Honour roll

Past Award Finalists and Recipients

Australia's Local Hero

State Finalist

Date of birth: 14 August 1968
Town: Matraville
State: New South Wales

State Finalist Australia's Local Hero 2013

Dr Anita Heiss

Writer and educator

Respected author, poet, academic and educator, Dr Anita Heiss is a passionate advocate for Indigenous literacy, Indigenous rights and reconciliation. In 2001, she became the first Aboriginal person to complete a doctorate at the University of Western Sydney and since then has held senior academic posts and recently published a new book, Am I Black Enough for You. Her vision is to educate Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians about the complexities of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander history and cultures. A passionate advocate for books and literacy, she regularly runs workshops at schools around the country and has worked closely with the La Perouse community to create books to capture the imagination of all children – Indigenous and non-Indigenous. She believes that while it is important that children understand that we come from diverse nations within one nation, it is also important for them to know we are all human and share the same human emotions. An extraordinary role model, she has also long advocated for the inclusion of a compulsory Indigenous studies unit in the national curriculum. 

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