The following traditional owners have nominated as a candidate for the First Peoples’ Assembly of Victoria.
Nominees can choose whether to publish a telephone and/or email contact details.
|Download PDF version here|
I am a proud Nira-Balluk man of the Taungurung Nation. I am currently the CEO of Taungurung Land & Waters Council (TLaWC) and Non-Executive Director of Federation of Victorian Traditional Owner Corporations.
My strengths are within the areas of finance, compliance, relationship development and am a lateral thinker which I believe are skills that will be crucial through the inaugural period of the First Peoples Assembly. I have a real passion for working within the Traditional Owner space and genuinely make it a point to listen to & take on board community views when shaping my approach to a variety of issues. My goals for the Assembly are to provide a framework that acknowledges the sovereignty of each Nation and provides opportunity for genuine sharing of powers between the Victorian State Government and each Traditional Owner Nation.
I feel my experience will be valuable within the Assembly and will be complimentary to the variety of skills and cultural knowledge brought by other Assembly members. This in-turn will promote an environment for a strong and robust framework to be developed.
I am a Gunai man through my father with direct patrilineal blood connection to the Brabralung Clan. Our people recognise Boorun the pelican as the protector of all Gunai. I acknowledge my Yorta Yorta ancestry on my Mother’s side and my Gunditjmara ancestry on my Grandmother’s side.
My family have endlessly struggled for our people’s rights. They have been political activists and protesters providing the impetus for development of our Aboriginal community controlled organisations. They are strong advocates for Aboriginal health and education. They have tirelessly campaigned for sovereignty, self determination and recognition of the past atrocities that have been committed against our peoples. Staunch families. These are the values and principles that have been entrenched in me by my elders, my Grandmothers, my parents. If you know my family, you know me.
We are fed up with Government promises. There is mistrust in Government processes and we are tired of Aboriginal community politics. Yet, the opportunity for our clans to negotiate treaties is too important. I want to make sure we do it right.
Our clans, our language, our culture, our songs, our totems, our lore, our land. Our future.
|Colin Robert Hunter
I am an Elder of the Wurundjeri Council. I wish to be member so as the Wurundjeri have a voice in the process. That it needs to happen & needs to be with soviegn people. Better life out come for Aboriginal people, in Health, Education Justice land Right.
I’m a proud Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung Traditional Owner. My Aboriginal family have been fighting for better recognition of our rights and protection of our Cultural Heritage since European Settlement here in Melbourne since 1835. My Ancestors signed the Batman Treaty which was never recognised.
I was part of the Victorian Aboriginal Community Assembly in 2017. I feel passionate about seeing the Victorian Treaty become successful. It will give us a Voice with Government for a better future, our culture and land was never formally given up and I want to be part of this Journey to create a better, brighter future for our Aboriginal Community.
|Gary John Murray
My Community involvement on and off Woiwurrung has been over five decades in community and government positions from the 1960’s to now – my activist father being Stewart Murray JP;AM and activist grandfather being Pastor Sir Douglas Nicholls JP:MBE;OAM;KCVO;Bapa Mamus and former Governor of South Australia. I have a strong inherited position on inclusiveness, equity and Clan Based Treaties as Clans have priori rights (First Rights) across the 38 First Nations and the Right People, Right Country Principle. Being Wamba Wamba, Dhudhuroa, Wiradjeri, Yorta Yorta, Baraparapa, Dja Dja Wurrung and Wergaia Nations I understand the anger and the need to equitably correct the Treaty process for all unrecognised Nations/Clans.
I have strong school and university experiences in sport, human rights, law, Treaty and land justice, education, community, planning and development and environmental law. I hold or have held the following positions – Chairperson Victorian Aboriginal Health Service Cooperative Limited 2019, Board of Directors First Peoples Sports Foundation Aboriginal Corporation 2018-2019, Board of Directors Nicholls Foundation Aboriginal Corporation 2018-2019, Ballerrt Mooroop Working Group Glenroy Multifunctional Facility 2011-2019, Victorian Traditional Owner Land Justice Group 2005-2019, Victorian Treaty Interim Working Group Member 2016-2016 and Wimmera Native Title Holder Native Title Group 2005.
I pay my respects to the Wurundjeri people whose land I live and work on. I am a proud strong Gunditjmara woman of the Eastern Marr Traditional Owner Group. My grandmother is an Austin with family connections to Framlingham Mission. I am the child of a stolen generation my beautiful mother Myrtle and niece of legendary singer songwriter Archie Roach. I grew up in Collingwood in the Housing Commission. I am a strong passionate leader for my mob having worked in the criminal justice system, health, construction and child protection space. I have over 25 years within Government and in community organisations. I have seen the struggles of my family and community and now is the time for me to fight and stand even stronger. I will represent the views of my people and listen to the voice of my ancestors. I will make sure that our battlers of the community be heard and that our elders and youth have a voice to be heard even louder. I will support our cultural birthright to be treated with respect and that true self determination be a journey that begins today for us all not into the future.
|Stephen John Tregonning
I wish to assist the Treaty process in establishing constitutional change and recognition of indigenous people of Australia. I have worked in various community and government vocations. From working in these occupations, I have gained extensive knowledge which I believe would benefit
Tel: 03 8662 6300
My name is Rueben Berg and I am a proud Gunditjmara man. My Dad is from Framlingham, but I grew up in Melbourne where I live with my family, including two young kids. I have lots of experience working with our communities in the areas of employment, architecture, cultural heritage, boundary negotiations, environmental water management and even with Ultimate frisbee! I hope to bring my knowledge and understanding of how government works to make sure that our communities can get the best possible outcomes from the treaty process.
I want to make sure we are involved as key decision makers in important decisions that affect our lives, our communities, and our lands and waters.
I want to make sure we empower our communities, now and into the future, so that my kids, and all future generations, can continue to practice and celebrate the oldest continuous culture in the world.
I am Bunurong/Boonwurrung through my Aunty, who is an Elder and my mother. I grew up on Karuna Country and currently live and work on my Bunwurrang Lands. I grew up knowing that I could make a difference, and I have studied and worked to understand my family and my community’s history.
