Central Land Council (CLC) has elected a new gender balanced leadership team at a meeting in Yulara Pulka outstation near Uluru.
With only four votes separating them, Barbara Shaw was elected deputy chair and Sammy Wilson was elected chair of CLC.
Ms Shaw is a youth worker who works with the women’s family safety group at Tangentyere’s Brown Street Youth Drop-in Centre.
She was previously employed by the Royal Commission into the Protection and Detention of Children in the Northern Territory.
Ms Shaw also has experience in the political arena, having run for the seat of Lingiari as a Greens candidate in both 2010 and 2013.
Winning a total of 41 votes in the CLC election, she is the second woman in CLC history to be elected into office.
“My election results show that the Central Land Council is ready for change,” Ms Shaw said.
Mr Wilson hails from the Mutitjulu community and is chair of the joint management board of Uluru Kata Tjuta National Park.
“It feels very special to be elected on my grandfather Paddy Uluru’s country,” Mr Wilson said.
He also owns and operates Uluru Family Tours, a cultural tourism company.
Mr Wilson promised to pursue the Uluru Statement from the Heart with the winners of the upcoming federal election.
“We want to sit down with them at the same table and be listened to,” Mr Wilson said.
After six years of service as CLC chair, Francis Kelly was thanked by new chair Mr Wilson and presented with a kulata (spear) and mirru (spear thrower).
Representatives from 75 remote outstations and communities also voted to decide the new members of CLC’s executive and Aboriginals Benefit Account (ABA) advisory committees.
By Hannah Cross