Dr. Kerry Arabena is Co-Chair of the National Congress of Australia's First Peoples and is a descendant of the Meriam people from the Torres Strait.
First trained as a social worker, Kerry was recently awarded a doctorate from the Fenner School at the Australian National University in Human Ecology. She has an extensive background in public health, administration, community development and research.
Professional appointments range from political agencies to health services and include one of the most remote Aboriginal Medical Services in Australia, the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies and the Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health.
Dr Arabena's work has included coordinating population health strategies across northern Australia and contributions to Australia and the Asia Pacific region in cross-jurisdictional areas such as gender issues, social justice, human rights, violence, access and equity, service provision, harm minimisation and citizenship rights and responsibilities. She has also represented Australia in international forums on HIV/AIDS and climate change.
Positions held include Director of the Regional Governance Unit in the Office of Indigenous Policy Coordination; Executive Director of Sexual Health and Family Planning ACT and Reproductive Healthcare Services in Canberra; Apunipima Cape York Health Council in Queensland; and Pintubi Homelands Health Service in the Northern Territory.
Dr. Arabena has also been a representative on a range of local, state and national councils and committees including chairing the International Advisory Committee for Sexual Health and Family Planning Australia, the National Indigenous Australians Sexual Health Committee and as the Chairperson of the ACT Healthpact Health Promotion Board.