I have made time to be with my people and other First Nations people. Now, I work on my Bunwurrang Country for all our people. We need young voices at the table. I believe the Treaty Movement is a catalyst for a better Australia.
I embody my indigenous, mixed Australian identity. I am a strong woman, and I believe we can do this together.
My Name is Alfie Bamblett I am a strong proud Gunditjmara, Dja Dja Wurrung, Yorta Yorta and Wiradjuri man. Through my family and those community members past and present I have gained and still gaining a strong understand of fighting for the right of our people to have a say.
The treaty process has been a long one and we still have a way to go, but it is important to keep the conversation going. Learning is a lifetime experience and I’m stilling learning, I don’t have the answers but I’m willing to put my opion forward and listen to and respect the right of others to have an opion.
I have worked for many years in the Family Violence, Justice and Education space.
I am a Wurundjeri Woiwurrung elder that wishes to be a part of the First Peoples’ Assembly for Victoria in order to be a voice for our people, our community and our country. I want to help create a treaty for our future, because it is our time, our time to be heard, our time to take control, over our future.
Treaty will enable us to keep culture strong and alive the way we want it to happen, so that we are able to heal together and become even stronger than what we already are.
A Wiradjuri, Dja Dja Wurrung, and Waywurru man. A proud Father of 10 and Granfather of 16. I have been an active member of the Melbourne Aboriginal Community my entire life. Since I was 16 years of age, I have been working in and around Aboriginal affairs in Aboriginal Organisations. These organisations include, VAEAI, VACCA, VALS, Fitzroy Stars Gym, VACCHO, and VAHS. I also worked for 6 years in Victorian State Government in an Aboriginal Position. All of my working roles have allowed me to help the community in a positive and beneficial way.
I have been raised by a large Politicaly proud Family which has always prompted my keen interest in empowering our mob. I am known to be a great listener and I strongly believe in equality and equity for all our mob. This is why I wish to be on the First People’s assembly to ensure these measures are taking place. I hope that Treaty will allow for my belief and views to be heard and put into action for all our mob.
Gunditjmara and Gunaikurnai Elder, born in Fitzroy in 1942, the eldest of four children and only daughter to Harry Booth and Hannah (nee Lovett). As a child, my holidays were spent with my mother’s family in the Western District and my father’s in the east. The spirit of my rural cousins helped balance my restless urban nature.
From an early age, I understood the political milieu of being an urban Aboriginal woman. Both of my parents worked tirelessly for their community and would assist Aboriginal people in custody at the local police station, representing them in court and purchasing meals for them from the Rainbow Hotel in Fitzroy. The legacy of their efforts has provided myself with an endless source of inspiration. This inspiration and influence has prompted me to become a member of the First Peoples’ Assembly of Victoria.
My views on Treaty stem from the people, for the people. I believe Treaty should be run by communities allowing their rights and voices heard. I still have connections at grass roots level and I hear what people are saying.
I hope that treaty helps heal some of our peoples needs and hope they will be young and old.
Andrew Gardiner has withdrawn as a candidate in these elections. As the withdrawal occurred after the ballot draw and printing of election materials, his name will remain on the ballot.
I have a direct blood lineage to the Wamba Wamba (Gourmjanyuk), Yorta Yorta (Wallithica), Dja Dja Wurrung (Yung Balug), Dhudhuroa, Jupagalk and Baraparapa, with strong family ties to country. Our kinship and family structures are what binds us together and our family obligations, cultural values and kinship responsibilities are what keep our families and clans strong, healthy and balanced. Our lives are built on the foundations laid by those that came before us, and some day we will be the ancestors, and we have an obligation to leave a healthy world for those that come after us.
I want to ensure that the Treaty process upholds our rights and values, and that it respects our traditional kinship structures in our nations and clans, and that further development processes must be centred in our communities to have any legitimacy.
Treaties for our people will redefine and reaffirm relationships, and serve as a moral and legal compass to guide our interactions with the government. Treaties will be a tool to facilitate a new era of relations, one that upholds treaty obligations and rights, fulfills promises and creates new legally enforced government to nations agreements and constructive arrangements for our future.
I have been nominated to represent my people form the Dhudhuroa people which make the the far north east region of Victoria.
As much as it’s an honour to represent my people in these discussions, I belive am the best candidate given my background and experience in policy making, government and the private sector.
Lidia Thorpe has withdrawn as a candidate in these elections. As the withdrawal occurred after the ballot draw and printing of election materials, her name will remain on the ballot.
|Georgia Mae Capocchi-Hunter
My name is Georgia Mae Capocchi-Hunter and I am a proud Wurundjeri and Ngurai Illum Wurrung young woman. I was born and raised in Naarm and have been connected to my community and my culture since birth.
I am running as a candidate for the Treaty Assembly as I believe that young people and children need representation and a voice at the table. Thus far I believe we have been under appreciated and our voices have been unheard. This cannot continue as this treaty is our future – we will live under a Treaty for longer than we won’t and therefore we should have a say in how it shapes our future.
I believe treaty could be an amazing thing for our community as long as it is done correctly and in a way that is inclusive of everyone and is led by our community.
My hope or treaty is that our voices will be heard, our countries will be protected our futures will finally be in our hands.
I identify as a Gunditjmara – Djab Wurrung man and also have ancestral connections to Boon Wurrung, Wemba Wemba and Taungurung country. I grew up at the Framlingham settlement with a strong connection to country.
I’ve had a community based and political upbringing, and hold the history of Framingham and my ancestors as a source of strength and pride. I continue their legacy. I have been involved in many community and volunteer roles with a strong human and Indigenous rights focus. I am a lawyer currently working in the policy space to uphold children’s rights in out of home care and youth justice.
I also believe our struggle for rights and land justice should coincide and align with our cultural resurgence, through continuing, maintaining and strengthening cultural practices.
I see Treaty as a means to mend the unresolved conflict of European occupation of our sovereign lands. I will staunchly advocate for a Treaty framework that is truly just and equitable for our people. I will represent our community with the integrity of those ancestors I draw strength from.
|Esmerelda Glenda Bamblett
I am Moitheriban from the Bangerang Nation of the Goulburn Valley through my maternal grandmother Esmerelda Bamblett (nee Morgan) and Taungurong through my paternal grandmother, Dorothy Kennedy (nee Hamilton) and Dja Dja Wurrung through my paternal grandfather, Clancy Charles.
