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Female Leadership network—

Kirsty Broderick

One woman who is part of the Stories of Female

Leadership forum is Kirsty Broderick, Deputy CEO

of the Cape York Land Council. Kirsty was also

connected by Jawun to Chief Executive Women,

a development initiative based on the related

principle of ‘women leaders enabling women

leaders’. Explaining why and how these interrelated

opportunities are so valuable, Kirsty says:

I am the only female in the management group of

the Cape York Land Council. It’s lonely at times—

challenging norms, attitudes and the ‘usual way

of doing business’ in a male-dominated space.

I did have a small network of like-minded females,

but this opportunity provided by Jawun extended

that more than I could ever have imagined.

I am now part of a network of strong women who

support each other through professional and

personal achievements as well as hurdles.

The strength of these networks is life changing.

They support and encourage you when you are in

doubt, and are your cheerleaders to remind you

of how far you have come.

I now feel a responsibility to ensure that such

opportunities are extended to other women.

I am stronger now than I have ever been.

Kirsty Broderick.

Photo: Caden Pearson

In 2017, Jawun drew on inputs from across the

network, and from a small design team of Indigenous

and non-Indigenous women, to plan a much larger

gathering. This will be held towards the end of

2017 at the site of Jawun’s beginning: Mossman

Gorge, Cape York. KPMG’s U-Collaborate team, who

supported Stories of Female Leadership throughout,

worked with the design team on a gathering that

would tease out how this unique network would

serve its purpose. Female traditional owners from

Mossman Gorge designed an enriching cultural

experience combining art, guided walks and

storytelling. These women gave the network a name

in their Kuku Yalanji language:

Jalbu jalbu

. Literally,

these words are the plural for women. Symbolically,

they stand for the power of women brought together.

Stories of Female Leadership began on the basis that

many Indigenous women find leadership demanding,

thankless and unguided, while also feeling compelled

and motivated to step into it. Events held since

it began have revealed, first, that this is not their

challenge alone; and second, that connecting with

other women can be a vital source of support,

solutions and succession planning. This unique

network of women is a powerful and exciting group

to watch.