Graphic: Dwayne Mallard
The WA Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS) proudly welcomed our newest board member Dwayne Mallard to our Jandakot base during NAIDOC Week.
Dwayne is a Wajarri-Nanda, Yamatji man and is the first Indigenous Board Director to join the RFDS in Western Australia.
Born and raised in Carnarvon, Dwayne currently spends the majority of his time between Perth, his homeland remote Communities of Pia Wadjarri in the Murchison, Burringurrah in the Upper Gascoyne, and as often as he can, his hometown of Carnarvon visiting his family and friends.
Dwayne has a deep appreciation for how integral the RFDS is to the livelihoods, wellbeing and sustainability of regional and remote communities.
Dwayne is the Founder and Managing Director of Arjaway (Aboriginal word for ‘other way’), a social enterprise aimed at creating social alchemy through the collective impact of enhancing individual, family and social function.
He has worked across government, corporate and community sectors, ranging from child protection casework, community projects and engagement for remote Aboriginal communities.
He has broad experience as a negotiator and has served as Chairperson for his Native Title the Wajarri Yamatji Claim, Wajarri Enterprises Limited and Wajarri Yamatji Aboriginal Corporation.
Dwayne also brought together and chaired the Yamatji Region COVID-19 Emergency Response Taskforce in 2020 and is currently a lead negotiator in the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) Radio Astronomy Indigenous Land Use Agreement (ILUA).
He is also an inaugural member of RUOK?’s National Indigenous Advisory Group’s ‘Stronger Together’ campaign.
Graphic: Dwayne inside jet
Dwayne said he feels honored to be in a position where he can contribute in a meaningful way.
“Culturally, I’m born into a responsibility and obligation to preserve, protect and restore dignity of culture, people and land and I’ve done that through all aspects of my life,” he said.
“The RFDS is an organisation that is totally aligned with those values so I couldn’t think of a better organisation to be involved with.
“The RFDS is an absolute lifeline for any Western Australian living regional and remote. When you’re faced with a medical crisis, the RFDS provides genuine hope that you are in safe and reliable hands.
“Access to primary healthcare services in remote and regional areas of Western Australia and the RFDS’ role in that space is something I want to learn more about and how I can play a role by sharing insights around lived experience and realities in remote communities.”
Graphic: Dwayne at Jandakot
While at Jandakot this week, Dwayne was accompanied by RFDS WA Interim CEO Dr Kieran Hennelly, Head of Community Rebecca Maddern and Engineering Manager Andy Lewis as he toured the hangars where the service’s aircraft fleet are maintained.
“Everyone that I’ve met here overwhelmingly enjoys being here and being a part of the organisation,” he said.
“The scale of the RFDS operation in Western Australia is just amazing, running its own aviation and engineering department, flight scheduling, emergency department and administration.
“From the board to staff, there is a genuine feel within the organisation that we’re part of something special. Every aspect of the operation is based on excellence.”