Aboriginal people have been calling for a Treaty since invasion and I believe the timing is right now. I wish to nominate to be a member of the First People’s Assembly of Victoria because the Treaty process is important for Victoria and I would like to add my voice to the ongoing process. My sixty plus years living in conditions under policies and programs operating for Aboriginal Victorians as well as forty three years working in the Aboriginal Affairs workforce to bring about better policies, has qualified me for membership on the Assembly as I have both the lived experience and an understanding of contemporary issues.
I believe that the Treaty process must take into account Aboriginal communities for the next 7 generations. My aspirations for Treaty is that it will give all Victorians an understanding of Aboriginal issues and agreement with a compensatory package for Aboriginal people that will ensure the maintenance of culture, and long term sustainability of programs.
I am a proud Wotjobaluk man and my lineage is through the Coombs line from Ebenezer Mission. My Great Grandfather is Alfred Jackson Coombs. I was born in Balranald NSW and grew up with some of my cousins from the mission at Balranald. I have lived in Melbourne since 1968.
I believe I have the knowledge and experience to assist in developing the framework for Treaty. I believe that all traditional owner groups should be included in the treaty process. I am committed in representing the voices of the community. I will work hard to represent our people and will always put the needs of the community first. I look forward to representing you in Treaty.
I am a proud Bunurong Elder Woman.
My Apicail Ancestor was Nandergoroke/Elizabeth Maynard who was kidnapped from Point Nepean by sealers and taken to Bass Strait Islands.
I am chairperson of Bunurong Land Council. I am an active Bunurong community member and I support equity, transparency, community and identity.
As a Boon Wurrung woman, I am standing for election so we can provide a voice for the Victorian traditional owners and the wider Indigenous community.
I support the goals which were expressed in this year’s NAIDOC: Voice, Treaty, Truth.
I want to acknowledge and celebrate the role that the Victorian Clans and families have played in protecting, maintaining and celebrating our rich heritage. It has been their voice and struggle for the truth that has allowed us to achieve what we have today.
A genuine Treaty will only ever be achieved when our voice is heard and respected. A Treaty should be a compact with our ancestors to ensure that their voices are heard and their memories protected.
It is one of my great pleasures to see our young people achieve great outcomes, because of the work of the mothers and fathers and grandparents who made this struggle possible. The freedoms we now take for granted were the hard-fought victories of strong, persistent Black women and men – who never gave up.
I ask for your support so that we can acknowledge our traditional spirit of generosity and celebrate our shared history and the strength of this great Victorian community.
Tel: 03 9537 2222
|Muriel Pauline Bamblett
I am a proud Yorta Yorta, Dja Dja Wurrung woman with traditional ties also with the Bunnerong and Taungurung peoples and am proud to be standing for the Victorian First People’s Assembly.
I am currently the CEO of the Victorian Aboriginal Child Care Agency and have a long history of working with and for my people spanning almost 40 years and am on many National and State bodies representing and advocating for the interest of our children. Over the years I have been the recipient of many awards for my work with my community. Many of these accolades can be directly attributed to the Elders and loved ones that have guided me in my journey.
Since our community decided to pursue treaty in 2015, I have had a strong commitment to the Treaty process and believe my skills in policy formulation and advocacy would make me a strong candidate to deliver on the best outcomes for our children, my people and community. As a custodian of our traditions and culture I commit to protect our lands and resources, maintain our traditions and culture, drive investment for our future and protect and strengthen our Treaty and Inherent Rights.
My name is Aaron Mingara Clark a proud descendant from the Djab Wurrung people of the Gunditjmara nation, now living in Melbourne.
In 2018 I was humbled to present at the United Nations (UN) in New York advocating for Clan led Treaty making agreements. Two key principles of the UN is free, prior, informed consent and self-determination. Participation in a Treaty, offers a platform to build and create change in our community, while asserting our Sovereignty.
My children’s family’s links are throughout NSW and W.A, and I have lived and worked across QLD and the NT, consequently I understand the importance of Treaty reflecting the diversity of our community here. A Treaty will affect all of our TO’s and non TO’s, and therefore it is critical we work through these complex relationships of connections with our land and country, to ensure everyone can find value in a Treaty.
Being engaged and understanding the process we will equip all us to combat the hurdles we will inevitably face along this journey. I will fight to ensure our mob continues to have a voice, and work to impact the design making process going forward via our own systems and decision making processes.
I am a Wurundjeri elder with 2 children and have worked in cultural heritage for over 35 years. I believes that treaty should be between the traditional owners and government. That the treaty process must in campus all traditional owner mobs and insure their voice in this process.
Giving our first peoples recognition of what was taken, what was done and what is need to rectify the dispossession face by the day by day hardship of Victorian Aboriginal people. Part of treaty is making the wrongs right and giving back a bit of what was taken culturally the right to country, fishing, hunting, education, health, gathering resources and lore with out breaking the law.
|Linda May Bamblett
I am a proud Bangerang woman and am committed to ensuring that Aboriginal peoples have a voice in determining their future. As a mother and grandmother I want to ensure that the future generations have greater opportunities for advance and the their right as Aboriginal Australian will be upheld.
I believe that Treaty will afford our mob a greater voice and that “self determination” will be more than a catch cry, government commitment but a reality and I believe that Treaty is the most appropriate vehicle for this to become reality.
I am proud Yorta Yorta woman, but I live in the Northern Metropolitan area of Melbourne. I have 2 sons and 4 grandchildren therefore I would like to nominate myself for the Assembly as I did sit on first Assembly and I feel I need to be involved for my son’s and grandchildren as they are my future, and it is also time for change for their future.
I also work for the VAHS as Bringing them Home worker, I feel that Stolen Generations need a voice on this Assembly, and Treaty could push for Redress for them before they are all gone. All for Treaty!
Treaty Wow! Something I didn’t think I would see in my lifetime, but what a great opportunity to listen to our mobs, to have the opportunity to speak on behalf of our mobs. It is a great opportunity to be able to teach others and acknowledge the wrongs of the past.
