Empowering First Nations peoples - focus on employment

Empowering First Nations peoples - focus on employment

Jun 30
Join CEDA’s panel to discuss how business can develop employment opportunities for first nations people and provide culturally safe environments.
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Shelley Cable, Chief Executive Officer, Generation One, Minderoo Foundation
Troy Cook, Director and General Manager, Community Engagement, Wirrpanda Foundation
Rikki Cooper, Talent Acquisition Business Partner and Indigenous Engagement Specialist, BGIS
Adam Davids, Director, Learning and Innovation, CareerTrackers

Event Overview

"An internship is a rocket ship to a very different future." Michael Combs, Founder, CareerTrackers

According to the Federal Government’s 2020 Closing the Gap report the employment rate for Indigenous Australians has been fairly stable over the last decade at close to 50 per cent. The employment rate for non-Indigenous Australians over the same period has stayed around 75 per cent.
As we look to build strong employment opportunities for all Australians following the COVID hit to our economy, improving employment outcomes for Indigenous Australians must be a priority.
What are the enablers and barriers to participation in employment for Indigenous Australians? How can employers attract and support Indigenous workers?
In this first session of CEDA’s Empowering First Nations Peoples series, we will bring together an expert panel to discuss attracting and supporting Indigenous employees.
Livestream start times:
SA/NT: 12.30pm
WA: 11.00am

Please note all livestream events will be recorded and registered participants will receive exclusive access to the recording following the event, ahead of the general public. Substitutions for the livestream can be made at any time. Please forward details to the event coordinator.


Meet the speakers

Shelley Cable
Chief Executive Officer, Generation One, Minderoo Foundation

Shelley is a Wilman-Nyoongar woman from Perth, and the CEO of Minderoo Foundation’s Generation One initiative. Shelley has dedicated her career to promoting Indigenous leadership and ending economic disparity for her “mob”, striving for the empowerment of Indigenous Australians through financial literacy, and highlighting that self-determination begins with secure employment. She is on a mission to get 300,000 Indigenous Australians into work over the next 20 years.

Troy Cook
Director and General Manager, Community Engagement, Wirrpanda Foundation

A proud Yamatji man from Carnarvon, Troy spent 14 years playing AFL Football for the Sydney Swans and the Fremantle Dockers. Throughout the final years of his AFL career, Troy’s passion for helping his community led him to the Wirrpanda Foundation where he has been instrumental in the development of the organisation since joining in 2007. More recently Troy has moved into the role of General Manager of Community Development where he works with community and businesses to help foster partnerships with the Foundation, leading to tangible opportunities for First Australians. In 2019 Troy took on the additional role of Director, joining the Wirrpanda Foundation Board.

Rikki Cooper
Talent Acquisition Business Partner and Indigenous Engagement Specialist, BGIS

Rikki is a proud Nari-Nari woman whose family hail from the western Riverina region of south western New South Wales. Rikki joined BGIS in 2015 as the Contract Manager for Rio Tinto, before accepting a position on BGIS’ Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) steering committee in 2016 and stepping into the role of National Indigenous Engagement Specialist. Rikki manages BGIS’ RAP deliverables to ensure its workplace culture is one that understands, values and respects the history, culture and contributions that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have made and continue to make. In 2017, Rikki transitioned into her current role as BGIS’ Talent Acquisition Business Partner for the APAC region. With more than 18 years of experience in talent acquisition and Indigenous engagement, Rikki is skilled in employment and engagement, contract management, business planning and change management.

Adam Davids
Director, Learning and Innovation, CareerTrackers

Adam is a proud Aboriginal Australian and descendant of the Wiradjuri people. He completed a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of NSW and in 2019 was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship, the flagship foreign exchange program of the U.S. For more than 12 years Adam has worked in the non-profit sector to address the barriers facing Indigenous students in higher education and professional careers. Adam is driven to increase the representation of Indigenous professionals and executives in corporate Australia and as the Director of Learning at CareerTrackers he has helped thousands of students build upward career mobility.

Meet the facilitator

Nakari Thorpe
Indigenous Communities Reporter, ABC News

Nakari is a proud Gunnai, Gunditjmara and Gooreng Gooreng woman from Victoria and Queensland. She is the Indigenous Communities Reporter with ABC News in New South Wales covering local communities across the state across television, radio and digital. She previously worked as a multi-platform reporter with SBS and NITV covering federal politics in the Canberra Press Gallery and national Indigenous affairs.

Supported by CEDA members

Livestream sponsors

Further sponsorship available:

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Public event advice – Coronavirus

At CEDA we are proud to regularly convene and engage speakers and audiences as an essential element of our efforts to broaden discussion and debate of the most important policy issues facing Australia. In doing so, our first priority is always the safety and wellbeing of our guests and staff.

CEDA is currently delivering a digital program of public events, podcasts and virtual Trustee roundtable discussions; hybrid events with both a livestream and audience in attendance; and face-face events, where there is member demand and they can be delivered in accordance with government health advice for a specific state.

For face-to-face gatherings, CEDA is working closely with our hosts and venues to ensure that social distancing can be maintained and facilities and equipment have been properly sanitised. Attendance numbers will strictly adhere to government guidelines for each state.In line with government advice we request people that are unwell with cough or fever or other respiratory symptoms do not attend CEDA events. We also ask that you follow government advice and maintain social distancing by refraining from shaking hands or exchanging physical greetings, and wherever possible, staying at least 1.5 metres away from others.

CEDA will continue to closely monitor government advice regarding public gatherings and will follow all relevant health advice from the Australian government in relation to COVID-19.

We acknowledge the Traditional Owners of country throughout Australia and recognise their continuing connection to land, waters and culture. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging.

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