Thursday 9 Sep 2021


5.00 - 7.00 pm


time start

Panel – Yarning around the fire: The Australian First Nations traditional
method for not knowing and coming to know

Ray Minniecon, Mishel McMahon and Terri Marsden are indigenous Australians who are leaders in the sectors of finance and banking, Aussie Rules Football, Maternal and Child Health, and community ministry.

Their stories (yarns) can only be understood and appreciated in the context of the Australian Indigenous ways of knowing. The presenters are the windows into being, of time, place, animate and inanimate, dreamtime, songlines and moieties. They will offer an experience of learning through yarning. The method of seeking to understand, not to reply, as a respectful mode for learning. Seeking to Be curious, be present, and to re-imagine.

Join us as we “walk backwards into the future”.

Ms Terri Marsden

Ms Terri Marsden

Financial Capability Assistance, Gippsland Bushfire Recovery, Good Shepard, Australia

Senior Leadership professional with substantial experience in leading, building and motivating high performing teams and cultures. Career Banker with a diverse background in Lending, Operations, Contract Centres and Project Management. My qualifications include a Master Degree in Applied Science (Organisation Dynamics) from RMIT, ANZ Bank Six Sigma Black Belt in LEAN, Certificate IV in Project Management, Diploma of Business (Banking and Finance).

I grew up in Sydney, my culture being Yuin and country the beautiful NSW south coast, I now live in regional Victoria. I promote and lead community involvement, holding a past volunteer Directorship for nine years on the Board of ‘The Long Walk’ charity established by Michael Long to build awareness of Indigenous Australian issues. I am a current SES volunteer, with the Leongatha unit as Deputy Controller – Members.

Dr Mishel McMahon

Dr Mishel McMahon

Co-ordinator Victorian Aboriginal Accord Project, Victorian Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation

Mishel McMahon is a proud Yorta Yorta woman, she grew up in a large family in the Murray river region. Mishel completed her undergraduate degree of Bachelor of Human Services and Honours in Social Work in 2012 at La Trobe. Mishel has worked at various First Nations organisations, including Indigenous Academic Enrichment Advisor at La Trobe organising Sorry Day and NAIDOC events. Mishel began her PhD, undertaking research that revealed principles of First Nations Relational ontology and childrearing, using Aboriginal methodology, and Yorta Yorta language.

Mishel recently won Premier’s Research Awards for Aboriginal Research 2019, Fellowship for Indigenous Leadership 2019 and recently worked as Social Work lecturer at Shepparton La Trobe, campus. Mishel is in the last stages of developing a First Nations Health & Wellbeing mobile app, and shorts films from her Fellowship.

Currently, Mishel is Victorian Aboriginal Research Accord Co-ordinator at VACCHO and lives in Elmore on Yakoa river in central Victoria. Mishel writes short stories influenced by the genre of Aboriginal teaching stories and has exhibited her poetry and photography in Bendigo NAIDOC Art Exhibitions, Dudley House.

Pastor Ray Minniecon

Pastor Ray Minniecon

Elder Indigenous statesman, Australia

Ray Minniecon is a descendant of the Kabi Kabi nation and the Gurang Gurang nation of South-East Queensland. Ray is also a descendant of the South Sea Islander people with connections to the people of Ambrym Island.

Ray is the former CEO of Kinchela Boys Home Aboriginal Corporation and the Former National Director of the Indigenous work of World Vision a role he held for six years. Ray was instrumental in the partnership with annecto that saw the first Federal Aged Care Packages accessible for the Aboriginal Community in Australia
Ray has spoken about indigenous issues at local, national and international forums. In 1995 he made an intervention at the UN in Geneva on behalf of Indigenous Peoples at the first hearing of the Draft Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.

In 2001, he spoke in Italy at a Global Forum on Ethics and Economics, where he also had a private audience with the Pope.
Ray is currently a Director of Bunji Consultancies, which supports Aboriginal leadership and business initiatives with a number of corporate clients and is a consultant on the development of programs and projects for the remaining Stolen Generation communities with the University of New South Wales.


120 minutes








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Not Knowing and Coming to Know Panel Panelist


Not Knowing and Coming to Know panel


Not Knowing and Coming to Know Panel


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