I see treaty as a great opportunity to educate our young and empower our mob. It’s an opportunity to ensure our elders are cared for, our stolen gen mobs are heard and cared for.
Treaty, it’s our Time.
|Trevor John Gallagher
I am a proud sixty six year old Gunditjmara man from Western Victoria the Matriarch of my Family is Frances Gallagher one of the oldest living Gunditjmara woman alive today.
I am the father of four kids and grandfather of ten grandchildren and one great grand child. I live out at Wallan with my wife Amber and my latest two children.
The Treaty process is a long time coming and I would like to play a part in bringing it to fruition. I feel as a candidate I could make a difference especially around the areas of educating our young kids in their own culture and making sure that they grow up proud of who they are, this is what I have been doing for the last 15 years of my working life
I am a Proud Yorta Yorta man, and I am from the Cooper, Briggs and Peters clans. I grew up on Yorta Yorta country, in Mooroopna and Shepparton area with parts of my childhood growing up on Cummergunja with my great grandmother. I believe this is a great opportunity to finally lead how business for our people should be done and not be under the dictatorship of the commonwealth who continues to not acknowledge our sovereign rights as the First Peoples’ of this country.
I feel that we have been waiting a long time for this to happen for our people, and that it is important we secure this for the future of our children and to make sure that our cultural history, our true stories and genealogy is not forgotten. This is also a great opportunity to create a better future for our next generations and to make sure we are not the forgotten people of our own country.
Liz Allen has withdrawn as a candidate in these elections. As the withdrawal occurred after the ballot draw and printing of election materials, her name will remain on the ballot.
I am a Proud Gunditjmara woman from Lake Condah Western Victoria living in Melbourne, having worked in community controlled sector for most of my life in the heart of Fitzroy at VAHS and the Park with the strongest and bravest Aboriginal people; my Mother and Grandmother, as well as other family and community members who called the park their home had a huge and profoundaffect on me and always influence my thinking and decision making.
Being on the Assembly is about doing right by our community, ensure there is equity, being honest fair and open transparent and accountable to community is crucial to the role of the Assembly.
I am a proud Yorta Yorta, Gunditjmarra, and Wurundjeri man. I Have lived in Melbourne for majority of my life.
I am very passionate about the Health and wellbeing of the first nations people within the communities statewide. I Have been apart of the sad times and struggles which is why I feel being a member of the First Peoples Assembly will ensure good times for the next generation follow.
I have always been involved and apart of Aboriginal affairs within Victoria and will continue my involvement to make sure I have left a legacy no matter how small. Being apart of the Assembly will be a stepping stone for my knowledge to be passed on to the next generation.
I see Treaty as a way for our voices to be heard so that all Australians can benefit of the true history and 60,000 plus years of stories that are being told and taught. It will be a way for all non-indigenous people to understand the strong history before settlement.
Hello to all you Mob. My name is Shane Clarke I am a proud Bunurong Man. My family are originally from Balranald NSW, I am a direct decedent from Louisa Briggs one of the five apical ancestors of the Bunurong.
I currently work for my community as a Senior Culture Heritage Representative with the Bunurong Land Council Aboriginal Corporation; However, I have always walked as a proud Aboriginal Man and embraced all Aboriginal people as my Brothers and Sisters.
I have battled through a lot of hardship in my life because I was born black in my own country. I fully understand our struggles to gain some sort social justice for our Mobs.
I’ve worked in Koorie organisations and communities from north west to south west of Victoria. Also travelled from Queensland and New South Wales in various roles including truck driving, earth moving, youth justice, Elders groups,police liaison, community transport, yellow cabs, chub security, on country land care, dance groups and culture heritage management.
My focus issues are as a Treaty candidate are:
I Dale Wandin of Wurundjeri/Woi-wurrung mob am a traditional owner of Melbourne & surrounding areas. I come from a lineage of people that were instrumental in making things better for Victorian First Nations People. My ancestors include people such as William Barak, Simon Wonga, Joy Murphy Wandin & Di Kerr. It’s important to have a Traditional Owner represent his clan, land, community & ancestors.
A Traditional Owner of the Melbourne area should have a voice on the assembly in regards to the Melbourne area. I believe in Treaty. I believe it must be done correctly. The process is not something that has been given the right amount of time, however I believe that Treaty is required to move forward. It’s about making sure that the right thing starts to happen. My aspirations are to have Treaty are many. We can make our communities better. We can start negotiating better educational programs in schools to start changing the negative influences the current educational system that reflect poorly against First Nations People. We can start making change & start bringing back structures & protocols within our culture. Treaty is a ball of clay for me. I want to make it work.
|Download PDF version here|
|Stephen J Walsh
I stand as a candidate for the first peoples assembly Victoria as a Taungurung man and elder, I have been a member for over 5 years of Taungurung Council and served as Director and deputy chair for over 4 years of my time there. I have committed to support Taungurung communitys amplical ansestory family of the Hamilton family.
My involvement in the Victorian treaty process in Victoria has been to attend many of the discussions and workshops as a traditional owner as we ll as being a representative of my organisations interest.
As a elder of the Taungurung council I have also good relationships with many other traditional owner groups including our neighbors being Yorta Yorta, Gunai/Kurnai, Wurundjeri and Dja Dja Wurrung. I have also had the opportunity to be involved in the Kulin Nations Tanderrum 2017 as an elder of Taungurung.
I have have had an opportunity to be involved in many different discussions
I am an Elder of the Wollithiga Clan, the traditional owners of our country. I follow the ancestral line from Kitty Atkinson, a Wollithiga woman.
Protection with a treaty will allow the future of younger generations to continue with honour and pride in caring for their traditional Lands.
Yorta Yorta women from my father Gordon Bamblett is the son of the late Lesley Bamblett son of Lulla Morgan and Alf Bamblett. I wish to be a member of treaty to be a connection and a communicator for my people from my elders, my elder generations and my generation to those of my sons and ones yet to come to be heard and represented.
I see treaty as a stepping stone of the past 230 years to the present pain my people have endured to walk together as one nation as a state towards healing, understanding and agreement of common grounds.
