Gail Mabo is a multi-disciplinary artist, currently residing in Townsville, whose practices include dance, acting and visual art. She was born in Queensland in 1965 to revered land rights activist Eddie Mabo and the late Bonita Mabo (who in 2013 was named as an Officer in the General Division of the Order of Australia).
After completing her early education at the first school for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders in Townsville, opened by her father in the 1970s, Gail studied dance at the Aboriginal and Islander Dance Theatre in Sydney from 1984 to 1987. She performed in Jimmy Chi’s Bran Nue Dae in its 1991 Sydney season and worked as a choreographer and dancer in Tracey Moffat's 1986 short film Watch Out and as an actor in Moffat’s Nice Coloured Girls in 1985. In 2005 she directed the stage show Koiki which was a performance based on the life of her father.
Patrick Dodson is a Yawuru man from Broome in Western Australia. He has dedicated his life work to being an advocate for constructive relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples based on mutual respect, understanding and dialogue. He is a recipient of the Sydney International Peace prize.
Patrick has extensive experience in Aboriginal Affairs, previously as Director of the Central and Kimberley Land Councils and as a Commissioner in the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody. He also served as inaugural Chair of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation and as Co-Chair of the Expert Panel for Constitutional Recognition of Indigenous Australians.
Prior to his endorsement by the Australian Labor Party as a Western Australian Senator in March 2016, Patrick was a member of the ANU Council, Adjunct Professor at the University of Notre Dame (Broome) and Co-Chair of the National Referendum Council.
Professor Marcia Langton AM is an anthropologist and geographer, and since 2000 has held the Foundation Chair of Australian Indigenous Studies at the University of Melbourne. She has produced a large body of knowledge in the areas of political and legal anthropology, Indigenous agreements and engagement with the minerals industry, and Indigenous culture and art. Her role in the Empowered Communities project under contract to the Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet and as a member of the Expert Panel on Constitutional Recognition of Indigenous Australians are evidence of Professor Langton's academic reputation, policy commitment and impact, alongside her role as a prominent public intellectual.
Her 2012 Boyer lecture series titled The Quiet Revolution: Indigenous People and the Resources Boom is one of her recent contributions to public debate and, added to her influence and reputation in government and private sector circles. In 1993 she was made a member of the Order of Australia in recognition of her work in anthropology and the advocacy of Aboriginal rights.
Professor Langton is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia, a Fellow of Trinity College, Melbourne and an Honorary Fellow of Emmanuel College at the University of Queensland. In 2016 Professor Langton was honoured as a University of Melbourne Redmond Barry Distinguished Professor. In further recognition as one of Australia’s most respected Indigenous Academics Professor Langton was in 2017 appointed as the first Associate Provost at the University of Melbourne.
Professor Davis is currently Pro Vice Chancellor UNSW and Acting Commissioner of the NSW Land and Environment Court and a member of the NSW Sentencing Council. An admitted solicitor of the Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory and Fellow of the Australian Academy of Law, Professor Davis is a constitutional law professor specialising in constitutional design and constitution-building and one of the nation’s leading public constitutional lawyers.
Professor Davis was a member of the Prime Minister’s Expert Panel on constitutional recognition of Indigenous peoples in 2011 and a member of the Prime Minister’s Referendum Council (2015-2017). Professor Davis has served a lengthy diplomatic career in the United Nations over the past 18 years as a Fellow of the UNHCHR in Geneva, an expert member and chair of the UNPFII in New York (2011-2016), an expert in peacemaking and preventive diplomacy for UNITAR and an expert member of the UN Human Rights Council's EMRIP in Geneva.
In New York, she was actively involved in the work of UN Women. Professor Davis’s outstanding career has been recognised in 2016 through the United Nations Association Queensland Community award for dedication and contribution to the Queensland community reflecting the United Nations principles; as one of Australia’s 100 Women of Influence by the Australian Financial Review and Westpac, and one of NITV’s 20 inspiring black women who changed Australia.
Prior to this, Professor Davis received the University of Queensland, ES Meyers Medal (2015); the United Nations Certificate of Recognition for Service to the United Nations (2014 and 2017); the University of Queensland Alumni award Indigenous Community Impact Award (2014); the National Australia Bank/Women’s Agenda Inspirational Ambassador Award (2013); and one of Australia’s 100 Women of Influence by the Australian Financial Review and Westpac (2016, 2013).
Professor Davis is a Cobble Cobble woman of the Barrungam nation in south west Queensland and of South Sea Islander descent (Vanuatu). She grew up in country Queensland in the North Burnett region, including Mulgildie, Monto, Hervey Bay and then, in Eagleby, Logan City.
