KWT Former Board Member
Stephanie Armstrong is a Gamilaraay woman who comes from a large extended family in northern NSW. Her husband, two grown daughters and other family members and friends have been supportive of Stephanie's need to make a difference in Aboriginal education and health. She has worked for nearly 40 years in rural, remote and urban contexts in various roles providing her with the skills and experiences she requires in both her consultancy business and her personal life. Stephanie is on many local committees and volunteers within her local Bendigo community and Melbourne, including co-chairing the Bendigo Reconciliation committee.
Her role as Aunty within the Weenthunga Health Network over the last 12 months has been focused on encouraging local First Australian girls to stay at school and seek career pathways in health as well as be there as a person with lived experience to back First Nation womxn and allies. This work has seen her establish networks and projects to back many young women in Bendigo. In 2018, her work led to the establishment of expanded girls' programs in Geelong and Melbourne. Her commitment to providing leadership and cultural programs for community continues to grow.
Career highlights include receiving the Rowan Nicks Russell Drysdale Fellows in 2013, the Fellowship for Indigenous Leadership Emerging Leader award (2013-2014), a Bendigo NAIDOC recognition award in 2017, and a Commitment to Indigenous Health Award at the 2018 Indigenous Allied Health Forum in Sydney.
In 2019 she was the first Aboriginal Level 3 manager within a school context in WA. She hoped that the stepping back into a school ground would provide insights, courage and humility to create space for young First Nation students' voice to lead and transform an education system which has been challenged by many First Nation educator for decades.
Stephanie sees a need for dramatic change in how work is done in education and health - the way forward lies in working with First Nations' peoples within the cultural interface and that sovereignty and voice be widely recognised and given respect. denotes Aboriginal English concepts.