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A record four women elected to the NSW Aboriginal Land Council

Dechlan Brennan -

The elections for the New South Wales Aboriginal Land Council has seen two new members voted in, and a record four female councillors elected.

The statewide election in February has seen two new councillors join the seven incumbent members, after the NSW Electoral Commission declared the outcome on Tuesday.

The new members, Ray Kelly for Sydney/Newcastle and Diane Randall for the North Coast, will join the nine-person panel, with the first meeting on March 19 to elect the council's chairperson and deputy chair.

NSWALC chief executive Yuseph Deen said the election came in the midst of a critical time in the land rights history of NSW, with the council being responsible for the allocation of resources for the various regions, as well as making decisions on a range of important issues impacting Indigenous people across the state.

"NSWALC elections are fundamental to the principles of self-determination and community empowerment,'' Mr Deen said.

"The network has never been in a better position to generate ongoing benefits from land acquisition and activation for local Aboriginal Land Councils and Aboriginal communities.''

He thanked the outgoing councillors for their work, noting they will continue to be strong advocates for land rights.

Mr Deen also acknowledged the four women council members, a new record.

"Aboriginal women hold crucial roles across the land rights network, in Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations and within our families and communities, so it is particularly pleasing for NSWALC to reach this milestone, especially in NSW women's week," he said.

There is currently an appeal taking place in the Central Region, which saw Grace Toomey elected unopposed after the electoral commission declared the result at the close of nominations on January 30.

In a statement, the NSWALC said they had "become aware that an application has been lodged with the Land and Environment Court, as the Court of Disputed Returns for the NSWALC Elections, for the election of Councillor for the Central Region."

"We want to confirm that Councillor Toomey remains the duly elected Councillor for the Central Region until the Court rules, and subject to the ruling may remain so afterwards," they said.

Council Members

• Central – Cr Grace Toomey

• Mid North Coast – Cr Peter Smith

• North Coast – Cr Diane Randall

• North-Western – Cr Anne Dennis

• Northern – Cr Charles Lynch

• Sydney/Newcastle – Cr Ray Kelly

• South Coast – Cr Danny Chapman

• Western – Cr Ross Hampton

• Wiradjuri – Cr Leeanne Hampton

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