Poche Key Thinkers Forum

A new initiative, the Poche Key Thinkers Forum, will meet three times each year. It will include experts, policy makers, community members and practitioners.

Attendees will receive a paper in advance of each meeting, providing background to a research, policy or practice question. At the conclusion of each forum the centre will produce a paper that summarises the issues raised, and makes comment or presents an opinion about the topic discussed. This will be published as a 'Poche Opinion'.

Poche Opinions will be a tool to contribute to knowledge and to draw the wider community into the key debates and issues in Aboriginal health. Participation in the Key Thinkers Forum will be by invitation.

Dates for the Key Thinkers Forum

First Key Thinkers Forum- Wednesday 3 July 2013, 10.00am-2.00pm
Second Key Thinkers Forum- Friday 15 November 2013, 8.45am-12.45pm

Agenda for Key Thinkers Forum

See the agenda for the second Poche Key Thinkers forum here.

Briefing papers for Poche Key Thinkers Forum

Download the briefing paper for the first Poche Key Thinkers forum here.

Download the briefing paper for the second Poche Key Thinkers forum here.

Chair of the Poche Key Thinkers Forum

Dr Tom Calma AO

Dr Tom Calma AO

Dr Calma is an Aboriginal elder from the Kungarakan tribal group and a member of the Iwaidja tribal group in the NT. He has been involved in Indigenous affairs at a local, community, state, national and international level and worked in the public sector for 40 years and is currently on a number of boards and committees focusing on rural and remote Australia, health, education, justice reinvestment and economic development.

Dr Calma, a consultant, is the National Coordinator, Tackling Indigenous Smoking where he leads the establishment and mentoring of 57 teams nationally to fight tobacco use by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

Dr Calma's most recent previous position was that of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Social Justice Commissioner at the Australian Human Rights Commission from 2004 to 2010. He also served as Race Discrimination Commissioner from 2004 until 2009.

Through his 2005 Social Justice Report, Dr Calma called for the life expectancy gap between Indigenous and non-Indigenous people to be closed within a generation and laid the groundwork for the Close the Gap campaign. The Close the Gap campaign has effectively brought national attention to achieving health equality for Indigenous people by 2030.

Dr Calma is a strong advocate for Indigenous rights and empowerment and has spearheaded initiatives including the establishment of the National Congress of Australia's First Peoples and Justice Reinvestment.

In 2010, Dr Calma was awarded an honorary doctor of letters from Charles Darwin University and in 2011, an honorary doctor of science from Curtin University.

In the Queen's Birthday 2012 Honours Awards Dr Calma was awarded an Order of Australia; Officer of the General Division (AO) and in December 2012 he was announced as the ACT Australian of the Year 2013.