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2022-06-01 10:13:18

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Advisory Council

Samuel Savage

Chairperson

Samuel Savage is a proud Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander man who respects, practises, and promotes his diverse cultures to his family and broader communities throughout Australia. Born and raised in Townsville and having cultural ties to the Townsville region as a descendant of the Birrigubba Nation, Sam respects and acknowledges his connection to country and values his father’s Torres Strait Islander connection to country on Mauar (Rennell Island) in the Torres Strait.

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Learning about family kinships, traditional healing, traditional hunting practices, traditional cooking, respecting spiritual dreaming, totems, caring for country is an important focus area for Sam that he appreciates every day.

With more than 30 years’ experience working in various government and community sectors such as education, housing, employment, natural resource management, youth justice and child protection, Sam has strived to change mindsets, attitudes, and behaviours towards First Nations peoples within systems and communities.

Sam's current role is Northern Queensland Emergency Services Regional Coordinator where he works in the Emergency Services sector with Australian Red Cross at a regional, state, and national level. Sam is the current Chairperson of the Australian Red Cross National First Nations Recovery Group and a member of the Australian Red Cross National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Leadership Team. Sam recently has become a member of the National Taskforce for Creative Recovery, a cross-industry collaboration that brings together key influencers in disaster management, mental health, government, and the arts to forge pathways for new thinking in response to the unprecedented challenges being faced by communities.

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Angelina Akee

Deputy chairperson

Angelina Akee has both traditional and historical links to the North Queensland region, including but not limited to Townsville, Bowen, Palm Island and Yarrabah as well as to her mother’s traditional homeland in the Torres Strait on Erub (Darnley Island) and Kirirri (Hammond Island).

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Angelina is the Chair of ABIS Community Co-operative Society Limited, Townsville, and brings extensive executive management and director experience across the housing, community care, lega,l and health sectors. She is also currently a Director of the North Queensland Land Council.

Angelina has served as Chair of The Cultural Centre Trust, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Legal Services, and the Townsville Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Corporation for Women; Founding Member of, the Aboriginal Child Care Agency, Townsville Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders Corporation for Women and Magani Malu Kes Townsville Limited; and, Secretary of the National Secretariat of Torres Strait Islander Organisations Limited.

Angelina continues to work actively in advocacy for housing, youth, disability, and health for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. She brings to the ATSICAC a wealth of experience and a deep understanding of the challenges faced by Elders and those with disabilities accessing equitable health and social well-being support services. She acknowledges the need to bring traditional cultural protocols to meet the modern world and works tirelessly to bridge this gap.

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Randal Ross

ATSICAC Member

Randal is of Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and South Sea Islander descent from Townsville and surrounding districts. He is of Bindal, Juru and Ompila Aboriginal ties and a descendant of Erub and his Australian South Sea connection hails from Tanna, Santo and Ambrym Island. 

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Randal currently works with North and West Remote Health as the Manager for Cultural and Community Relations covering more than 40 communities through Townsville, Gulf and Central Queensland as far as Longreach and Birdsville. 

The Townsville Hospital and Health Service is a main hub for many of the communities that he covers in remote and rural communities, and he feels it is important to ensure that our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people are receiving appropriate health services when arriving in Townsville. Randal believes it is important to ensure that the Townsville hospital and healthcare services are culturally appropriate and culturally sensitive to the needs of all our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and peoples.

 Randal has served on numerous boards including the Jezzine Barracks Trust Fund which was a Prime Ministerial- appointed committee and has served on Townsville Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation for Media, TAIHS, Garbutt Magpies and Garbutt Bombers Sporting and Cultural Association.

Randal is also the Co-founder of a national recognized therapeutic family healing program Red Dust Healing which has been operating for over fifteen years nationally and internationally.

 He has worked on several Reconciliation Action Plans (RAP) for several organisations including the NWRH Innovate RAP, Ronald Macdonald House Innovate RAP and Ausco Modular Homes Innovate RAP.

Randal is committed to ensure many of our Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and Australian South Sea Islanders peoples have services available to access in this ever-changing society. He aims to ensure the Townsville Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Council maintains good governance to serve our communities in North Queensland.

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Francis Tapim

ATSICAC member

Francis Tapim is a Torres Strait Islander Elder of the Townsville community. He is from Mer (Murray Island) and attended his early primary school years there before moving to Thursday Island, later moving to Innisfail and then Townsville.

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Francis has worked across of industry sectors including a fireman with the Railway Department in Townsville, in Western Australia on the Dampier to Mt Tom Price line, childcare, President and later Chief Executive Officer of the Magani Kes Information and Resource Centre and maintenance manager.

A talented sportsman, he represented Townsville in rugby league as a member of the Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait side which toured New Zealand in 1973.

Francis maintains his strong traditional connection to the Torres Strait and culture and has acted over the past 30 years as an adviser to local, State and National committees on issues impacting on mainland Torres Strait Islanders, most recently on the traditional adoption where Torres Strait Islander people can now apply for legal recognition of Ailan Kastom (Torres Strait Islander) child rearing practice under the Meriba Omasker Kaziw Kazipa (Torres Strait Islander Traditional Child Rearing Practice) Act 2020.

