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Christopher J O’Brien, National and New South Wales / ACT Leader.

Chris crop v2 - portrait Christopher is a Yorta Yorta Aboriginal man from ‘Country’ Cummeroogunja (aka Cummeragunja) located across the Murray River of New South Wales and Victoria – a ‘freshwater’ man.

Christopher has obtained a Certificate III: Aboriginal Health Worker, Aged and Disability Care and Community Services, Certificate IV: Frontline Management, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care Practice and Training and Assessment, and is a registered Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Practitioner and Justice of the Peace for NSW.

Christopher has resided within the Illawarra region for 17 years where he has worked in a number of key Aboriginal organisations and established affiliations with many Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal stakeholders. He recently commenced a new role working in GP Synergy’s Aboriginal Cultural Education Unit as the Cultural Educator for Lower Eastern NSW and ACT. Previously Christopher was employed with the Illawarra Aboriginal Medical Service for 11 years where he was an Aboriginal Health Practitioner before moving to the role of Health Services Team Manager for 8 years.

Christopher has a strong passion for Aboriginal health, especially in the areas of chronic disease management – diabetes, asthma and cancer; early childhood – immunisations and wellbeing developmental assessments; and Mental and Sexual Health.

Ann-Marie Mitchell, Queensland Leader.

Anne Marie Mitchell Photo cropped Ann-Marie was born and raised in Cunnamulla South West QLD and is a descendent of Kooma Tribe, totem Snake. She has been a Teacher Aide, Shop Assistant, Youth Worker and domestic worker at Cunnamulla Hospital. Ann-Marie first started her AHW certificate when she was living in Ipswich in 1999 and completed the Primary Health Care Certificate in 2003. She is now working towards completing her Practitioner qualification.

Currently Ann-Marie works as a AHW worker in the field of Sexual Health, School Education Programs such as Oral Health, Hygiene and Hearing Health Programs and she also does blood collection (pathology).  Ann-Marie also travels providing Outreach Services to other communities within Paroo Bullo Shire Council. She has worked at Cunnamulla Aboriginal Corporation for Health (CACH) since August 2002.

Rrapa Dhurrkay, Northern Territory Leader.

Rrapa crop v4 - portrait Rrapa is from Galiwinku Island, North East Arnhem Land. Her tribe is Wangurri and she speaks Yolngu Matha. Rrapa has been an Aboriginal Health Worker/Practitioner for 18 years.

From 1998 to 2004 Rrapa worked as an Aboriginal Health Worker at Galiwinku, Elcho Island. In 2004 and 2005 she worked for the Menzies School of Health Research on the ABCD (Audit and Best Practice for Chronic Disease) Study. Since 2006 she has worked at Galawinku Elcho Island as an Aboriginal Health Practitioner where she is the team leader for Emergency. Rrapa also has qualifications in advanced life support and maternity emergency care.

Rrapa has studied at the Batchelor Institute in the NT. She has completed a Certificate III and IV in Primary Healthcare and a Diploma, Advanced Diploma and Bachelor’s Degree in Primary Healthcare. In 2015 she completed a Diploma of Management.

Jerome Ah-Kit Burgoyne, South Australia Leader.

Jerome crop v2 - portrait Jerome is from Port Lincoln and works at Port Lincoln Aboriginal Health Service. He commenced a two-year traineeship immediately after leaving school helping with health assessments in the clinic and he was also involved in a school screening program monitoring blood sugar levels, body mass index and hearing.

Jerome has completed Certificate IV studies in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care. Since completing his traineeship 18 months ago he has been working full time at Port Lincoln Aboriginal Health Service as an Aboriginal Health Worker.

Jerome enjoys sport, in particular football and basketball, and also has an interest in gardening.

James Peterson, Victoria Leader.

James crop v2 - portrait James is from Brewarrinna in NSW. He works at Mallee District Aboriginal Services where he has been employed for 15 years across a number of roles including Health Transport Officer, Regional Eye Health Coordinator and in an allied health position assisting with palliative care.

His current position, where he has worked for the past five years, is in Aboriginal Health Promotion and Chronic Care where he works in eye and oral health with a focus on diabetes. James has completed Certificate III and IV training and is now an Aboriginal Health Practitioner.

James has previously worked in many roles including forklift driver, furniture making and landscaping.