I aspire to see this further close the gap for our people to start a better healing and living from now on to the future of breaking the cycle from our people, indigenous communities from the inside to the outer nation as one.
I am a very proud Yorta Yorta man, my tribe has a history of ansestors and elders who fought for rights and treatment for aboriginal people in the early 1900s, so I would like to continue their legacy in a modern perspective. I wish to be a member of the First Peoples because we need representatives that can communicate with our people and provide the voice which reflects local issues.
I believe I have a detailed understanding of what our tribe requires. I firmly believe treaty is every bodies business. A specific treaty agreement with our local council and chamber of commerce, a Victorian Treaty Agreement ultimately a National Treaty which addresses constitutional recognition and focuses on rewriting our Australian history from an Aboriginal perspective.
I wish to be a member of the First Peoples Assembly of Victoria, because I want to see positive changes for all of our people. I believe treaty will be the start of a lot of positive change for us and I want to be apart of the conversation.
Our selfless elders fought for us to be equal and we now have a chance to nagioate with Government to give our people a voice. I wish to be a voice for the younger generations and to stand respectfully with our past and present elders.
As a Taungurung gulinj, I am passionate about the possibilities of what self-determination can achieve for us. I believe that my experience and knowledge working within the community and with various agencies, would enable me to make a meaningful contribution in the assembly.
I believe that in being a member of the assembly, it is critical to engage with our communities continually throughout this process. In order for our people to be able to negotiate successful treaties, we need a comprehensive treaty framework, a fair treaty authority and adequate self-determination fund.
I want to be part of the process that helps our people to be able to negotiate a treaty on a fair playing ground.
I am a descendant of the Dhulanyagen Ulupna clan, Yorta Yorta people. My grandparents are Selwyn and Geraldine Briggs AO (nee Clements), my mother Frances Mathyssen (nee Briggs). My family has a strong and long-standing commitment to Aboriginal affairs. I am a Senior Atlantic Fellow for Social Equity and Executive Director, Koorie Women Mean Business
I would welcome the opportunity to engage around the provisions and interpretations of the Act developed as part of the Treaty. I believe a Treaty could strengthen and uphold the strong fundamentals of the tide of history which effects our planning for growth as a clan, community and through partnerships. It draws on my key strengths: community engagement, policy writing and negotiation experiences.
I have an extensive advocacy background working in Indigenous, legal, corporate and women’s sectors. I have represented Australian Indigenous Women at the United Nations and undertaken four international UN Fellowships
My broad views on Treaty are:
Tel: 03 9670 3460
I am from the Kalithiban of the Bangerang Nation which is located within the Goulburn Valley region, my mother was Esmeralda Bamblett nee Morgan who was born on Cummeragunja Reserve she was the great granddaughter of Bagot Morgan who was a resident of Maloga and Cummeragunja and noted as Bangerang tradional owner from the Goulburn Valley area.
I wish to be a member of the First People’s Assembly of Victoria I believe that I can contribute positively to the discussion which will advance the Treaty process for the whole of the Victorian Aboriginal community. I am very passionate and committed to advocating and working for advancement of Aboriginal Affairs at local, statewide and National levels. I have been actively involved for the last four decades enabling me to bring this experience and knowledge required in the work of advancing the Treaty process.
Treaties will provide Aboriginal people of Victoria with legitimate recognition as First Nations people to negotiate sustainable funding agreements, protection of heritage and cultural rights which ensures that our future generations wii not have to be beggers within in their own Sovereign lands.
|Download PDF version here|
My name is Brendan Kennedy of the Tati Tati Wadi Wadi traditional owners, I am from the Murray River Nations in North West Victoria and I am standing for the North West Region, I aim to strive to achieve the best possible benefits for Victorian Traditional owners and aboriginal Victorians.
My name is Jacinta Chaplin I was born and raised in the Swan Hill, Nyah West area.
As a people we have come to a point in this modern world, Treaty Is the next step to be taken
Instead of proving our connection we demanded the respect for our ancestor who are now in the dreaming, the respect of our culture and of our responsibility to protect the lore of the lands.
Our ancestors have guided us to where we are today. We walk in the footsteps they have left for us. Therefore, the tracks we are creating now are the pathways and possibilities for the generations to come, to be the next leaders, to keep our dreaming alive and our culture strong.
Our country is our heart, our totems are our spirt and our souls are combined with the animals, the plants, the waters and the lands.
As a people we are responsible for protecting our own and each other’s heart, sprit and souls.
We are ready, to leave our footprints together.
My name is Dale McDonald I am a sovereign man of the Mukjarawaint/Djap Wurrung/Jardwadjali/Gunditjmara and Gunai Kurnai nations.
I have lived in the Daylesford region on Dja Dja Wurrung country for the past 35 years. During this time I have advocated for and protected the land, environment and waterways and wellbeing of people. Whilst maintaining a strong connection to my traditional countries.
I am a father, grandfather, uncle, son and many more and come from strong blood lines of staunch leaders. My great grandfathers Ebenezer Lovett and John Connelly along with my great grandmother Susannah McDonald have passed down the cultural knowledge and stories through my family lines that are integral to my cultural heritage and spirituality as a first nations person.
I have broad knowledge of culture, heritage, religious beliefs, lore and spirituality through Bunjil our creator spirit. I believe it is important for this knowledge to be shared. It is fundamental that all grounded grassroots voices are heard and are a part of the treaty process, this has motivated me to stand as a candidate.
I’m a proud Mutthi Mutthi / Wamba Wamba man I am a father and Grandfather
My passion for mob and justice was instilled in me by Grandparents Alfred Kelly (Wamba Wamba) Alice Kelly (Mutthi Mutthi 1988 National Aboriginal Person of the year)
I was honoured to attend the National Dialogue at Uluru as an elected Victorian Community member.
I have spoken at the African Union of Nations in Ethiopia highlighting the continual significant imbalance between Aboriginal rights and obligations and Non Aboriginal Rights and obligations and the continual impacts of past government policy and practices.
I stand on the values of Integrity and Human Rights and have sound knowledge of the United Nations Declaration of Indigenous People Rights (UNDRIP)
Treaty is about recognising OUR sovereignty and our ability to self sustained services on country in accordance with Aboriginal Lore.
