We have a dynamic, talented and dedicated team working across our cross-cultural facilitation, language and multimedia work as well as ensuring quality programming and broadcast of Yolŋu Radio. Our Nhulunbuy and Darwin office provide invaluable support.
Johanna has worked in a range of roles within the context of Indigenous community development. Prior to commencing with ARDS as CEO, she worked with BHP Iron Ore and was responsible for supporting the Indigenous Employment strategy, including the design and implementation of the Indigenous mentoring program and other organisational capacity building programs.
Previously, she worked in a range of roles in Arnhem Land including community and government leadership roles.
Gaia is the radio manager and oversees staff and operations in Nhulunbuy, based at Gayŋuru Studios. Her passion for creative community development and media drives her through building the capacity of the team for excellent outcomes in the delivery of Yolŋu Radio, event and music production services and other projects that contribute to the aims and objectives of ARDS.
I strongly believe in the power of creative arts and community media to affect positive change in communities. Combine that with the ARDS methodology of working with people through language, culture and worldview and incredible things happen.
Paul (Ahva) Hayes
Ahva has helped create a focus on the local music and performance industry, including recording, sales and live performance and event production.
I just love Yolŋu culture and music and working together with our team to create fulfilling projects!
Daniel Balawurr Hick
Daniel has been training on the job with Yolŋu Radio Rirrakay Mala as a lighting technician and sound engineer. He has also been working as a studio assistant at Gayŋuru Studios, working on a number of ARDS projects and radio programs.
Shane Mäwul Dhamarrandji
Shane is an up and coming sound engineer from Milingimbi, excelling in both the studio and live situations. He has operated the stage mix at Garma 2015 and 2016, and has assisted on a number of recordings at Gayŋuru Studios. Mäwul is also a Yolŋu Radio presenter, hosting multiple outside broadcasts as well as producing his own show Dhapirrk Rirrakay with Mäwul Dhamarrandji.
Keisha is from Dhalinbuy and has a great talent for all things audio-visual. Keisha works on both radio and film projects as a sound recordist and camera operator, and is a presenter on Burwu Show.
Andrew plays a vital role at Yolŋu Radio as senior presenter and producer. He produces and presents two shows weekly, the Andrew Gurruwiwi Show and Manymak Ŋaliŋu Dhäwu, as well as doing a lot of behind the scenes work for Burwu Show. He is also an award winning songwriter and renowned musician, bringing all his many talents and charms to his radio work.
Roberta presents and produces for Burwu Show; she has also works as a sound recordist and camera operator for film projects.
Jean is from Birritjimi, and works as a presenter with Burwu Show, encouraging and supporting a lot of the behind the scenes work. Jean particularly enjoys recording stories from the homelands and presenting for outside broadcasts.
Larry has been leading trips to homelands schools, getting radio stories and running music workshops with the kids. At Gayŋuru studio's, Larry does session work as a keyboardist, singer and songwriter. He has been involved with, the Gälpu Manikay album for the Buliaŋu Songline, Bärra West Wind's Gawurr Yothu Yindi Gospel album, as well as song writing on the Djamakuli Album.
Andrew works as the Producer for Yolŋu Radio. Based in Yirrkala, he has been encouraging and building the radio team, developing new radio shows and supporting studio activities at Gayŋuru in Nhulunbuy.
Jamie’s work includes cross-cultural facilitation, education, professional development and mentoring within and outside the organisation.
I’m passionate about the work of ARDS because we’re working to redress the frequent miscommunication and misunderstanding and subsequent disempowerment of Aboriginal people in remote areas.
Emma has worked with and communities across Australia for since 1998, particularly Aṉangu in Central Australia and Yolŋu in Arnhem Land. With ARDS, she works on a variety of projects in the areas of health education and language. Emma brings to the team experience in training Aboriginal people in the skills they need to revive, maintain and teach their own languages.
“Working alongside Aboriginal people, learning from them, putting a strong commitment to self-determination into practice, has been a major theme through my working life. ARDS’ commitment to telling Yolŋu stories and building bridges of meaning between different languages and cultures makes it a wonderfully challenging and diverse place to work and learn.”
