Board of Directors
Wunan is governed by a Board consisting of:
The affairs of Wunan shall be managed exclusively by a board of directors (Board) comprising:
a. that number of Aboriginal Persons, being not less than five (5) but not more than six (6) (as determined by the Board) who reside in the East Kimberley (East Kimberley Community Members);
b. one (1) person who has commercial expertise in the areas of commerce and investments, finance, risk and compliance and governance (Independent Director); and
c. that number of persons, being not less than one (1) but not more than three (3) (as determined by the Board) (General Board Members).
Importantly, Board members are appointed primarily on the basis of experience and skill, rather than on representative or political grounds. The standard period of office for Board members is 3 years.
Mr Ian Trust
Chairman and Executive Director
Chairman since 2008, Executive Director since 2004
- Director, Indigenous Business Australia (IBA)
- Director, Indigenous Land Corporation (ILC)
- Director, Aarnja Board, West Kimberley
- Board Member, Kimberley College of TAFE
- Formerly Founding Chairman, Wunan Foundation (1997-2003)
- Formerly ATSIC Commissioner (Kimberley)
- Formerly Chairman, Wunan ATSIC Regional Council
A local Gija man from Wuggubun Community, Ian speaks English and Kriol (of the English Creole Language family).
Ian has a strong and coherent vision of a better future for Aboriginal people in the East Kimberley — a future beyond welfare and government dependency.
Ian has worked tirelessly to progress this vision through such initiatives as the ATSIC Regional Council’s “future building” strategy (1996), the East Kimberley Aboriginal Achievement Awards, reforms in the Aboriginal Housing and Infrastructure sector, and as Executive Director of Wunan Foundation.
Mr Tom Birch
Director since 2002
- Formerly Wunan Chairman 2002-2007
- Deputy Chairman, Kimberley Land Council (KLC)
- Director, Kimberley Language Resource Centre (KLRC)
- Director, Kimberley Aboriginal Law and Culture Centre (KALACC)
- Formerly Director, Wunan ATSIC Regional Council
A traditional owner of Balangara Native Title (Wyndham area), Tom speaks English and Kriol (of the English Creole Language family).
Tom sees poor educational and employment outcomes are the key issues impacting Aboriginal people in the East Kimberley. These are underpinned by a lack of parental responsibility for children and a breakdown of family structures. Toms works through the Wunan Board to encourage personal responsibility, educational solutions and reward for effort.
Tom worked for many years in the Kimberley pastoral industry before taking up various community Leadership roles. He focused particularly on restoring Native Title and improving the economic future of Kimberley Aboriginal people.
Ms Selina Swan
Director since 2010
- Currently a Senior Aboriginal Advisor for East Kimberley Youth Justice Service
- Formerly a Project Officer at the Department of Indigenous Affairs
A Ngardi-Kija woman from the Halls Creek region, Selina through her current and past roles communicates across government, communities and NGOs.
Selina has a natural ability to communicate and engage with both Indigenous and non-Indigenous and government and non-government agencies. As an integral member of the Wunan Board, Selina works with Aboriginal people to overcome the life hurdles they face on a daily basis.
Mr Jim Lewis
Director since 2009
- Managing Director, Crosscountry Contractors
(a key employer of the Wyndham area)
- Formerly Executive Officer of Karntewarranginy Kurrumuluny Trust
- Formerly FaHCSIA – Place Manager for Wyndham and Kalumburu
- Formerly Deputy Shire President for the Shire of Wyndham East Kimberley
- Formerly Shire Councillor for the Shire of Wyndham East Kimberley
A Named Applicant on the Kitja Native Title Claim, Jim has grown up in the Wyndham area and has strong family and professional connections throughout the region.
Jim holds a BA in Applied Science – Management and a Graduate Diploma in Community Development. An emerging Leader, Jim is highly engaged in changing the landscape of Indigenous affairs in the East Kimberley. He played a key role in working with government in developing the East Kimberley Development Package which forms part of the Ord Expansion. This package is intrinsically linked to improving the social and economic participation of Aboriginal people.
