PROFESSOR Pat Dudgeon (pictured), the first indigenous psychologist to graduate in Australia and one of the first Mental Health Commissioners in the country, has been shortlisted for the 2015 Human Rights Medal.
She has been shortlisted along with Muslim leader and anti-domestic violence campaigner Maha Krayem Abdo, marriage equality crusader Rodney Croome, anti-racism advocate Adam Goodes and journalist and freedom of speech advocate Peter Greste.
Australian Human Rights Commission president Professor Gillian Triggs said they were “exceptional and inspiring individuals”.
“These five outstanding Australians have come from different walks of life but they share a commitment to freedom, justice and equality,” Prof Triggs said.
She said Prof Dudgeon, who hails from Broome and has Bardi ancestors in the Kimberley, had made a significant contribution to promoting and enhancing the mental health and human rights of Aboriginal Australians.
“Professor Dudgeon is the project leader of the National Empowerment Project, an indigenous suicide prevention project working with 11 Aboriginal communities across the country,” Prof Triggs said.
“She has conducted exemplary research aimed at improving outcomes for indigenous Australians and is one of the first Mental Health Commissioners in Australia.
“The Human Rights Commissioner especially commends Professor Dudgeon for her work on suicide prevention in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities around Australia.”
The awards will be presented on December 10.