Friday, September 22nd, 2023

This week Micky Wunungmurra was elected as the Chairperson of the ALPA Board of Directors after outgoing Chairperson Rev. Dr. Djiniyini Gondarra OAM retired after 30 years to focus on his health and family. Previously ALPA’s Deputy Chairperson since 2005 and representing his home community of Gapuwiyak in East Arnhem Land, Mr Wunungmurra was voted in at this week’s Board and Annual General Meeting (AGM) held in Galiwin’ku.

Mr. Wunungmurra will assume his new duties immediately and says he wanted to take this opportunity to thank his ŋapipi (uncle) and outgoing Chairperson Rev. Dr Djiniyini Gondarra for his tremendous 30-year service to ALPA and wish him well in his retirement journey.

“As Deputy Chairperson (previously), I have learned many things from this man. He has always been a strong leader for Bukmak Yolŋu (everyone) and represented us in both worlds throughout his career as a social justice advocate, Christian leader, and ceremonial lawman.”

“Always a strong advocate for Yolŋu Rom (law) and Madayin (way of life), he still manages to find a balance between Yolŋu ways and balanda (non-Yolŋu person) ways and shares his knowledge with us all the time, and this shows in the success of ALPA and its strong business foundations.” 

“It is difficult to summarise his contribution to ALPA, but since his election in 1993, he has seen it all. He took over a very small organisation, when ALPA only operated eight stores, to where it is today operating more than 25 stores and delivering major community service programs and enterprise businesses.”

Mr Wunungmurra says his appointment will continue to build on Rev. Dr. Gondarra’s vision & legacy and he looks forward to continuing to prioritise the health and wellbeing of First Nations people through education, employment, and business enterprise.

This week also saw a second vote where Director Faye Matjarra Garrawurra representing Ramingining, was elected to the Deputy Chairperson role. 

CEO, Alastair King, says both new appointees are experienced Directors and respected community leaders that will provide leadership to the Board to continue our contribution to the communities and members we serve. 

A dinner was held to honour Rev Dr Gondarra recently and he says he is immensely proud of the ALPA journey and what has been achieved. He is confident in the Board of Directors and wishes them well.

 “I want to pay tribute to Micky Wunungmurra and the exceptional Directors of ALPA. Their dedication and contributions to our organisation have left a permanent mark and a solid foundation for the future. We acknowledge our current Directors and those from the past with deep gratitude.”

 “I sincerely hope that ALPA continues to foster self-sufficiency, economic independence, and cultural preservation. I challenge Yolŋu team members, as well as site and store managers, to work on career pathways for your local team members. They are the key to a successful business and a core strength to our future.

Press release here