Jim’s business is a key contributor to training and employment outcomes in the Wyndham area.
Ms Natasha Short
Director since 2011
A descendant of the Djaru people, Natasha’s original home town is Halls Creek albeit Natasha has spent most of her time in Kununurra. Natasha speaks English and Kriol (of the English Creole Language family).
Believing that education is the doorway to a prosperous future, Natasha has worked extensively in areas of justice and education, supporting Indigenous people to broaden their horizons and benefit from the opportunities that modern Australia affords them.
In addition to her work in the East Kimberley, Natasha also lived and worked for a number of years at Looma Community in the West Kimberley.
Natasha offers a compelling vision and optimism for the future of Aboriginal people, attained by hard work and a commitment to change. Through her role on the Wunan Board, she seeks to support Aboriginal people through the change process, and achieve better outcomes for children and families.
Mrs Olive Knight
Director since 2012
Olive Knight is a Walmatjarri elder from the community of Wangkatjungka, near Fitzroy Crossing.
Olive brings to the Wunan Board a wealth of experience, from a lifetime of learning and being fully immersed in her community, working with her people. She has been a strong advocate for aboriginal people, and a spokesperson on their behalf.
Olive is a very well respected role model throughout the Kimberleys, and is known in various circles as a multi linguist, cultural advisor, humanitarian, musician and visionary. She has worked extensively in the areas of health and education. She has been tireless in her pursuit of a better quality of life for others.
Olive recently had the unique experience of singing alongside Hugh Jackman on Broadway in New York, following the release of her first album, ‘Gospel Blues at the Edge of the Desert’.
Ms Michelle Martin
Director since 2012
Michelle is an Aboriginal woman living in Halls Creek who Identifies as a Kija woman. Michelle’s family however comes from several different language groups throughout the Kimberley and she has worked extensively as a Language Worker for the Kimberley Language Resource Centre in Halls Creek.
Michelle has an Associate Diploma in Indigenous Community Management and Development along with considerable experience developed through her role as Community Engagement Officer for the Shire of Halls Creek. Michelle’s current position as Team Leader, Halls Creek Youth Services allows her to make a direct impact on those most in need in the community.
Previously an employee of Wunan, Michelle was the first tenant of Wunan’s then Pindan Place Stepping Stone Housing Model. Through her professional and personal experience with Wunan, Michelle believes she experienced first-hand what Wunan is about both on the ground and at a personal level.
Michelle has a strong understanding of the issues and challenges that Aboriginal people are faced with and believes that by working with Wunan’s Board, she can help to develop ways forward for her people.
Mr Ross Love
Independent Director since 2012
Ross joined the Board of Wunan in February 2012. Ross is the Managing Partner of The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) in Australia and New Zealand, and a member of the firms Asia Pacific Management Team. He has nineteen years’ experience consulting to senior executives and boards in both the private and public sectors.
Ross is also a member of the Business Council of Australia’s Indigenous Engagement and Global Engagement Taskforces, a Director of Jawun – Indigenous Corporate Partnerships, and a member of the International Education Advisory Council, which advises the Australian Government on developing long-term strategy for the international education sector.
Ross is passionate about supporting Aboriginal Leaders, their organisations and communities in finding solutions to Indigenous disadvantage.
Ross grew up in Perth and has a BA with First Class Honours in Politics from the University of Western Australia, a Masters of Public Administration from Harvard University and has completed further business studies at the London Business School. He was Chief of Staff to the Premier of Western Australia (1990-93).
Independent Director since 2012
Trish spent six months working with Wunan in Halls Creek and Kununurra in 2011 and is a passionate advocate for Wunan’s work. She is currently Sydney-based and working as a management consultant with the Boston Consulting Group where she supports change in public and private sector organisations.
Her background includes working with the World Bank and European Commission to assist governments overcome disadvantage in the developing world.