It is a deep privilege to work closely with Aboriginal peoples, in a role that sees their worldviews and knowledge as being crucial to more effective conversations about the things that impact their lives.
Dave has been visiting, living and working in a variety of North East Arnhem Land communities since he was 20 years old learning from Yolŋu about culture and language since 2006.
I’m driven by a passion for removing the barriers that perpetuate inequality and I’m excited to be part of building cross-cultural understandings that contribute towards self-determination.
Vince’s role with ARDS involves both strengthening the corporation’s governance and facilitating special projects that sit outside ARDS other department areas.
His work with ARDS board of directors and CEO involves maintaining ARDS compliance with regulatory bodies as well as improving internal governance and operational processes and procedures.
It is a challenging role that I am continuing to grow into and one that I greatly enjoy.
Eileen's role includes scheduling the radio content, dealing with sponsorship clients and assuring that everything that needs to go to air, does.
Working with ARDS has given me an appreciation and understanding in part, of the cultural differences between Yolŋu and Balanda, as well the similarities. I count it a privilege to be part of this organisation with its heart for this first nation’s people.
Monika works to ensure the office and admin processes are practiced and followed correctly and that our staff and business are effective in providing our core interests.
My passion at ARDS is to accomplish great changes to enrich our communities and its people by showing compassion and understanding so that we can live together peacefully in our worlds.
We are wanting to find ways of sharing language, to keep our languages strong. Yolŋu language is not the only language that has these needs, we are part of something bigger in strengthening other languages too. Our languages are the first languages of this nation, all around Australia
Napurr ga djälthirr ARDS djämamirr mala ŋayi dhu ga ḏäl ŋorra dhukarr marŋgikunharaw dhärukku mala. Yaka yan Yolŋu Matha, wiripu wiripu Dhäruk mala, napurr dhu ḏälkum. Dhäruktja napurruŋ dhuwal ŋurruŋu dhiyal makarr-yindiŋur wäŋaŋur Australia-ŋur buku-ḻiw’maram
I am excited about working alongside Indigenous language workers and other energetic staff members. My ARDS colleagues have skills and knowledge in the Yolŋu and Balanda worlds, and I have plenty to learn from our team and from others in this field! The language component of all ARDS projects is vital, and I enjoy strengthening our work with Indigenous language’s.
Donna is a highly experienced bookkeeper who has a long history working in the finance and accounting industry. Donna enjoys the busy nature of the business and is someone who is always keen to learn and take on new challenges.
Jorja is a student Nurse at Charles Darwin University as well as a Cross Cultural Facilitator in training at ARDS.
I am passionate about equality, health promotion and prevention. I hope to one day use my knowledge from nursing and my training at ARDS, to facilitate empowerment that builds on Indigenous people’s incredible cultural vitality.
Ben has a long history working Central Australia, working in creative arts, education, screen and media production. Ben has taught creative media and screen production for 7 years at Charles Darwin University and is now very happy to be producing films with Yolŋu people.
I love documentary filmmaking. Yolŋu people have such wonderful stories to share. Making films to share these stories is very a rewarding creative venture.
Joy Bulkanhawuy is senior Djambarrpuyŋu person and a highly-skilled and experienced cross-cultural facilitator and educator.
Bulkanhawuy has worked with ARDS for many years, supporting two-way learning and cross-cultural communication, particularly in the area of health. Bulkanhawuy most recently co-wrote and co-produced Dhukarr Muḻkurrgu Gunŋga'yunaraw (Pathways in Mental Health) – an educational DVD that supports learning and development within the Indigenous mental health sector.
Andrew Galitju Burarrwaŋa
Galitju is a senior elder within the Gumatj Clan Nation(s) and is well-versed in the traditions and cultural practices of Yolŋu people. He has a long history of working with ARDS as a Yolŋu consultant over a number of projects, particularly the recording of Gurraŋay dhäruk (words/stories) and manikay (songs). He is strongly committed to helping younger persons and future generations to learn about Yolŋu systems of knowledge and use this to build their lives and futures on firm foundations.
