To celebrate the great work that Sisters Inside does, and the great work that women do for themselves, we’ve made a lil list of fab Indigenous women. From sport to academia, fashion to environmental sustainability and management, The pompom zine extends a big flippin’ HIP HIP HORRAY to this (very short) shortlist.
ANITA HEISS- poet, author & social commentator
Anita grew up in the eastern suburbs of Sydney, Matraville. Her mother was born on Erambie Mission Cowra – Wiradjuri country and her father was from Austria. She grew up seeing movies at the Drive-in her mother worked at, working at a chicken shop and a deparment store, going to school, and feeling the love in what she describes as ‘a very family oriented’ environment. Later, she attended Western Sydney University, set up her own social research/media/PR business and completed her PhD. She then became a resident writer at Macquarie Uni in 2004 and is now a full-time writer! Her work breaks down indigenous and female oriented stereotypes through poetry and social critique. It is her tender articulation and fierce curiosity that PPZ believes makes her so RAD and so WONDERFUL.
Read some of Anita’s work here.
SAMATHA HARRIS- fashion model, young women’s fashion ambassador for David Jones
Our first memories with Samantha herald right back to 2001, when she won Dolly Magazine’s “Covergirl” competition. She was only eleven and living in Tweed Heads, NSW. In 2010, she walked in a record number of shows at Australian Fashion Week and appeared in a Miu Miu collection photo shoot the same year. Her work in the fashion industry has encouraged it to tailor itself. It can no longer be a space only for white women and for white men. The inclusiveness that comes with Indigenous representation in the arts, and particularly in fashion, an industry we all consume, propels Samantha into a position of ambassadorship. Her presence is the presence of so many Indigenous Australian girls yet to be celebrated in mainstream media. So for that, PPZ salutes you, Samantha!!
Check out her pompom perfect Miu Miu shoot here.
CARLA MCGRATH- voice for sustainable development and growth
Carla, oh Carla, how we love your work! As a Member of the Board of Directors at Shared Path Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Corporation in Sydney, Carla works to enable sustainable enterprises for Indigenous business plans. The nonprofit organisation is a ‘social enterprise that aims to incubate Indigenous entrepreneurial talent and business skills’. They develop ‘small enterprises and micro businesses to use as training grounds for Indigenous People to develop their own capacity and their own enterprises’. Well if that isn’t something PPZ can get behind, then what is? Snaps for Carla!
Learn more about her work here.
MARCIA ELLA-DUNCAN – the first Aboriginal scholarship recipient at the Australian Instistute of Sport
High-five for fitness! Marcia grew up watching her older sisters play netball. The sport was all around her in her hometown of La Perouse in Sydney. After playing and loving the sport in her girlhood and teen years, Marcia was the first Aboriginal scholarship holder at the Australian Institute of Sport, and the first Aboriginal women selected to play in the Australian team. Since then, she has received an Order of Australia Medal for her services to netball and is incredibly involved with sporting opportunities for Aboriginal children. Marcia, you are RAD and you are WONDERFUL!
Learn more about her here.
What an incredible snapshot of Indigenous and femme talent! Keep your peepers prepped for more on Australia’s amazing Indigenous women and the amazing work of Sisters Inside.
Luv ‘n’ poms,