I believe in the ability for economic self determination via the deadly work done before by our elders who drafted PAY the RENT and how this concept is still relevant as part of and beyond Treaty.
Treaty is about us mob taking back the reigns.
You cannot have peace without justice, Treaty and pay the rent is a step towards justice.
My name is Nick Stewart, I am a proud Wamba Wamba and Dhudhuroa man,
My family comes Wamba Country around Swan Hill and Lake Boga I grew up on country, and now live on Dja Dja Wurrung Country in Bendigo,
Treaty to me is the biggist opportunity Victorian Aboriginal people have had in a vary long time,
I want us as Victorian Aboriginal people to show all of Australia our passion and intelligence in a strong legally binding document that asserts all of our rights, history and also the future of our people and Nations.
|Raylene Ivy Harradine
I am a proud Latje Latje and Wotjabuluk woman, My family connection is to the Northwest and Wimmera area of Victoria. I was born in Dimboola and then moved several times until finally settling in Bendigo. I nominated for the Assembly as I believe that we as a Nation are in a position to progress self determination.
I have grown up with values of family and community, which is reflective of the work that I have undertaken particularly in leading guardianship for children in our care where I am passionate in being in a position to be a decision maker in working with children and families for better outcomes, I am a recipient of a Public Service medal ,2017 for work with communities in Loddon Mallee.
I am at a point in my life and have the maturity and confidence to stand alongside my peers as a united voice on what we are attempting to achieve for the future of our people. I see the Assembly as the next steps toward recognition as the First peoples and would be honored to be elected so that we could progress treaty within Australia in unity with all Australians.
I am a proud Wemba Wemba/Wotjibolik/Wiradjuri women. I have a strong voice for community, we need to make sure they are strongly included in the negotiation processes, making sure we can leave a legacy, to do all our ancestors proud, they have paved the way for us. I have hope for the future of our country, our children are our future leaders, we need to pave the way for stronger beginnings for them.
I hope to be the right voice for community, to lead the way for our mob to have pride in cultural identity, connection to country and be able to heal. Our ancestors, our mothers, our grandmothers never had this opportunity, so we need to do this for them. I want our mobs to come together and know they are being heard, I feel I can be that voice.
|Annabelle May Moore
My name is Annebelle Moore everyone calls me Annie and that is my preferred name. I come from one of five groups in the Western District of Victoria.
I was one of 11 children that was forcefully removed. I grew up not really knowing my mob and didn’t come back to country until my late 30s I am proud to be a Wotjobaluk woman and a traditional owner.
I have kids and grandkids so for me Treaty is about closure for me and a future for the younger generation.
Treaty should be about closing gaps in a system that is flawed, health, housing, education and equality some of the a are huge issues that communities still face and that isn’t even scratching the surface. We live in a first world country with archaic and patriarchal westernised traditions, instead of harmony, equality lore and law The struggle is real and it won’t end until we make a stand as a united voice to move forward and embrace change for a better future.
I live in central Victoria and I am a descendant of the Dja Dja Wurrung people. If elected to the First Peoples’ Assembly, I will ensure a strong voice on advocacy for the needs of all people upon treaty matters in the north western electoral region. I believe that Treaty can be something for everyone to share in.
As a Traditional Owner our leadership needs to ensure that everyone benefits from the opportunities that Treaty could provide.
Our Ancestors never had the respect of the colonial powers of the day, I would be honoured to represent you at this Assembly, so our Ancestors voice
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Proud GunaiKurnai women who has grown up with strong connections, to culture & community. Have witness firsthand my grandparents & great grandparents advocate for a better future and access to services for my mob. I have been proudly employed at Lakes Entrance Aboriginal Health Association for more than 8 years aiming to improve the health & wellbeing of our mob and feel that I am in the perfect position, have the skills to have a voice on this table. I feel I am community connected & minded and have the expertise and respect to hear their voice.
My name is Electra Greene, I am Gunai/Kurnai, along with Munaro DNA tries, I’m wanting to became a member of Assembly, for my love of the land and the eviroment and waters of the South Gippsland Region, I like to fight the fight thats fair and respectful of our people of the Kurnai/Gunai Area.
My nomination to be elected onto the inaugural Treaty Assembly Victoria comes with a lot of thought. I believe I will be able to bring many aspects of Aboriginal affairs to the treaty table and play my part in the further negotiations of what a treaty can transform into in a progressive way.
I have worked in various areas of Aboriginal affairs but more currently have been heavily involved in the justice area which comes with my role at Kurnai Legal Practice being the Director of Liaison .
I am a Kurnai man on my fathers side from Gippsland with traditional ties also to Gunditjmara country.
On my mothers side I come from Taungurung/Yorta Yorta/Bangerang ancestry.
I have been active member in my community from the start, following in my families foot steps.
My approach ( if elected ) to this whole treaty process is to be open minded and work towards improving the lives of my community in areas such as better health, housing, employment, education and also to improve better justice related outcomes for Aboriginal people who find themselves in the justice system.
There is a lot of work to be started on and to continue.
As an indigenous Australian man, I feel very happy about Victoria having a Treaty.
As traditional owners of this country, we need to be heard, valued and most importantly, respected for who we are, what we do, where we’ve and the path we’re taking to secure our future, in keeping our strong culture, language and traditions alive.
Treaty will give us the power to have more say over our Cultural Heritage and how we would oversee and manage it all.
I believe for us as Indigenous peoples of this country, we need to firstly right all past wrongs, acknowledge that we have always been here, in order to be able to move forward with the wider community in a very positive way whilst focusing on a whole range of issues that can benefit every indigenous person in this country, delivered for, and by our own commitments.
Treaty should give us the tools to achieve self-determination without prejudice.
We need to be on an equal par with the wider community and take full control of our own destiny moving forward with Treaty. I want our people to be well and
My name is Rodney Harrison, I am a 36 year old Gunnai/Kurnai man, with ties to Manaro, Gundijimarra and Yorta Yorta & Wiradjuri tribes.
I have lived and grew up in and around Bairnsdale all most of my life.
