 and completed her degree in 2013, all the while caring for her daughter, who had now developed a psychotic disorder as well as epilepsy and also working fulltime in the mental health area. Patty returned back to her home of Meekatharra to work with her countrymen, still in mental health, and after several years she returned back to Perth to be with her daughter who had relapsed and needed her mother’s support and guidance. Patty is now studying a qualification in Counselling.

“Through my work in mental health and my personal and community life, I came to realise that a lot of the mental health, and drug and alcohol issues, were in fact grief and loss, vicarious, trans generational traumas and situational crises that are rampant in Aboriginal and Torre Strait Islander families. Even at the triage stage, all that is needed is to listen to what the person or their family was saying and scratch below the substance use and behavioural issues to see truly what was going on. Supporting them with that until they could stand alone and support themselves and their family themselves and to help them through the barrage of obstacles and red tape that always seems to hinder my peoples journey to wellness. My work is not about just the one person but their whole family and support network.”

Student Director – Vacant

 

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IAHA 2017 Student Representative Committee (SRC)

The IAHA Student Representative Committee (SRC)* in 2017 consists of Kirrilaa Johnstone, Will Kennedy, Lauren Hutchinson, Zoe King, Nicola Barker, Jed Fraser, Troy Crowther and Kate Thompson. 

More information about the SRC and other student information, check out the IAHA student page.

*The IAHA SRC is comprised of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander IAHA student members and was established to advise the IAHA Board of Directors on issues and strategies affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander allied health students. The SRC works to promote careers in allied health and IAHA membership benefits, including student support opportunities to the wider public, especially to young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.

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Click here to meet the 2016 Student Representative Committee (SRC) Members.

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IAHA 2016 Student Representative Committee (SRC)

 

2016 Chairperson & Student Representative – Tracy Hardy

Tracy HardyTracy, a Kamilaroi woman born and raised in St George Qld, has resided on Kabi Kabi country, in Maroochydore Qld for the past 9 years.  Tracy has strong ties in community as a proactive member of the North Coast Aboriginal Corporation for Community Health as well as the Nungeena Aboriginal Corporation for Women’s Business.

Tracy is in her third year of Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics at the University of the Sunshine Coast in 2016 and has been accepted to undertake embedded honours research as part of her degree.  Tracy strives to develop as a well-rounded allied health professional throughout her degree and future career and is committed to developing and strengthening her knowledge, leadership, communication and governance skills.  Tracy is a strong advocate for cultural competency and Australia’s First Peoples and upon completion of her degree, aspires to work collaboratively within community and assist in closing the gap on nutrition related chronic disease and improving health and wellbeing for her people.

Tracy aims to support fellow Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander allied health students in growing as professionals by providing encouragement and information regarding networking opportunities and offering a platform to have their voices heard.

2016 Deputy Chairperson & Student Representative – Celeste Brand

Celeste

Celeste Brand was born in Arrernte country in Alice Springs. She is the fifth generation to live there after her great-great grandmother travelled from Arabana country in South Australia. She started studying a Bachelor of Social Work at Charles Darwin University in 2011, however she moved to Perth in 2012 to continue her studies internally at Curtin University. She is about to enter her fourth and final year of her studies.

In the school holidays, Celeste returns to Alice Springs where she works at the Alice Springs Hospital as a cadet – part of the Indigenous Cadetship Support (ICS). Returning to Alice Springs also allows Celeste to come home and spend time with her family and friends.

Celeste is passionate about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs and contributes in discussions when and where possible. Living in Alice Springs and being with her family has made her proud of her culture and with the support and influences of particularly the women in her life, they have inspired to her to see the life between two cultures. By studying Social Work, Celeste believes she can work with both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people to reduce barriers and improve the quality of life for her people.

Student Representative – Kirrilaa Johnstone

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Kirrilaa is a Ngiyampaa-Barkindji Woman who was born in Broken Hill NSW. After spending most of her life in Canberra she now lives in Wollongong and is studying Exercise Science and Indigenous Health at University of Wollongong (UOW). Kirrilaa has always wanted to work with kids and so upon graduating and hopefully completing her masters in Exercise Physiology, Kirrilaa hopes to start a small travelling clinic in the Northern Territory with other Indigenous allied health professionals, that services children in small communities and teaches them life skills to improve their health outcomes. Kirrilaa also has a strong interest in Mental Health, particularly of youth in rural and remote communities and also hopes to one day contribute to reducing the high rates of Indigenous Youth Suicide.

 

Student Representative – Lauren Hutchinson

Lauren HutchinsonLauren Hutchinson is a Wiradjuri women, born and raised in the small town of Molong NSW. She is currently living in Brisbane undertaking aBachelor of Vision Science/Masters of Optometry Degrees of which she is about to enter her fourth year.

