UQ appoints first Reconciliation Action Coordinator

23 March 2019

The director of the Australian literature and storytelling history database AustLit has been appointed as the first Reconciliation Action Coordinator for The University of Queensland’s Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences.

Kerry Kilner, who is also a UQ Research Fellow in the School of Communication and Arts, said she would bring her passion for engagement, and teaching and learning to the new role.

“It’s an honour to be participating in progressing UQ’s Reconciliation Action Plan, using the existing projects and activities within HASS as a springboard,” Ms Kilner said.

“I am excited about seeing the growth of connectivity between First Nations and non-Indigenous Australians through acts of reconciliation and understanding.

“I see this position of Reconciliation Action Coordinator as a trailblazing one and I hope it will proliferate throughout the University.

“I’m looking forward to working with others across the University as we deliver the actions and plans within the RAP.”

Ms Kilner has been coordinating AustLit’s BlackWords project – a unique authority on writing and storytelling in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures – since it was established in 2006.

UQ’s Humanities and Social Sciences Executive Dean Professor Heather Zwicker has worked with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies Unit to create and champion the valuable position.

“Reconciliation and other forms of decolonisation are important for the future of the humanities and social sciences at UQ,” Professor Zwicker said.

“In light of the current environment, and especially with UQ’s first Reconciliation Action Plan launched late last year, we need to devote even more energy to the Indigenous portfolio.

Kerry will be developing effective representation for Indigenous engagement across the Faculty, as well as implement our contribution to UQ RAP.”

In 2018 UQ launched its inaugural RAP which acknowledged the University’s commitment to the building of respectful relationships and opportunities between Aboriginal, Torres Strait Islander and non-Indigenous peoples.

(story courtesy UQ News)