Young guard of Wik leaders for Aurukun  

[by Liz Inglis]


Mayor Tamwoy with Councillors. Image: supplied

A young guard of Wik leaders spearheaded by new Mayor Keri Tamwoy were sworn in to their roles at Aurukun Shire Council recently.


Mayor Tamwoy follows proudly in the footsteps of her late mother Alison Woolla, a dynamic reform leader and first female to serve as Mayor of Aurukun from 1983 to 1985 and 1991 to 1994.

“My Mum was a mayor for the people and the community who always had the whole community’s aspirations and needs at heart and this is what I want to take into my service for my people,” she said.

Of the Putch Clan, Mayor Tamwoy, 45, has lived her entire life in her hometown, where she has raised her six children with husband Gerald, and feels privileged to have three grandchildren with two living in Aurukun. 

Mayor Tamwoy’s strong leadership and dedication to her community was recognised when she was appointed as a local Family Responsibilities Commissioner in 2019.


She is qualified mediator who heads the community’s mediation agency Thaa’ Pant Services, and chairs a community land management organisation Aak Puul Ngantam (APN Cape York).


Mayor Tamwoy delivers cultural awareness training to mining companies and has a background in administration with roles at APN Cape York and in her husband’s machinery hire business.

New councillors Craig Koomeeta, Kempo Tamwoy, Anna Kerindun and Delys Yunkaporta all live and work in Aurukun.

“I am very excited to have an enthusiastic and dedicated team joining me and look forward to building strategies together that will bring about the change that the community wants,” Mayor Tamwoy said.

“My goal is to help restore peace in Aurukun and build a positive future for our young people to strive for.

“Law and order is a major challenge and I want Council to make this a priority, to support whole of community strategies like mediation and addressing the home brew problem.

“Housing, overcrowding, is an ongoing issue and I will be advocating for the outstations to be opened so people who wish to live out on country can make it their primary place of residence.”


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