Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Panel
The Advisory Panel comprises up to eight independent members who provide expert advice to the Council as it works to understand and address the over-representation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in Queensland’s criminal justice system.
The Advisory Panel is designed to give a stronger voice to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities, a better sense of how Queensland communities are affected by current sentencing, and insight into what changes might be made to improve outcomes.
The Panel was launched in November 2018 and meets bi-monthly.
Chair – Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Advisory Panel
Bevan is a Wakka Wakka man and Elder within the Cherbourg community. He is a trained Secondary Teacher having studied with Griffith University and has 30 years’ experience with Education Queensland. Bevan is Principal at the Silver Lining School in the South Burnett and is Chair of the Barambah Justice Group at Cherbourg. He is a respected Elder, leader and a Traditional Owner of his country and sits on the local Murri Court. Bevan was a founding member of the Ration Shed Museum, played rugby league at a professional level – representing Queensland – and has served two terms as a local government councillor at Cherbourg.
Laurie is a police officer serving in Townsville, having graduated from the Townsville Police Academy through the Indigenous Recruit Police Program (IRPP). Previously he was a Police Liaison Officer for the Queensland Police Service (QPS) in Cunnamulla.
His first job was as a sheep shearer, and he later worked as a shearing teacher and mentor for disengaged Indigenous youth at Merriman Station at Brewarrina, NSW. Laurie’s family are Kamilaroi People, from northern New South Wales, but he grew up in the heart of Kooma, in south west Queensland.
Raymond is an Environmental Technician working in the resources sector and is based in Brisbane. Previously he delivered cultural programs for young men and boys who are affected by the criminal justice system.
Through his mother he has connections with Gureng-Gureng, outside Bundaberg, and the Gungahlu tribe from outside Theodore in central Queensland.
Through his father’s tribal heritage he has connections to the Torres Strait Island of Mabiaug, and also the Wiri tribe, Mackay, and the Githabul tribe from the northern NSW area of Muli-Muli.
Boneta-Marie is an award-winning visual artist and a Youth Programs Manager at Sisters Inside, where she leads the Young Indigenous Art Program.
She has collaborated with the Royal Australian Mint to design a commemorative 50c coin; was inaugural artist-in-residence for the State Library of Queensland’s kuril dhagun Indigenous centre; and won the 2014 People’s Choice Award in the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Telstra Art Award.
Boneta-Marie is a Piadram, Munbarra and South Sea Islander woman. Piadram is her Mer Island clan in the Torres Straits through her grandfather Eddie Koiki Mabo and she is Munbarra – the traditional lands of what is known as Palm Island – through her grandmother Bonita Mabo. She is also a descendant of stolen sugar slaves from Tanna Island.
She is also a member of the Council.
Stephen is the Executive Manager of the Indigenous Justice Program (Projects) in the Courts Innovation Program, Court Services Queensland. Previously he was the Acting Senior Sergeant, Project Manager for Cairns Safer Streets, improving community safety and well-being through community and whole-of-government partnerships. Stephen had been a police officer with QPS for 20 years, working throughout far north Queensland, including Cape York and the Torres Strait.
Stephen also volunteers as a Director for the Northern Pride Rugby League Football Club, and as a member of the Queensland Rugby League Indigenous Advisory Committee.
Stephen is a Torres Strait Islander; his mother is from St Paul’s on Moa Island.
Graham is Director of Sector Engagement and Communications at the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service, Brisbane. He has worked in government for more than 15 years, in roles that have involved policy development, program management, human resources and service delivery. He has also been involved with community sporting groups as a player, manager and in coaching positions all of his life.
Graham is an Iman man through his grandmother’s connection to the Taroom Mission; she was later relocated to Woorabinda.