IFD Speakers 2017

Story tellers for the Indigenous Focus Day 2017

John ‘Tadam’ Lockyer, Immediate past chairperson   IRCA

Tadam is from Ngarluma and Karriarra country between Roebourne and Port Hedland. His mother’s country is Nyul Nyul in the Dampier Peninsula. Tadam works at Pilbara and Kimberley Aboriginal Media (PAKAM) as Hub Network Manager. This involves supporting the regional RIBS network with radio broadcasting, training and maintenance. He previously worked as Interim Coordinator and Senior Broadcaster at Ngaarda Media in Roebourne WA, and as Radio Manager at Gumala Aboriginal Corporation for 9.5 years. Tadam is a strong advocate and champion for remote Indigenous broadcasting and media. He has regularly served as a Director on the Board of PAKAM since 2008.

Prof. Leonard Collard, School of Indigenous Studies, The University of Western Australia

Professor Len Collard is an Australian Research Council, Chief Investigator with the School of Indigenous Studies at the University of Western Australia. Len has a background in literature and communications and his research interests are in the area of Aboriginal Studies, including Nyungar interpretive histories and Nyungar theoretical and practical research models. Len has conducted research funded by the Australian Research Council, the National Trust of Western Australia, the Western Australian Catholic Schools and the Swan River Trust and many many other organisations. Professor Collard’s research has allowed the broadening of the understanding of the many unique characteristics of Australia’s Aboriginal people and has contributed enormously to improving the appreciation of Aboriginal culture and heritage of the Southwest of Australia. Len’s ground-breaking theoretical work has put Nyungar cultural research on the local, national and international stages. Finally, Len is a Whadjuk Nyungar elder and who is a respected Traditional Owner of the Perth Metropolitan area and surrounding lands, rivers, swamps ocean and its culture.

Christine Ross, Indigenous and Diversity Manager for the Aroona Alliance

Christine Ross is an Arrernte/Kaytetye desert woman who was born in Alice Springs, grew up in Darwin and moved to Perth in 2002. Christine has always maintained a high profile in the NT and WA and was an Inaugural Member of the Yilli Rreung Darwin ATSIC Regional Council in 1990 – 1993. She held numerous positions in education and media  and employment. Whilst she continues with her Consultancy work Christine is also employed part time as the Indigenous and Diversity Manager for the Aroona Alliance in Perth WA.



YOKAI – Stolen Generations Information Service, Wayne Bynder & James Morrison

Bringing Them Home WA

James Morrison (Jimbo), Chair Stolen Generations/ Bringing Them Home WA dedicated his life to truth, justice and healing for Stolen Generations survivors and their families.

Wayne Bynder is a long serving Indigenous Broadcaster and together they make up the successful radio team – Unna You Fullas. The Indigenous affairs come arts radio program about to make a return to the airwaves in Perth with syndication opportunities.

Stolen Generations WA (or Yokai) has recently launched YOKAI – Stolen Generations Information Service from their offices at 57 Murray Street Perth. It’s an on-line information and music service designed to provide updated news direct to members and the general public via the Yokai internet page at www.yokai.net.au.

The team will discuss their approach to setting up the service and the challenges faced. The technicalities of such a service being provided to a population scattered throughout Western Australia to members who are aging, have limited knowledge of technology and limited access or experience with the internet.



To Skype or not to Skype: Remoteness and the Internet

Barbara Bynder, Karda Designs, Kimberley

I am a Ballardong, Whadjuk Noongar living and working in Broome, Western Australia. I have a BA Arts, HDR Anthropology, Professional Certificate in Indigenous Research. I am an artist, researcher and educator. My passion is to inform the wider community about the richness and diversity of contemporary Aboriginal people, culture and heritage. We are all Aboriginal just doing it differently.

Remoteness is a factor impacting Digital Inclusion in many ways. This is my story and that of my community. I am concerned about the missed opportunities for my community because not everyone is connected, not everyone has access, not everyone has the knowledge and skill to use digital tools and Internet connectivity to improve their lives and be part of the digital future. There needs to be a critical mass of users, of people doing complex online and digital tasks and a constant renewal of opportunities if this “gap” is to be addressed. I will share some stories of issues we face “on-the-ground” and ask the forum to understand my issues, why I think it is important and consider if solutions I want, can be addressed.

nleashing the potentials that digital technology, inclusion and startup support can offer Australia’s most disadvantaged and disconnected communities.

