A journey to leadership from Australia’s first Indigenous female senator
“Within every one of us lies the ability to reach deep inside ourselves and draw upon our inherited strength that our ancestors have given us. There lies a spirit that needs to be awakened.”
Those are the words of Former Senator, Olympic gold medalist and a recipient of an Order of Australia Medal, Nova Peris, who’ll share lessons on leadership from her remarkable and varied career.
Former Senator, Olympic gold medalist and a recipient of an Order of Australia Medal, Nova Peris has led a remarkable and varied career. In 2013, Nova became the first Indigenous female to enter the federal senate. She has also served in various capacities at the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC), Department of Health and Ageing, and Kimberley Land Council.
Prior to her political career, Nova represented Australia in the Olympics in both track and hockey, the latter of which saw her become the first ever Indigenous Australian to win Olympic gold. Young Australian of the Year in 1997, over the past 20 years, Nova has been a tireless campaigner for Indigenous rights, girls’ education and other causes, founding the Nova Peris Girls’ Academy, and holding a number of board and ambassadorial roles in organisations including at Reconciliation Australia and beyondblue.