I Started Youth work 2014 with Gippsland East Gippsland Aboriginal Co-operative (GEGAC), working at a youth Hostel looking after the homeless youth and trying to get them into Housing. 2016 I moved from working with homeless kids to Mentoring the Aboriginal kids within our community. In 2107,outside of my work role. Myself and the community came together and we created BRUS (Bairnsdale Regional Ulimited Sports). A sports club, that will help push our youth to what ever sport they are into.
BRUS was formed to support access to sporting activities and physical activity for people of all ages and all abilities in the Aboriginal community. It was formed in response to a need for improved health and wellbeing for Aboriginal people, through participation in sport. Although BRUS is supportive of all abilities, the organisation is keen to assist talented players to advance their levels of participation in sporting competitions locally and inter-state. BRUS aims to work inclusively towards improving the health
|Alice Ann Pepper
My Name is Alice Pepper I am a Proud Gunnai, Gunditjmar, Yorta Yorta, Mutti Mutti & Arunte Woman I identify and mention all my clans and am proud of my bloodline connections Because of past policies and the trauma caused to my Ancestors and elders it has taken me a lifetime to learn my connections to my country.
I hope our future generations do not have to struggle to find there connections, stories, languages and clans. I want to stand as a candidate to bring my people together to have a voice, to make change to be the decision makers to restore our cultural governance that we have a rigt to do as sovereign people the time is now to stand up and be not just counted but heard.!!
Hi I’m Kaylene, I am a proud GunaiKurnai woman. I am the eldest daughter of Sandra Neilson and the Granddaughter of Cora Green. I grew up in Stratford and completed my schooling in Sale, leaving at 18 to complete my Bachelor of Management degree. I have spent majority of my adult life in Melbourne and the last two years at Uluru. I currently live in Eagle Point with my husband and two daughters.
My expertise varies from Aboriginal employment, education programs, human resources, management, governance, legislation and health and fitness. I have worked in private, corporate, government and community organisations.
I have strong communication skills, stakeholder engagement and negotiation skills and I am confident in speaking with government.
Coming back home to live on country feels amazing. Being with my family has strengthened my commitment to do the best I can for our future generations. I want to use my skills and knowledge to help voice what this community wants for the future. I don’t have all of the answers but I can help to make sure our voice is heard during this Treaty process. Let’s stand strong together to represent our people.
My name is Jedda Patten, I am a Krowotholoong-Gunai woman from East Gippsland, Victoria. I come from a strong bloodline of political leaders. My leadership, community engagement and political representation has given me the direction of implementing knowledge of our Treaty to be at the core of cultural protocol.
My passion is Self-Determination for our Clans/Communities. My demonstration to my clan, state and national approach is to fulfil our own gap and create our Treaty for the future of our people. First peoples are to be at the front of decision making processes. It is our duty to culturally engage with our clans. I have represented Treaty to the prime minister and now I seek the opportunity for myself to lead and direct a sacred movement for our people. Where I am from I am known as the voice leader of the youth.
Treaty to me is an empowerment act to our sovereign rights, our Lore and future wellbeing of our generational cultural aspects. Clan rights, state government processes and my parliamentary response is important for me standing up for a process in our way will follow through with critical cultural guidance.
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|John Maxwell Lovett
Gunditjmirring/Gunditjmarra. Lovett family going back to 1800’s. Fought for Native Title in 1990’s was a member of ATSiC regional council of Victoria.
My view’s on treaty is that there is opportunity for Aboriginal recognition in regards to country by Government and highlightings traditional ownership.
I am a Gunditjmara/Yorta Yorta woman coming from a long line of strong women, namely my grandmothers Aunty Euphemia Day (nee Lovett) and Aunty Francis Matthysen (nee Briggs). I was born on Yorta Yorta Country and grew up in and continue to live on Gunditjmara Country. The Assembly has a massive responsibility to our communities and I believe I have relevant skills to ensure our mobs interests are heard and reflected in the proposed Framework.
We have endured many processes since colonization but one thing as always been steadfast and that is our sovereignty has never been ceded. Treaties provide an opportunity to formally recognize this fact unlike any other process we have entered into which is why treaties are unique.
My name is Sissy Austin, a sovereign woman of clans Peek Woorroong, Keerray Woorroong and Djap Wurrung of the Gunditjmara Nation. I have inherited strength from women who walked and cared for country/ community before me, my grandmother Eileen Austin and Great Grandmother Doris Clarke.
I exist as a young woman to listen, learn and grow, but to also use voice when needed. The need for grassroots knowledge and insight and the need for generational representation are two of my motivating factors in deciding to stand as a candidate for the election.
My aspirations for treaty/treaties are for no mob to be left behind and for the next phase of treaty to listen deeply to and be driven by the already existing cultural knowledge, values and beliefs across all clan groups within the State Governments boundaries of Victoria. My informed decision to stand as a candidate does not indicate my acceptance towards the treaty process thus far, it indicates my fear of continued in-action of my aspirations listed above.
May the grassroots voices be heard, the past and current truths be told, the power dynamics shift and our mob not just survive, but thrive in and on our land.
This is exciting times for my people across the state, I have nothing but hope around this Treaty business because it is the first time we have had the opportunity to make change and it is well over due. Governments now have an obligation to continue this discussion and take it seriously, we have to position ourselves to make history in this country!
Our people are owed and deserve this opportunity, #TreatyNow#ItsTime
As a proud Koori woman descendant from the Barapa Barapa, Yorta Yorta, Mutthi Mutthi and Taungurung Peoples I am committed to seeing the advancement of our people.
I come from a long line of proud black men and women who stood up and worked tirelessly to raise the voices of our mob, and having grown up connected to country, culture and family I know the value and importance of giving back to community.
Along with this I have worked for both Federal and Local government and completed a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Politics & Policy and Sociology at Deakin University. This means that I am well aware of how Aboriginal communities are always at the mercy of government policy and just how important it is for us to have a seat at the table to ensure that we see the best possible outcome for our communities.
Like all other Aboriginal People I have long heard the call for treaty. The time for self-determination is now. I will work to ensure that the government of Victoria is held to account and that framework for treaty is as strong and fair as possible allowing Victorian Aboriginal People justice at last.