Unleashing the potentials that digital technology, inclusion and startup support can offer Australia’s most disadvantaged and disconnected communities

Leigh Harris, ingeous studios, Cairns, QLD

Leigh is the creator of a Cairns based design studio producing product in cooperation with Indigenous community groups. He is a strong mentor for many indigenous photographers, designers and graphic artists and a technology consultant to projects throughout North Queensland’s Indigenous communities. Leigh provides publishing platforms and design solutions for mobile platforms and social media.

The next generation of IT Specialists need to include more Indigenous people where ever they lives. In Cairns, we are hosting an event, unleash.D, designed to inspire this generation. unleash.D will bring together Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and other disadvantaged and minority groups to discuss and unleash the potential that the digital economy and digital innovation can offer. unleash.D is a place to imagine the future, a place to learn from world-changing innovators, futurists, inspired thinkers and an interactive community of activators. Our strategy will contain a conference, master classes, deep conversations, pitch tables, performances, and other special events. It will discover the strategies and techniques for digital leadership and innovation for Australia’s most disadvantaged group.

Broadband access and its potential applications for a WA Remote Indigenous Media Organisation – PAKAM (Pilbara and Kimberley Aboriginal Media)

Neil Turner and Tadam Lockyer, PAKAM, WA

Neil has been the manager of Pilbara and Kimberley Aboriginal Media since 1996. Before that he worked on the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Lands for 11 years as Coordinator of Ernabella Video Television and Pitjantjatjara-Yankunytjatjara Media. He was author of the 1998 National Report on the Broadcasting for Remote Aboriginal Communities Scheme and worked on establishing the Indigenous Community Television and National Indigenous Television services.

John Lockyer, or Tadam, as he is more commonly known, worked with Gumala Radio in Tom Price for 8 years before moving to Roebourne to work with Ngaarda Media in 2015  and then joining PAKAM in 2016. John previously worked with a CDEP corporation in Port Hedland who were trying to establish Mulba Radio. John was offered a job with Gumala Radio. This allowed him to find out more about his Pilbara side of the family, as he had only previously known his Kimberley side, due to both parents having family there. John is an aspiring musician, or as he puts it, a ‘wannabe muso’, therefore he’s found that broadcasting is the next best thing to it.  In 2014, John became Chair of the Indigenous media peak body Indigenous Remote Communications Association.

We will share our experience trying to get the next generation of technology going, including NBN Skymuster installations carried out for remote radio studios, IP streaming of radio,  intra community Wi-Fi,  and potential networking of Remote Community Video Archive servers with WA State Library Storylines software. Although its under-the-hood for most people, it enables the potential of technology to be accessible to more people.

Adapting and using technology to create change and make connections

Nickeema Williams, Hitnet, Community Connector, Worrabinda, Qld.

Nickeema took on the role of liaising with communities to bring the My Place modules to life for Hitnet, in 2015. As an artist, designer and photographer living and working in Woorabinda, her creative talents are being well used to address the issues facing Indigenous people.   She’s been involved in exhibiting at the Cairns Indigenous Art Fair for the past few years.

As part of this year’s Cairns Indigenous Art Fair, Nickeema will be presenting a digital art installation about ‘family’.  This will explore the differences and similarities between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families in remote Woorabinda in Central Queensland where Nickeema now lives and works, and regional Cairns where Nickeema grew up.  Nickeema will talk about her project and how adapting and using technology such as the Hitnet digital hubs, has nurtured the community’s creativity through storytelling.  This project has enabled Indigenous people to have a voice from remote Australia, to create change and make connections.

Building apps to use and share digitally-stored cultural information

Dora Dallwitz supported by inyerPocket Software, Ara Irititja, SA

Through a video and demonstration supported by Warren Smith, the audience will hear about Dora’s work in the APY Lands where she is using existing  “Keeping Culture” database,  to upload  selected content into the AppBooks platform  and then give it back to community through apps everyone can have on their phones or tablets.




Life and times of a mobile phone

Jennifer McFarland, Community Development Worker, CAYLUS, NT

Jennifer has been working with remote Aboriginal communities to keep the wheels on their public Wi-Fi hotspots and computer rooms for 6 years.  This is a complex and ever-changing cyberscape, presenting ongoing challenges for remote Aboriginal communities.  Jennifer’s background incorporates anthropology, community development, and cross-cultural justice systems.

Mobile phones in Aboriginal communities have an exciting life, and are the device most often used to access the internet.  Mobile phone connectivity and data is both convenient and expensive, and has made some significant changes to the remote community social landscape.  Managing these changes is an ongoing challenge for remote Aboriginal communities.

Jennifer has been working with remote Aboriginal communities to keep the wheels on their public Wi-Fi hotspots and computer rooms for 6 years.  This is a complex and ever-changing cyberscape, presenting ongoing challenges for remote Aboriginal communities.  Jennifer’s background incorporates anthropology, community development, and cross-cultural justice systems.