He is passionate about empowering youth to seek all opportunities and as Property Maintenance Manager with an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander housing cooperative, has been mentoring unemployed youth to forge pathways to work through a Queensland training program, helping these youth learn practical skills while building their self-confidence.

Francis brings to the advisory council a wealth of experience in dealing with all levels of government and the challenges of community members accessible mainstream support services.

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Moses Nelliman

Moses Nelliman is a proud Torres Strait Islander, and his family connections include Mer (Murray Island) and Badu Island. Moses currently works at Department of Seniors, Disability Services & Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships, Townsville Service Centre. He is the Senior Project Officer and team leader of the Economic Participation Team which actively assists Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander jobseekers into employment or training that will lead into employment.

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Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships is the lead Queensland Government agency that engages with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, peoples, and programs.

Moses has actively served on numerous Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander organising committees including Townsville NAIDOC Committees and Townsville Mabo Day Committees.

Prior to becoming a Queensland public servant, Moses served as a police officer in the Queensland Police Service for 19 years working in remote Indigenous localities in Northern Peninsula Area (NAP), Thursday Island and Palm Island.

As a result of Moses’ professional and lived experience, he has a passion to serve his community and aspire to develop capacity within Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Moses is aware that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander economic participation and access to appropriate health services is heavily connected, and, in particular, access to relevant mental health support.

Moses seeks to serve on the council as a Queensland public servant and a representative of the Townsville Torres Strait Islander community.

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Jordan Frazier

ATSICAC member

Jordan Frazier is of Aboriginal descent and was raised in Mount Isa. Jordan has ties to the Kalkatungu (Kalkadoon) and Mitakoodi people of Northwest Queensland and is a direct descendant of the Yanyuwa people of the McArthur River region in the Northern Territory and the Bwgcolman people of Palm Island in Queensland.

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Jordan currently works in a unique advocacy role with Jangga Operations Pty Ltd focusing on program development and implementation and has also been appointed in a separate capacity to establish a not-for-profit organisation whose purpose is to provide culturally specific and appropriate education, training and employment opportunities to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people particularly those who are from rural and remote areas, marginalised by society, at risk, women, youth and victims of domestic violence.

Jordan commenced his career in health science and has held middle and senior management roles across group training, employment services and NDIS sectors. Jordan has worked on several projects with a strategic focus on organisational culture, change management and service delivery.

Jordan has previously served as a director for Ocean to Outback Employment Service in the Gascoyne Region of Western Australia and as a Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) Working Group member for MAX Employment Australia.

Determined to address grass root issues in the Townsville region, Jordan is passionate about consumer advocacy and consultation to inform strategic vision, planning, growth, transformation, and reform.

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Zoey Oliver

Zoey Oliver is of Aboriginal and Australian South Sea Islander descent with family ties to Waanyi (Burketown) and Kuku Yalanji (Mossman). Zoey is passionate about mental health and supporting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women who are victims of family and domestic violence to seek culturally safe, trauma-informed appropriate support for not only their physical and emotional wellbeing, but also that of their children, at the hospital.

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Zoey’s work history includes work as a support worker at Child Protection, advocating for children in care whilst employed at the Office of the Public Guardian and as a Field Officer at the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service where I obtained a Diploma in Indigenous Legal Studies and is currently work in administration for a local law firm. Zoey is committed to ensuring First Nations' Women's voices are heard at Townsville University Hospital as First Nations people are 33 times more likely to be hospitalised due to family and domestic violence, despite making up less than 10 per cent of the Australian population.

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Fred Chong

ATSICAC Member – Ingham ATSI Community Advisory Network representative

Fred Chong is a proud Elder of the Wakaman group which covers the far north Queensland from Chillgoe, Tate and Mitchell Rivers area. He is retired but maintains connections in the community through his voluntary work at the Ingham Health Service and through local NAIDOC celebrations.

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Fred was born in the Mareeba Hospital in 1946 and spent the first 5 years of his life with his grandparents in the Tate River area where he lived off the land with his grandparent’s and the method of transport was on horseback.

Fred is passionate about the health and wellbeing of young people, crime prevention and educating youth about the dangers of misusing alcohol and drugs.

Fred believes that it is important to have services that are specific for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people because it helps with understanding the importance of healthcare and treatment. It also makes our mob feel culturally safe and comfortable knowing that these services are here to assist them.

Fred has served with the Hinchinbrook Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Legal Service and on the Hinchinbrook NAIDOC Committee.

Fred is committed to continuing to represent the Ingham Indigenous community on the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Advisory Network to bring local health matters to the Board table.

Achievements and representation on the following committees.

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Community Advisory Council – 2018 – Now
  • West Moreton regional community education councillor
  • State community education counsellor (Chair)
  • National community’s education counsellor (Chair)

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