Aunty Di Kerr OAM
Snr Wurundjeri Elder
Aunty Diane Kerr is a Snr Wurundjeri Elder and knowledge keeper from the Ganun Willam Barak Clan. She is a well-respected community leader and cultural mentor to many in both community and mainstream services. Aunty Diane Kerr has contributed to advocacy and influencing change through her work with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community services and cross sector organisations. Including child protection, health, education, stolen generations, native title, state and local governments. She has been appointed as chair on various councils and committees, notable as the former chair of Native Titles Services Victoria. In 2016, she was appointed to the Aboriginal Treaty Interim Working Group by the Minister of Aboriginal Affairs, Victorian State Government. Aunty Diane Kerr conducts Welcomes to Country at events and gatherings across Naarm (Melbourne). In 2018, she was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for her contribution to the Australian Society.
Born in Iran, Pirooz has called Australia home for the past 24 years where he pursued a career in law and worked in various community-based organisations and statutory bodies over the years. A significant part of his career focused on working with refugees and asylum seekers from different countries including Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Pakistan, Iran, Sudan, Somalia, Burundi, Sierra Leone, Burma, Sri Lanka and Vietnam.
Pirooz has over 20 years’ experience in legal case work, community development, community engagement & project management and policy development within human rights framework. Pirooz is also a brilliant photographer, writer and storyteller; this enables him to understand people’s journey at a deeper level and to connect with these stories. Pirooz has a deep sensitivity in working with people who have experienced war, conflict and loss of culture and home. He has a profound understanding of the impact of these experiences on migrants and refugees and their everyday life in Australia.
Helen has over 30 years of experience in a broad range of roles across the youth, education and community sectors.
Her principal pursuit in these fields is understanding and facilitating the complex dynamics of generational change.
Her passions include working with diverse communities across ‘The West’ of Melbourne, engaging at the intersections of diversity, and practising (and teaching) community development. Her current focus is the Neighbourhood House sector, and transforming communities through grass roots community participation, community leadership and community-based research. She continues her community development work as a custodian of the Community Development Practitioners Community of Practice (in partnership with Network West) and her community leadership work with various local governments, facilitating a groundswell of local action and a platform for community voice. Helen was the recipient of the Vice Chancellors Award for Excellence in Teaching & Learning (VET) in 2017, in recognition of the impact of her community leadership programs.