Hi, I’m a 52 year old Gunditjmara woman with over 30 years’ experience working in Aboriginal Affairs. I am running for the First Peoples Assembly because I believe in the treaty process and what it can bring to our communities. I have experience in negotiations and policy writing having worked in both state and federal governments and community organisations. I was born and live in the southwest and learnt our history from listening to my elders, walking my country and working with our community organisations throughout the region. I believe every community should be heard and have a say in what they want in the treaty process.
A treaty to me means first strengthening our relationship and connection to the land, one that has been unbroken for thousands of years. It is also an opportunity to build a real framework that breaks the cycle of welfare and poverty by opening up the potential for us to develop partnerships and negotiations which are beneficial to our people. A treaty can be a strong foundation for our people from which to create real change, not just for our generation but for the many more to come. So let’s get started.
My name is Jordan Edwards I am a proud Keerraywurrung, Waddawurrung and Aranda man born and raised on Waddawurrung country in Geelong, with strong ties to Framlingham. I am passionate about the community and making sure that our voices are represented fairly in everything that we do.
In 2016 I was awarded Victorian Mr. NAIDOC for my dedication to the community. I have also been awarded young achiever for Geelong in both 2016 and 2019.
I know I would be a great person for this assembly because I bring a youth voice and perspective, I have also been involved with the treaty process from the first meeting held at the MCG. My aspirations for treaty are for our people and culture to be uplifted and embedded in all aspects of socity.
I hope to see my grandchildren benefiting from what we create here together.
I am a young and proud Gunditjmara, Wemba Wemba, Barapa Barapa woman. I grew up in Deniliquin, Wemba Wemba country, until I was 13 where I moved to Geelong, continued my high schooling and later graduated VCE in 2015. In 2016 I moved to Canberra and studied a Bachelor of Science in Psychology at the University of Canberra. With the degree I hope to one day become a Forensic Psychologist and further assist our people to express their mental health in a more positive and healthy way. Currently, I live in Hamilton where I help organise events as well as volunteer to assist with events.
The reason I wish to become a member of the First Peoples’ Assembly of Victoria is to represent my community and also to be a voice for young Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Victoria. I find the treaty is a positive step forward and is long overdue. The treaty process will be most important and having a voice in the process will benefit our people greatly. Although there may be challenges ahead, I will continue to be a strong voice for the community.
My name is Marcus Clarke. I’m honoured and humbled to announce my candidacy for the First Peoples’ Assembly of Victoria.
I am the son of Lenny Clarke, grandson of Henry Banjo Clarke and Audrey Couzens. I am of the Gunditjmara-Kirrae Whurrong people. I’m born, bred and reside in Warrnambool. I’m married to Ellissa, we have 2 children, Lincoln and Remy.
For us this is unchartered, game changing territory. It is about securing a positive future for our people now and our future generations. This is principally what motivates me to stand for election.
I am a realist to understand this won’t be an easy road but know this! If you vote for me you will get someone who will settle in quickly without fanfare who has over 17 years active involvement in Aboriginal Affairs ranging from governance experience at national, state and local level and community service delivery at CEO level principally in health and social welfare. I also have a strong background in investigations and Fisheries Management. Above all, know that I am an independent thinker who will not refrain from expressing doubts and judgments or disagreeing with the consensus, if it’s the right thing to do.
|Trevor (Reg) Abrahams
I am an Aboriginal man, descendant of the Gunditjamara people, located in South Western Victoria. I also have other ties to other Victorian blood lines, in Framlingham Settlement where my mother Rita Clarke/Abrahams was born 1932 in-between the fork of a large fallen gum tree and was brought up by my Grandmother Alice Maude Clarke who was born on the Cumeragunja mission NSW 1909 and married my Grandfather Herbert Theodore Winter Clark born in Portland District Hospital 1905. My Grandmothers mother Mary Maude Edwards was also born on Cumeragunja 1889 and stems back to the Briggs family that are Bunnerong, part of the Melbourne mob that have ties back to Tasmania, Van Demons land, Chief Mallangeta.
Treaty to me is about rectifying the past injustices for my ancestors and all other Aboriginal peoples living in Victoria. I want to be part of the conversation and to help the assembly make decisions thst support our cultural structures in contemporary landscape.
The South West have survived the arrival, invasion and colonisation by the British. We have survived the massacres, murders and battles. We survived the diseases, despair and denial. It’s time to resolve the dehumanisation, institutionalisation and ignorance.
|Michael (Mookeye) Bell
Hi, my name is Michael Bell and I’m a Gunditjmara Man who lives on Gunditjmara Country in Heywood. My connection to country is through my mother Laura Lovett – Bell. I nominated to be a candidate for the First Peoples Assembly as a person with experience in working for my community on a local, regional and state wide level.
The opportunities to create a framework that is representative of our nations,clans and people to consider on treaties is strong.
To be able to give my experience is what I have been doing for a couple of decades and will ensure a strong voice is at the table.
Aspiration for me is ensuring the Aboriginal Voice is where laws and strategies are approved in Victoria. To have dedicated seats in State Parliament will ensure the Aboriginal Voice is a part of future decision making.
Ngatanwaar nyoorra woorryn, howdy, I’m Aunty Julie, a proud Gunditjmara woman living on Wadawurrung country, a special place and connection for me. Having grown up with a strong connection to country and family has grounded me in culture, beliefs and values through generations of strong willed and proud people who advocated and fought for political and social change for our communities. I’ve worked in business, government, and community across employment, education, health and culture, and through further education I’ve completed Bachelor of Primary Education and Master of Indigenous Language Education. Alongside my life experiences, integrity and cultural responsibilities I continue to work and advocate for our mob.
I personally see Treaty being change, a cultural revolution, nationhood of Aboriginal voice and many opportunities. It is respect, acknowledgment, recognition, connection, cultural authority, protection of rights, justice, equality, cultural security, safety, diversity, caring for country, land reform, cultural preservation, well-being, lore, healing, changed mindset, continuum of culture, self-determination and much more. If elected I will be committed to the work and journey ahead of progressing the treaty movement with the voice of our mob from our South West region of Victoria and together we can make change in the right cultural way