It is now more than 35 years since I first set foot in Arnhem Land and ARDS and began to encounter/engage the lived experience of Indigenous people who do not speak English as their first or second language. Along the way I have acquired some facility to dialogue with Yolŋu about the wide range of issues and challenges that they face on a regular basis. Through careful listening and in-depth discussions about a wide range of topics incorporating the fields of economics, law, health, education and governance, new understandings are formed and new words emerge to help us to negotiate this most interesting bilingual and bicultural space. This is what I do in ARDS.
James Wapiriny Gurruwiwi
Wapiriny is an Indigenous consultant from Galiwin’ku with extensive local government experience in Arnhem Land contexts. His depth of cultural knowledge about traditional Yolŋu systems of management has been utilised in many ARDS education projects and radio programs.
Sylvia works in the multimedia department at ARDS. Her 2015 ARDS production, ‘Bulunu Milkarri’ won ‘Best Language Film’ at ImagineNATIVE Film Festival in Canada. Sylvia speaks and reads Djambarrpuyŋu and is a confident studio operator. She also presents a weekly ‘Dhawu-dhawu’ program in Yolŋu language which won the 2016 Best New Radio Talk Show at the Community Broadcasting Assoc, of Australia (CBAA) conference in Melbourne.
Bryan MacDonald (Ŋarritj)
I have work with ARDS a number of times before. The first was in 1998. Before this I had worked in Arnhem Land firstly at Gapuwiyak doing mechanical maintenance in the 1980s and then Galiwin’ku and Yirrkala as a MAF pilot. My work with ARDS has involved sexual health/microscope education for men, legal education and also working with Yolŋu Radio. In recent years I have been in Central Australia doing land management work with Walpiri rangers at Lajamanu and managing a community store at Ikuntji (Haasts Bluff). It is great to be back in the Top End.
I have been always interested in the different cultural heritages of the World.I was born in Europe and was studying philosophy, anthropology and religion, also developing educational websites about Australian Aboriginal Culture. The Yolŋu languages, history, music and arts have been my passion for many years, especially the yiḏaki, that brought me to Australia. I am doing my diploma in Yolŋu Studies at CDU. It is a privilege to be with ARDS, the greatest opportunity for me to work together with the experienced Team and the Indigenous people of this unique Land.
My name is Salome and I’m pleased to come back to ARDS after a break of about 12 years. I did most of my growing up between North-east Arnhem Land, and Melbourne. I have worked at Indigenous Language Centres in Katherine and Ngukurr, where we focussed on documenting and revitalising the local endangered languages, and translation projects into the lingua franca, Kriol. Other experience includes working for AIATSIS and the University of Melbourne on language documentation projects, and at Batchelor as a lecturer in linguistics.
My interest in working for ARDS is that I get to do language work as part of a great team, learning, teaching, and working with some languages of my heart, Yol\u languages.
I am passionate about working with ARDS and the professional Team. It is a great opportunity to learn from my experienced colleagues, also to get closer to the Yolŋu people and their culture. With my administration and event management background, also as a photographer I am excited to be in the ARDS Team and involved in different beautifully challenging roles.
My name is Martha and I'm 22 years old. I started working with ARDSin late June, early July this year. I worked with A.I.S when I was 16/17, then I was introduced to Yolŋu Radio. Ever since I walked into the building of ARDS I've felt as if I'm at home. There is no such thing as lack of communication here, we're all in it together.
I’m interested in the challenge of communicating between cultures and what it reveals about our assumptions and understanding of the world. I think we all have a lot to learn about ourselves and about others from thoughtful and respectful engagement with other languages and ideas. I’m excited to be able to work on projects that aim to put that into practice.
I have worked as a commercial lawyer in Melbourne and a criminal lawyer in Darwin and East Arnhem Land, especially working with Yolngu and Warnindilyakwa people. I have also studied linguistics and I want to keep learning about Aboriginal languages and how language is used in the Australian legal system.