New Government leadership appointments

Reconciliation Australia welcomes the appointment of three Aboriginal parliamentarians to the Federal Government’s leadership team.

“The Hon Linda Burney MP and Senator Malarndirri McCarthy as Minister and Assistant Minister for Indigenous Australians respectively, and Senator Patrick Dodson as Special Envoy for Reconciliation and the Implementation of the Uluru Statement, bring decades of political experience to the government; a level of political and cultural expertise never before seen at our highest levels of leadership,” Reconciliation Australia CEO Karen Mundine said. 

“It’s a clear acknowledgement of the scale of work ahead, both in terms of the implementation of the Uluru Statement from the Heart and the need to embed principles of reconciliation and justice within the Australian political system. 

“Senator Dodson is known as the father of reconciliation through his work as the inaugural Chair of the Council for Aboriginal Reconciliation when he steered the reconciliation process through complex and turbulent waters in its early years. 

“The increased number of First Nations people across the new parliament brings us hope for brave action and Reconciliation Australia looks forward to working with them to help move these agendas forwards 

“Reconciliation has always had multi-party support across parliaments and this support must continue.

“We look forward to working with all sides of parliament to progress reconciliation in this term of parliament and beyond.  

“Progress on reconciliation is what will bond our country together and set the foundation for a more just and equitable nation.” 

Paul House with gum leaves and smoke
Paul Girrawah House

Paul Girrawah House has multiple First Nation ancestries from the South-East Canberra region, including the Ngambri-Ngurmal (Walgalu), Pajong (Gundungurra), Wallabollooa (Ngunnawal) and Erambie/Brungle (Wiradyuri) family groups.

Paul acknowledges his diverse First Nation history, he particularly identifies as a descendant of Onyong aka Jindoomang from Weereewaa (Lake George) and Henry ‘Black Harry’ Williams from Namadgi who were both multilingual, essentially Walgalu-Ngunnawal-Wiradjuri speaking warriors and Ngunnawal–Wallaballooa man William Lane aka ‘Billy the Bull’ - Murrjinille.

Paul was born at the old Canberra hospital in the centre of his ancestral country and strongly acknowledges his First Nation matriarch ancestors, in particular his mother Dr Aunty Matilda House-Williams and grandmother, Ms Pearl Simpson-Wedge.

Paul completed a Bachelor of Community Management from Macquarie University, and Graduate Certificate in Wiradjuri Language, Culture and Heritage and Management from CSU.

Paul provided the Welcome to Country for the 47th Opening of Federal Parliament in 2022. Paul is Board Director, Ngambri Local Aboriginal Land Council, Member Indigenous Reference Group, National Museum of Australia and Australian Government Voice Referendum Engagement Group.  

Paul works on country with the ANU, First Nations Portfolio as a Senior Community Engagement Officer

Acknowledgement of Country

Reconciliation Australia acknowledges Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing  connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders past and present. 

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples should be aware that this website contains images or names of people who have passed away.

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