Our Board

Gayle Rankine

Chairperson, FPDN Board

Gayle Rankine is Chairperson of First Peoples Disability Network Australia (FPDN)
Gayle is a Ngarrindjeri woman born in Raukkan (Point McLeay Mission) on Lake Alexandrina in South Australia.
Gayle has represented Australia and FPDN at the United Nations in Geneva and New York.
Gayle has extensive knowledge of the needs of people with disability across urban, rural and remote communities. She has a lived experience as a person with physical disability and as a carer of relatives with physical and neurological disability, including autism.

Suzy Kemp

Board Member

Suzy Kemp is a proud Wiradjuri woman living on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland. Suzy is an accomplished artist. Her mother is Indigenous artist Eve Kitchener, who was part of the stolen generation. Suzy has personal experience living with disability and as a carer for a person with disability. Suzy has been painting with her mother since she was 14. Suzy represented Australia at the United Nations Headquarters in New York in 2016. Suzy was a member of the Disabled People’s Organisations Australia delegation to the 9th Session of the Conference of States Parties (COSP) to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD).
Suzy’s use of vibrant colours and positive stories reflects her optimism in life and her ability to look at the positives.
Suzy feels that her painting “keeps her strong in spirit and culture and plays a huge part in building her resilience and recovery.”

Photo courtesy of Jon Coghill (ABC)

Lester Bostock

Board Member

Lester Bostock is a Bundjalung man with disability who has been at the forefront of promoting and protecting the human rights of Aboriginal people with disability in Australia over several decades.
Lester publicly introduced the concept of “double disadvantage” and how it relates to Aboriginal people with disability in 1991 when he gave the Meares Oration entitled Access and equity for people with a double disadvantage.
Lester is widely recognised as one of the pioneers of Aboriginal media in Australia.
Lester has received numerous awards for community service over the years including a Centenary Medal, the NSW Law and Justice Foundation Award for Aboriginal Justice and in 2010 Uncle Lester was the NAIDOC Elder of the Year.

Jane Rosengrave

Board Member

Jane Rosengrave is a proud Aboriginal woman and disability advocate. Jane lives with an intellectual disability and is widely respected for her fearless advocacy regarding violence against people with disability. Jane has given evidence at the Royal Commission into Institutional responses to Child Sexual Abuse, and supported others to give evidence too. Jane lived in institutions from six months old, in conditions she describes as “like a jail”. From the age of six until she turned 21, she experienced sexual abuse and emotional torment by more than one perpetrator. After leaving the institution as an adult, she went on to live in an abusive relationship for 16 years. She now has a home of her own and is “free as a bird” from those who impacted on her earlier life. Jane is a sought after public speaker and often appears in the media. Jane joined the FPDN Board in 2016 and is also on the Board of People with Disability Australia.

Damian Griffis

Board Member

Damian Griffis is a Worimi man and a leading advocate for the human rights of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people with disability. Damian has been a central figure in the establishment of both the Aboriginal Disability Network NSW and FPDN. Damian represents FPDN at regional, national and international forums. In 2014, he won the Tony Fitzgerald (Community Individual) Memorial Award at the Australian Human Rights Awards.

Kay Sadler

Board Member

Kay Sadler is a Worimi woman of the Biripi nation born on the Pacific Highway, ten kilometres south of Taree.
Kay is a delegate to the National Congress of Australia’s First Peoples and a member of the Biripi Land Council. She holds a Diploma of Business (Governance) from Tranby Aboriginal College.

Maureen Logan

Board Member

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Our Staff

Damian Griffis

CEO

June Riemer

Deputy CEO

Lai Ha Wu

CFO

Sara Irvine

Communications Director

Donna Fraser

SA Community Connector

Lisa Hindman

National Project Coordinator

Michelle Bates

NT – Barkly Community Connector

Wendy Wright

WA – Perth Community Connector

Tracy Barrell

NSW – Northern Rivers Community Connector

Tania Lewis

NSW – Hunter Community Connector

Ben Riemer

Administration and Communications Officer

Melanie Marne

NSW – Community Connector

Scott Avery

Research and Policy Director

Paul Calcott

National Projects Manager

Jake Briggs

NSW Project & Business Development Manager

Friends of FPDN

Join the First Peoples Disability Movement. Add your voice and sign up as friend of FPDN. Friends will receive updates about our work and have opportunities to get involved and speak up.

First Peoples Disability Network Australia is a national organisation of and for Australiaís First Peoples with disability, their families and communities. Our founders are the leaders of the Aboriginal disability movement and in order to continue their legacy we want to ensure that as many people as possible have the opportunity to connect and communicate with us, and each other.

FPDNís purpose is to promote respect for human rights, secure social justice, and empower First Peoples with disability to participate in Australian society on an equal basis with others.

Become a Friend of FPDN:

Sign up to our newsletter
and stay informed!


ELDA – Elders Living with Disability Australia

FPDN is an organisation of and for First People with disability. We take pride in our culture, our communities and our history. Our Elders with lived experience of disability are the holders of knowledge and wisdom. We are proud to work with a number of Elders and our organisation benefits from the guidance and advice.

As part of our Strategic Directions 2015-2020 FPDN is working to build its Eldersí Council, known as ELDA. ELDA ( Elders living with disability Australia) is a national advisory group of Elders with a lived experience in disability, who conduct disability business. ELDA currently has representatives from NSW, NT, QLD, TI and SA.