Skip links and keyboard navigation

    Media Statements

    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for Local Government and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
    The Honourable Mark Furner

    Queenslanders Honoured at National NAIDOC Awards

    Minister for Local Government and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships
    The Honourable Mark Furner

    Saturday, July 01, 2017

    Queenslanders Honoured at National NAIDOC Awards

    Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders have tonight dominated the honours list at the 2017 National NAIDOC Awards and gala ball in Cairns. 

    Minister for Local Government and Minister for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Partnerships, Mark Furner congratulated all ten of this year’s NAIDOC Award winners. 

    “Outstanding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Queenslanders have been recognised in five of the ten national awards for excellence at tonight’s NAIDOC Awards ceremony in Cairns,” Mr Furner said. 

    “The 2017 NAIDOC Awards are national recognition of the exceptional talent, commitment and achievements of great Indigenous Queenslanders, in whom we can all be immensely proud.” 

    Queensland 2017 National NAIDOC Award recipients include: 

    • Minjerribah Moorgumpin Elders-in-Council Aboriginal Corporation (North Stradbroke, Moreton and Moreton Bay islands)– Caring for Country Award  
    • Latia Schefe (Brisbane) Youth of the Year
    • Elverina Johnson (Yarrabah)–Artist of the Year
    • Sharee Yamashita(Thursday Island/ Weipa) – Apprentice of the Year
    • Faye Carr (Ipswich)– Female Elder of the Year

    “Queensland also has a connection with the 2017 NAIDOC Person of the Year, talented San Antonio Spurs basketballer and three-time Olympian, Patty Mills,” Mr Furner said. 

    “Patty’s father is a Torres Strait Islander from Thursday Island. 

    “On behalf of the Palaszczuk Government and all Queenslanders, congratulations and thank you to all of tonight’s winners and finalists for their exceptional contribution to their communities.” 

    Representing the Premier at tonight’s NAIDOC Awards in Cairns and presenting the National NAIDOC Female Elder of the Year Award was Queensland’s Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy and Minister for Small Business, Leeanne Enoch. 

    Minister Enoch, a Quandamooka woman, is the first Aboriginal woman elected to the Queensland Parliament and Queensland's first Indigenous Minister. 

    “It was an enormous honour to present the 2017 NAIDOC Female Elder of the Year Award to Aunty Faye Carr, an inspirational and highly respected Ipswich-based traditional custodian of Yuggera people,” Ms Enoch said.   

    "NAIDOC is a time to celebrate culture, family and community, and a time to showcase the great strengths of First Nations Peoples, such as Aunty Faye. 

    "This year's theme - Our Languages Matter- provides an opportunity to shine a light on the importance of language and the way in which we share and draw inspiration from our collective stories." 

    Member for Barron River, Craig Crawford said the 2017 NAIDOC Awards had put the spotlight on Cairns as this year’s national host city. 

    “The 2017 NAIDOC Awards have brought visitors to Cairns from across Australia,” Mr Crawford said. 

    “Tonight’s awards and gala ball are an excellent opportunity to showcase to the nation the Far North’s rich Indigenous cultures and achievements, alongside our world-famous destinations including the reef and rainforests.” 

    Media contact:  0475 950 772 (Minister Furner)

                             0412 393 909 (Minister Enoch)