Sturt Glacken SC is at the Victorian Bar. He was called to the Bar in 1991 and appointed Senior Council in 2008. Sturt is one of the foremost native title barristers in the country. He was senior counsel in Northern Territory v Griffiths Timber Creek Compensation from when the matter as heard at first instance until the recent High Court judgment in the matter. Other notable cases Sturt has appeared in include: Western Australia v Ward , Wurridjal v Commonwealth, Northern Territory v Arnhem Land Aboriginal Land Trust (the Blue Mud Bay case) to name just a few.
Jill Hennessy is the Attorney-General and Minister for Workplace Safety in the second Andrews Labor Government.
She entered the Victorian Parliament as the Member for Altona District in 2010 and held a number of shadow ministerial roles before she was elected to government in 2014, including public transport, anti-corruption, corrections, crime prevention and women.
As Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services in the first Andrews Labor Government, Jill was a driving force behind a number of landmark reforms that have changed the lives of Victorians.
Jill played a leading role in:
In 2017, legislation introduced by Jill seeking to allow Victorians with a terminal illness to access voluntary assisted dying passed the Victorian Parliament; the first of any state in Australia.
Jill has a passion for reform and in her current roles is focussed on delivering key measures to protect working people – through new workplace manslaughter and wage theft laws.
She is committed to modernising the Victorian legal system to deliver strong, smart, fair and transparent justice, making it more accessible, responsive to victims, the judiciary and legal profession more diverse, and delivering reforms to drive safety, equality and protection of the less powerful.
Jill holds a Masters of Public and International Law, a Bachelor of Laws and a Bachelor of Arts.
Jill is a former lawyer, political adviser, board member of Western Health, Western Region Health, and former Chair of the Victorian Working Families Council.
Jamie Lowe is a Djabwurrung man and the Chief Executive Officer of the Eastern Maar Aboriginal Corporation, appointed by the Federal Court to hold native title rights and interests for Eastern Maar citizens over their country in southwestern Victoria. Jamie is currently leading negotiations with the State of Victoria for settlement of further Eastern Maar claims.
Jamie is also the Chair of the National Native Title Council, a peak body set up to maximise the contribution of native title to achieving and improving the economic, social and cultural participation of indigenous people. Jamie is also a director of the Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporations and advocates for the rights of traditional owners within the State of Victoria.
Jamie has a background in both government and non-government sectors and has expertise and skills in governance, management, strategic planning and economic development. Jamie believes that creating economic independence and maintaining and growing cultural identity are key to creating a self-determining nation of Aboriginal people.
Marcus Stewart is a Nira illim bulluk man of the Taungurung Nation. He is a seasoned negotiator and strategist with more than 15 years’ experience in Aboriginal affairs. He has held several senior positions in management and possesses renowned experience across several levels of government. He has assisted in the implementation of a number of strategies and policies through senior roles in State Government and as the CEO of Taungurung Clans Aboriginal Corporation.
His broad understanding of politics, policy and the challenges facing Traditional Owners gives Marcus the ability to lead the Federation and be a voice of change. He is a committed believer in ensuring Traditional Owners are at the forefront of the decision-making process for self-determination and in achieving economic independence. He remains passionate about forging new pathways to improve outcomes for Aboriginal families and communities.
Dr Ormond-Parker was born in Darwin and of Alyawarr decent from the Barkly tablelands region of the Northern Territory. His current ARC-funded research is on Aboriginal Remote Narrowcast TV and the Audiovisual Archive. Dr Ormond-Parker's areas of interest include Aboriginal cultural heritage, history of medical collections, history of collecting Aboriginal remains, archives, cultural heritage and culture as an Indigenous social determinant of health. He has been involved in advocacy, policy development, research and negotiations at the local, national and international level focused on Indigenous communities in the area of information technology, cultural heritage, materials conservation and repatriation. He is currently a member of the Australian Heritage Council, a principal adviser to the Australian Government on heritage matters and a member of the Advisory Committee on Indigenous Repatriation, Department of Communications and the Arts.
Central Land Council policy manager, Dr Josie Douglas, leads the council’s advocacy and research across policy areas ranging from land rights, remote housing and education to constitutional reform and treaty.
Josie has worked in community controlled organisations and held senior research positions at the CSIRO and the Charles Darwin University.
In 2017, she was awarded the W.H. Stanner Award for her PhD research on young people and intergenerational transmission and acquisition of ecological knowledge.
Josie is descended from the Wardaman people whose traditional lands lie to the south-west of Katherine in the Northern Territory and has lived and worked on the lands of Arrernte people in Alice Springs since 1991.
June Oscar AO is a proud Bunuba woman from the remote town of Fitzroy Crossing in Western Australia’s Kimberly region. She is a strong advocate for Indigenous Australian languages, social justice, women’s issues, and has worked tirelessly to reduce Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).
June has held a raft of influential positions including Deputy Director of the Kimberley Land Council, chair of the Kimberley Language Resource Centre and the Kimberley Interpreting Service and Chief Investigator with WA’s Lililwan Project addressing FASD.
She was appointed to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (1990) and was a winner of the 100 Women of Influence 2013 in the Social Enterprise and Not For Profit category. In 2015 June received the Menzies School of Health Research Medallion for her work with FASD.
