Norma, a Wiradjuri woman, born in Cowra, NSW has lived most of her life in Redfern and acknowledges she is on the traditional Aboriginal land of the Gadigal. She has over 35 years of experience in serving the Aboriginal community through various roles in education and training. Norma has previously served on the following Boards:
- Congress of Australia’s First Nation’s Peoples
- NSW Red Cross
- Aboriginal Advisory Panel of the City of Sydney Council
- Aboriginal Advisory Panel of the University of Technology, Sydney.
Through formal and informal studies she has kept herself informed on national and local issues. Norma is focusing more on the political aspects of Aboriginal people becoming involved in their communities. She brings her deep knowledge of the local community along with her wealth of knowledge and experience to her role as Chairperson of Wyanga Aboriginal Aged Care Program, a role she has held for many years.
Barbara McGuinness (nee Gowans)Secretary
Barbara, a Wiradjuri Woman from the Riverina town of Temora, came to Sydney in 1966, becoming an active member of the Sydney Metropolitan Aboriginal Community, along with her husband.
She was also an active supporter of the Foundation for Aboriginal Affairs and was previously involved in
- Murawina Aboriginal Child Care Centre (member)
- The Aboriginal Legal Service (member)
- Wirringa Baiya Aboriginal Women’s Legal Centre (director)
- Aboriginal Medical Service, Redfern (director).
Barbara became a member of Wyanga in 2000, has been a member of the Board of Directors since 2004 and has completed her Certificate IV in Governance.
Millie was born and raised on the Aboriginal Reserve, Erambie, in Wiradjuri country, Cowra, NSW. From the early 1960’s she worked in manufacturing industries in Redfern before going to work in Aboriginal affairs when the late Charles Perkins first came to Sydney, where she’s worked since at a community level and in government.
Millie, as CEO of Wyanga for 10 years, was instrumental in negotiating with the federal government to obtain Wyanga’s permanent home at 35 Cope Street, Redfern.
Millie retired in 2013 but is still very much involved in the following:
- Wyanga (Treasurer)
- Inner City Empowered Communities (Board member)
- Advisory Committee for Corrective Services
- Justice Reinvestment NSW Program
- Keeping them Home Project with FACs.
She also attends many varying information programs and workshops in the Inner City area which deal with different issues.
Rhonda, an Aboriginal woman born in Brewarrina, NSW has established family ties there and Walgett, because of resettlement by the government in the 1920s and belongs to the Ngemba and Yualaaraay nations.
She has established links in communities in Sydney and north-west, NSW for family and commitment, and for community involvement and employment opportunities.
Rhonda’s professional career reflects her ability to develop and maintain effective communication in a workplace and the Aboriginal Community as a whole. Through her involvement in Aboriginal specific committees – locally and on regional and state levels, Rhonda has gained further invaluable skills in communicating confidently and in building effective relationships with individual Aboriginal people and groups.
Margret, a Dunghutti and Djerrinja elder, has lived and worked in Gadigal/Eora homelands for over 50 years.
In 1974, initially employed at Murawina Pre School, Redfern as a bus driver and culture teacher, Margret went on to formally train as an infants – kindergarten teacher, graduating in 1979.
During this period, Margret was a founding member of the NSW Aboriginal Education Consultative Group, the most notable community based education service.
She held the Governance position of Vice President during the ground breaking consultations across NSW to produce the historical first Aboriginal Education Policy, launched in1982.
Jarin BaigentChief Executive Officer
Jarin is a Wiradjuri woman with strong connections within the Redfern Aboriginal community on Gadigal country. A consultant, founding member of Indigenous business collective Trading Blak, and owner of activewear brand Jarin Street.
Specialising in community engagement and community led development centring Aboriginal voices in self-determined pathways, Jarin brings a broad range of leadership skills spanning across a number of spaces including government, business, community and youth work.
A co-founder of Trading Blak which was founded in 2020 as a response to the disempowering and harmful impacts of misrepresentation with the Aboriginal business landscape, Jarin has contributed greatly to supporting the growth of the Indigenous business sector in mainstream national and international retail.
With a previous career in justice spanning 13 years, Jarin has a unique insight into the systemic issues Aboriginal communities face within the criminal justice system, and is driven to make change.
From 2018 – 2021 Jarin held the role of Redfern Community Lead at Inner Sydney Empowered Communities helping to drive change at grassroots community led levels.
Jarin sits on the NSW Corrective Services Aboriginal Advisory board.
Jarin is deeply dedicated to looking after elders and empowering her community, and continues her work as CEO of Wyanga Aboriginal Aged Care, Redfern.