Upon graduating it has always been her goal to go back and work in rural and remote areas, and to give back to her community as much as she can. She is very passionate about the specific health needs of her people, especially in these isolated areas, where eye health is very often over looked, and many people go blind as a result. She hopes to one day be part of the process of eliminating diseases found in remote Australia that are not seen in any other developed country. She states “I am extremely grateful for the opportunity to be apart of the IAHA SRC and am very excited for the challenges and opportunities it will present.”

Student Representative – Mark Mann

Mark MannMark Mann, a Gunditjmara-Wiradjuri man was born in South Australia and lived between Victoria, Queensland, Sydney and Adelaide growing up. Mark has resided in Melbourne/Kinglake for the past 15 years, after working for the Australian Army in Infantry and Signals for 13 years. Mark has strong ties to the community currently working with the Fitzroy Stars as head trainer and has qualifications in Aromatherapy, Massage Therapy and Sports Training. Mark also sits on the advisory council for the Banyule Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Committee and volunteers his time working as a presenter on 3KND (Kool n Deadly) community radio station in Preston.

Mark is currently studying a Bachelor of Health Science/Bachelor of Applied Science (Osteopathy) at the RMIT in Bundoora.  Mark takes a holistic approach to practice and is passionate about supporting people to better access allied health services and improved health and wellbeing outcomes for communities.

Upon the completion of his degree Marks goal is to setup a Rural/Remote practice, raise awareness of Osteopathy and work at the highest possible level in a professional sporting field.

Student Representative – Nellie Pollard-Wharton

NellieNellie is a Kooma Woman, born in Townsville and raised in Brisbane and then Sydney, where she has lived for the past 16 years.  Nellie has always been very driven by issues of social justice that continue to surround First Nations people.  After completing her HSC she began Tertiary Studies, before deciding to leave to join the workforce and travel.  She is now a mother and has chosen to pursue her passion for Indigenous rights by studying a Bachelor of Social Work at the University of New South Wales (UNSW).  She is currently in her 2nd year of study and an Indigenous Social Work Cadet with the Sydney Local Health District.  This role sees Nellie complete up to 12 weeks of full time employment each year for the remainder of her degree.  She will be finishing up her first 12 week block with the Social Work Department at RPA Hospital in Camperdown, an inner city hospital in Sydney in early February.

Nellie is a strong believer in health and social justice being closely intertwined, if not intrinsically linked.  She is excited to engage with her peers and co-workers and promote the importance of holistic approaches to treatment, recovery and most of all prevention of certain health issues that continue to affect our people. Once Nellie finishes her degree, she sees herself continuing to work in the Hospital setting, with a primary focus on women and babies.

Student Representative – Will Kennedy

William 3Will is a proud Wiradjuri man that was born in Camperdown N.S.W and spent most of his childhood growing up at Blacktown, NSW.  He was lucky enough to complete a floor and wall tiling apprenticeship straight after High School. Fast forward 16 years and he has been living in Forster NSW, coming and going from the age of 17 for work development.  He is now in his second year of studying a Bachelor of Health Science (Mental Health) at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga. He works part time as an Indigenous Family Mental Health Worker and also casual supervisor at the Local Golf Club. Will’s biggest passion is to lead by example and to make time for others less fortunate than himself. He is a qualified Life guard and also a Trainer and Assessor for S.L.S.A (Surf Life Saving Australia). For the year of 2016 Will was also nominated and elected President of the Local BodyBoarding association in Forster Tuncurry. He states that “It is with pride and enthusiasm that I am lucky enough to join the IAHA family to continue to learn personally and grow professionally.”

Student Representative – Zoe King

IMG_6429 (002)Zoe King is a Bundjalung woman from Casino, now living on Yuggera land in Brisbane and attending the University of Queensland.

In 2016 Zoe will enter the third year of her undergraduate career studying a Bachelor of Speech Pathology with Honors. At this point she is incredibly interested in paediatric speech and language pathology, and is excited to be starting clinical practice this semester at the Murri School along with 3 of her peers from her cohort.

Zoe attended the Indigenous Allied Health Australia (IAHA) 2015 National Conference and Health Fusion Team Challenge (HFTC) and had the opportunity to attend multiple sessions with keynote speakers that reflected interests pertinent to her chosen area of study. She states that she gained knowledge and was able to meet professionals that have inspired her future career path.

Zoe feels honored with the opportunity to hold a position on the Student Representative Council for 2016. She looks forward to contributing to this role and acting as a voice of IAHA at The University of Queensland, as well as attending IAHA events and personal development workshops throughout the year.

Click here to meet the 2015 Student Representative Committee (SRC) Members.

IAHA 2015 Student Representative Committee (SRC)

SRC Chairperson – Sophie L’Estrange

sophie

I’m Sophie L’Estrange, a girl of Kalkadoon heritage who was born and raised in Wiradjuri country. I’m currently in my second year of Oral Health (Therapy/Hygiene) at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga. I have always been taught by my mother to be proud of my Aboriginality and to have big aspirations. I love to travel and I enjoy social sport such as netball and touch football and I’m very passionate about Indigenous health.