June has a Bachelor's Degree in Business from the University of Notre Dame, Broome, Western Australia, and is currently writing her PhD. June is a co-founder of the Yiramalay Wesley Studio School and is a Community member of the Fitzroy Valley Futures Governing Committee.
In February 2017, she was awarded an honorary doctorate from Edith Cowan University.
June began her five-year term as Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner on April 3, 2017.
Kingsley Palmer has worked in many areas of Aboriginal Australia including the Northern Territory, Queensland, Western and South Australia. He has worked in a number of organisations as an anthropologist and is now a private anthropological consultant.
Kingsley has been involved in numerous native title claims over the last few decades and has authored expert anthropological reports, participated in conferences of experts and given evidence in the Federal Court on many occasions. Kingsley undertook the anthropological research for the Timber Creek compensation case which is currently before the High Court of Australia. Kingsley has also undertaken anthropological research and provided expert evidence for a number of other matters including cases brought in relation to the Aboriginal Land Rights Act (NT), criminal trials as well as undertaking research in relation to social impacts, community planning and management.
Kingsley has written numerous articles on the uses of anthropology within native title inquiries. He published a revised version of his expert report prepared for the combined Noongar native title application, Noongar People, Noongar Land (AIATSIS 2016). Recently he published Australian Native Title Anthropology through ANU Press (2018) https://press.anu.edu.au/publications/australian-native-title-anthropology)
Jason Mifsud is a proud member of the Eastern Maar people of the Gunditjmara nation in South West Victoria and for the past twenty years has been leading cultural change and organisational transformation across the community, corporate and government sectors.
Jason is currently the Managing Director of Mifsud Consulting. Mifsud Consulting excels in demystifying complex issues and focuses on practical, timely and measurable outcomes for their clients.
Prior to starting his own business, Jason was the Executive Director for Aboriginal Victoria at the Department of Premier and Cabinet where he led the whole-of government Aboriginal Affairs reform agenda between the Victorian Government and Victorian Aboriginal community. This included establishing the architecture and governance arrangements to embed Aboriginal self-determination in cultural, social and economic policy as well as the road-map to a Treaty agreement, an Australian first.
A former AFL player and coach, Jason was the first Executive Advisor on Indigenous and Multicultural Affairs for the Australian Football League (AFL) overseeing significant reach, growth and impact and was pivotal in establishing the AFL Indigenous Advisory Council.
Jason’s career has been underpinned by fearless leadership and tireless advocacy and negotiation for Indigenous rights, recognition and reconciliation.
REBECCA HUGHES is a Senior Associate in the planning and environment team at Ashurst, Sydney. Her practice includes environment, planning, litigation and indigenous land law, for clients including statutory authorities, Aboriginal Land Councils, and major corporations.
From 2013 to 2017, Rebecca worked as a lawyer at the Northern Land Council, Darwin, where she had day to day carriage of the Timber Creek Compensation Claim during the preparation for and hearing of the trial on quantum, and the Full Federal Court appeals.
Prior to that, Rebecca practiced in property, native title and environment law at Ashurst, Melbourne from 2009, before being seconded to the Northern Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency in Katherine, NT, and Telstra in Melbourne. Rebecca has an LLB (Hons), BA, and DML (French) from the University of Melbourne.
Sandra Pannell has a doctorate in anthropology from the University of Adelaide and currently works as a consultant anthropologist, with a professional focus on cultural heritage and Native Title research. Sandra has been engaged in Native Title research in Queensland, Western Australia, and the Northern Territory for nearly 25 years, and has undertaken extensive anthropological research in rural and remote Australia, and prepared connection material for numerous native title claims, to date, resulting in 17 successful determinations of Native Title. Sandra has also worked on Native Title compensation claims in the Northern Territory and in Queensland. She has also prepared key documentation enabling the National Heritage Listing of Queensland’s Wet Tropics World Heritage Area for its Indigenous cultural values and also the National Heritage Listing of the Fitzroy River catchment area in the Kimberley region of Western Australia, for its Indigenous cultural values. Sandra has held lecturing and senior research positions at the University of Adelaide, James Cook University, at the Centre for Resource and Environmental Studies at The Australian National University, and at the Rainforest Cooperative Research Centre in Cairns. Since 1985, she has also undertaken anthropological research in Indonesia and in Timor-Leste. Sandra is currently an Adjunct Associate Professor in the School of Social Sciences at the University of Western Australia and an Adjunct Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Anthropology, Archaeology and Sociology at James Cook University.
The British Columbia Treaty Commission is the independent and neutral body responsible for facilitating treaty negotiations among the governments of Canada, BC and First Nations in BC.
The Treaty Commission's primary role is to oversee the negotiation process to make sure that the parties are being effective and making progress in negotiations. The Treaty Commission has three roles: facilitation, funding and public information and education.