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 Galarrwuy Yunupingu

Galarrwuy Yunupingu

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James Galarrwuy Yunupingu A.M. — Born at Melville bay near Yirrkala (Gove Peninsula - East Arnhem Land) on 30 June 1948. Galarrwuy attended Mission School at Yirrkala in his formative years and moved to Brisbane to study at the Methodist Bible College for two years, returning to Gove in 1967. In he early 1960’s with his father Mungurrawuy the Gumatj clan leader, he entered the struggle for Land Rights for their people. Since his father’s death in 1979, Galarrwuy has become a very prominent leader and strong voice on behalf of Aboriginal people in the Northern Territory of Australia, gaining respect and admiration from many. In 1975 he joined the Northern Land Council in its interim period, and became Chairman in 1977, a position he held until 1980, when he returned to Yirrkala to look after the family business. He continued to hold an executive position on the Northern Land Council during this period and was re-elected to Chairman in 1983, 1986, 1989, 1992 and again in October 1995. In 1978 he was honoured as Australian of the Year and in January 1985 awarded the Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his services to the Aboriginal community. Galarrwuy has held and continues to hold numerous positions on committees and organisations where he can share his wide experience with other Australians and promote the aspirations of his people.