I attended Forbes High School for the better part of four years, and in 2011 I was the School Vice Captain. I am very active within my local community and a huge advocate for Indigenous Education. In high school I was always involved with the Indigenous activities and ceremonies at the school and in town. Earlier in 2014 I was chosen as a finalist for the NSW Women In Mining Aspiring Star Award, for my work with the Northparkes Mines in encouraging tertiary education in Indigenous students in our local region.

I attended three different high schools, and I believe through this mobility I have learnt great people skills that make me very approachable and warming to anyone. I’m really excited to a part of the IAHA SRC and look forward to meeting with and hearing from many of the students. I always pride myself on setting an example for others and being someone that young Indigenous people can be inspired by.

SRC Deputy Chairperson – Celeste Brand

Celeste

Celeste Brand is a 24 year old woman born in Arrernte country in Alice Springs, where she has lived for 19 years of her life (she lived in Adelaide for three years while her mum was studying). She is the fifth generation to live there after her great-great grandmother migrated from Arabana country in South Australia. She started studying a Bachelor of Social Work at Charles Darwin University in 2011, however she moved to Perth in 2012 to continue her studies internally at Curtin University. She is about to enter her third year.

In the school holidays, Celeste returns to Alice Springs where she works at the Alice Springs Hospital in the Social Work Department. This work allows her to see many Aboriginal cultures who are impacted by various health issues. Having work in Alice Springs also allows Celeste to come home and spend time with her family and friends.

Celeste is passionate about Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander affairs and contributes in discussions when and where possible. Living in Alice Springs and being with her family has made her proud of her culture and with the support and influences of particularly the women in her life, they have inspired to her to see the life between two cultures. By studying Social Work, Celeste believes she can work with both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people to reduce barriers and improve the quality of life for her people.

Celeste really enjoys family time and misses them incredibly when in Perth however she knows she is doing something positive for herself, her family and her culture.

Student Representative – Nathan Canuto

nathancanuto

Nathan Canuto was born in Cairns, Queensland, and descends from the Ahmat Family of the Torres Strait.  He is a mature age student studying his final year of a Bachelor of Behavioural Science degree (Psychology) at Charles Darwin University in the Northern Territory.

Further to living on Badu Island in Torres Strait in his late teens, Nathan has represented various regional and remote youth engagement programs throughout Far North Queensland and the Darwin area.

Nathan is currently an Indigenous Student Mentor at both Charles Darwin University and Kormilda College in Darwin.  Upon degree completion, Nathan aspires to assist the psychological well being of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander youth.

Student Representative – Ashleigh Hull

Ashleigh

Ashleigh Hull is a Barkindji woman with strong ties to the Wiradjuri people. Ashleigh was raised in the small town of Narromine and attended schooling in both Narromine and Trangie. In 2008 Ashleigh moved to the outback town of Bourke NSW and has lived there since.

Ashleigh is employed with Western NSW Local Health District as a Trainee Aboriginal Mental Health Worker and is currently studying her 3rd and final year of a Bachelor of Health Science (Mental Health) at Charles Sturt University in Wagga Wagga through mixed mode. In 2014 Ashleigh was elected by her fellow classmates as the student representative for her 2nd year cohort on the Djirruwang Program student representative body. Ashleigh was a passionate and caring advocate for her fellow students and often went above and beyond the expected roles of the representative to ensure a positive university experience for all students.

In 2014 Ashleigh was selected to be a member of the Western NSW Local Health District Future Health Leaders Advisory Group. The advisory group is made up of early career professionals who meet with the Executives of the Local Health District to problem solve and discuss strategies for addressing issues ranging from recruitment and retention to the use of technology in health. Ashleigh is continuing this membership into 2015 and looks forward to making positive changes to health care.

Ashleigh is thankful for the opportunity to represent the student members of Indigenous Allied Health Australia and is keen to take on this new and exciting challenge.

Student Representative – Devinia Wainwright

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Devinia Wainwright born in Carnarvon, Western Australia and descending from the Pau family from Erub (Darnley) Island in the Torres Strait. Bought up with strong connections to the Yamitji people in Carnarvon and with Torres Strait heritage, I feel strongly that its important that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders have access to quality Health Care and Education. I am currently working as an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Liaison Officer for Barwon Health at University Hospital Geelong VIC, and in my third year of Bachelor of Social Work at the Institute for Koori Education, Deakin, Waurn Ponds Geelong.

My interest for Social Work, Health and Social and Emotional Well- being in the future is to explore Art Therapy, Traditional Medicine and Healing for our people. I am passionate about the wider community understanding that although Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders are unique to our cultures, we all have individual needs and are on our own life long journeys. I see the future for our people working in collaboration with the wider community to address our health needs and close the life expectancy gap. I feel that recruiting and supporting more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders to deliver these services is the key, and I look forward to meeting and working people through IAHA and SRC in this journey.