The Victorian Government has appointed respected reconciliation advocate Justin Mohamed as the state’s new Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People.

A Gooreng Gooreng man from Bundaberg in Queensland, Mr Mohamed has spent much of his career working in the Aboriginal health and sport sectors, improving outcomes and connections to culture for Aboriginal people, including children.

He is a leader in reconciliation, having served as the CEO of Reconciliation Australia for three years until 2017, and was most recently the CEO of Equity Health Solutions.

He has also been the director of the Academy of Sport, Health and Education, based at the University of Melbourne’s Shepparton campus, and CEO of Rumbalara Aboriginal Co-Operative.

Mr Mohamed has also held several board positions including chairperson for the National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation and was a member of the Closing the Gap National Steering Committee.

He will begin his five-year term on May 28.

Filling big shoes

His appointment comes following the departure of inaugural Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People Andrew Jackomos in January.

Mr Jackomos, a Yorta Yorta/Gunditjmara man, advocated for the establishment of the Aboriginal Children’s Forum and the Victorian Aboriginal Children and Young People’s Alliance, and led a number of landmark inquiries into the care of Aboriginal children.

The role of Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People exists to ensure the safety and wellbeing of Aboriginal children and young people, and to connect them, their families and carers to quality and inclusive services that support them.

“I’m honoured to be appointed the new Commissioner for Aboriginal Children and Young People and am extremely proud to continue the great work of the inaugural Commissioner Andrew Jackomos,” Mr Mohamed said.

“I look forward to building upon his work to the best of my ability to deliver positive outcomes for Aboriginal children, young people and families in Victoria.”