Telecommunications and remote Indigenous communities – now and into the future

Kate Laffan, Department of Prime Minister and Cabinet, Canberra ACT

After moving to Canberra to complete her BA with Honours, majoring in linguistics, Kate joined the Commonwealth Department of Health in 2004 and later worked in the Department of the Senate. Kate moved to Indigenous Affairs shortly before the 2013 election. Now in the Broadcasting and Telecommunications team, Kate enjoys contributing to and implementing government policy, balanced with delivering programs that make a real difference in the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples.

Through the Indigenous Advancement Strategy, the Commonwealth is providing improved internet access in remote Indigenous communities. This is in addition to maintaining a network of over 500 payphones and WiFi phones in remote Indigenous communities across Australia. Kate will discuss what the Commonwealth is doing now, and plans for the future.

The Digital Gap: bringing online accessibility to the disadvantaged

Joanne Pellew, Ochre Worksforce Solutions, Perth WA

Joanne Pellew is an entrepreneur at heart. As a Noongar woman with experience gained from working in indigenous employment as well as the innate connection with her own people, Joanne is dedicated to bridging the gap between employers and indigenous workers. After developing Ochre Workforce Solutions and spearheading the iWork Jobsite, she has helped nearly 1000 indigenous people into work while building the largest database of indigenous workers in the country.

Access to digital services is crucial for many remote communities, however many outlets fail to be inclusive to the needs of disadvantaged people. Pellew will argue that to be truly digitally inclusive, the needs of remote communities must be brought to the forefront. When those who require the online services the most are ignored, the digital gap is reinforced.

How We Do it in Ranges: Wilurarra Creative Studio, Music, and Alanya

Wilurarra Creative – local Wilurarra Creative speakers, Warburton, WA

1000km from the nearest towns, Warburton Community (known as Ranges), on the Ngaanyatjarra Lands in WA, is Telstra’s most remote service area. Wilurarra Creative is the only public access internet in Warburton. The internet hub sits at the centre of a vibrant, community-driven arts program for young adults, which brings together the whole community. Staff and participants will talk about Wilurarra Creative Studio, some of the work we do and how we use and learn about computers and the internet.


The impact of social media on our family

Isiah Jones, InDigiMOB, Alparra, NT

Isiah will show a short video he made with his family about the impact of social media on their lives. There are great things and not-so-great things about Facebook, messaging and other social media in communities. This is his family’s story. Isiah is a digital mentor for his community, supported by the InDigiMOB Project.

Living and working in remote community- a Ngaanyatjarra perspective

Daisy O’Byrne, NG Media, Irrunytju, WA

Daisy O’Byrne is a Tjarurru woman from the Ngaanyatjarra Lands.  She is Minyma Chairperson of Ngaanyatjarra Media and a member of the IRCA Board. NG Media is a remote media company based in Irrunytju community situated on the tri-state border WA/SA/NT. NG Media services 14 communities on the Ngaanyatjarra Lands. For Daisy, the value of living and working for Ngaanyatjarra media is to support and help people connect to the Internet and each other.

My role at NG Media as Minyma chairperson is to support and help to meet my mob’s needs and help people develop their understanding of day-to-day duties in the organisation. I am fully aware of the frustration and lack of support remote people receive and how shut off from the rest of the world we feel, when we can’t access Internet or mobile signal. My past employment has given me the strength to work in a team to improve options for young people in a connected community, while valuing connection to country. My community can share our knowledge through storytelling to a wider audience if we develop the skills and knowledge to work with online and other media.

Online studies for mature Indigenous students: a struggle

Valda Shannon, Community Researcher, Charles Darwin University, NT

Valda Napurrula Shannon Wandaparri is a Walpiri/Warumungu woman who has been living and working in Jurnkurakurr (Tennant Creek). Valda’s focus is ‘Walking in confidence in two worlds’ embedding Indigenous culture within education, employment and processes to strengthen her community. Valda contributed significantly to the Indigenous Suicide Prevention Manual and has worked with the Whole of Community English Initiative.

Valda will draw from her experience as an external higher education student to demonstrate that digital literacy needs to be embedded into university programs to enable Indigenous students living in remote communities to succeed. Access to digital training and equipment for full-time working student is an equity issue for mature Indigenous people.  This issue is not considered enough by education providers and often leads to disengagement and exclusion from professional and educational advancement. These issues need to be addressed to contribute further on the political agenda to enhance digital readiness of remote communities in Australia.