Bev Manton re-elected to serve her second term as Chairperson of the State’s peak Aboriginal organisation – NSWALC.

Land Council Chair and Deputy Chair re-elected for second term.

14 May, 2009

Bev Manton, a Worimi women from Karuah on the NSW Central Coast, was today re-elected to serve her second term as Chairperson of the State's peak Aboriginal organisation, the New South Wales Aboriginal Land Council (NSWALC).

Today's election for both the Chair and Deputy Chair positions, also saw the Deputy Chairperson, Councillor Tom Briggs, re-elected for a second term.

Chairperson Manton has had a long and active involvement at all levels in the land rights system in NSW.  She has been involved with NSWALC since its inception and is also a founding member of the Karuah Local Aboriginal Land Council.

She was first elected Chairperson in May, 2007.

Councillor Briggs, a member of Gumbainggir nation, is the Councillor for NSWALC's Northern Region which takes in such locations as Armidale, Tamworth, Glen Innes, Guyra, Amaroo and Inverell.

Both Councillor Manton and Councillor Briggs said they were privileged and honoured to be re-elected.

"It has been a demanding yet exciting two years," Councillor Manton added.

"I want to thank my fellow Councillors for their vote of confidence.   I think we have made a strong and decisive team.  I also believe Councillor Briggs and I have provided sound political leadership and direction in working to improve the health and wellbeing of our people.

"We all have an enormous responsibility to our people and once elected you feel that responsibility constantly.

"After all, we represent some 25,000 members and there is an enormous amount of work to be done to improve land rights outcomes for the membership.   I am totally committed to making a positive contribution to improving opportunities for all of our 121 land Councils."

Chairperson Manton added that NSWALC faced many challenges.

"In the last two years we have put our house in order. We have two clear audits and initiated major programs such as the $200 million joint NSWALC/State Government water and sewerage program and the $30 million NSWALC funded Education Endowment Fund.

"We are about outcomes, positive outcomes. We have set a reform agenda for the next two years based on our key priorities in our corporate plan.  Our biggest challenges will be:

  • The sustainability of our network,
  • Social Housing reform,
  • The establishment of an Aboriginal Heritage Commission in NSW,
  • The establishment of a new partnership agreement with the State and Federal Governments, and
  • The lead up to the next State election.

"We will also be pushing forward with joint venture opportunities and training programs to enable our members to take advantage of new and emerging economic opportunities.

"We will also work hard to continue are constructive working relationship with the State Government."

Chairperson Manton who has been married for 42 years, has four children and nine grandchildren, also represents her people on a number of Boards, including the Worimi Conservation Lands Board and the Aboriginal Community Environment Network.  She is also a member of the State Government's Ministerial Advisory Panel on child sexual abuse.

Ms Manton was nominated for the NSW Woman of the Year in 2007.

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Further Information:  Peter Windsor: Mobile 0400 554 603