Our Academy Leadership Team
Professor Adrian Miller
Deputy Vice-President Indigenous Engagement and Academy Director
Professor Adrian Miller is the Deputy Vice-President Indigenous Engagement, BHP Chair in Indigenous Engagement and Director of the Jawun Research Centre at Central Queensland University. During the past 25 years in higher education, he has demonstrated excellence in management, leadership, academic program development, teaching and research. This wealth of experience stands him in good stead to provide strategic leadership and vision to the management and growth of the First Nations RHD Academy.
He is an established Public Health scholar and is known nationally and internationally for his research and leadership in Indigenous and environmental health, infectious diseases, higher education and immunology. Professor Miller has won $26M in grants in his career to date and is a recognised expert with the Academy of Sciences. His recent national and international publications and outcomes have influenced national and state policies, in particular, national pandemic planning. Additionally, he is currently an associate supervisor to three PhD students and mentor to two PhD students.
His passion for achieving collaborative outcomes for Indigenous communities and mentoring Indigenous leadership in Academia has seen his vision for an Indigenous RHD Academy to be established at CQUniversity.
Dr Vicki Saunders
Academy Lead Student Mentor
Dr Vicki Saunders (BPsych, MPH, PhD) is a Gunggari woman with connections to the Maranoa region of Southern Central Queensland. She is currently Research Fellow with the Jawun Research Centre, Central Queensland University and the Centre for Research Excellence-Strengthening Systems for Indigenous health care Equity (CRE-STRIDE); and Adjunct Research Associate with Griffith University Queensland Conservatorium Research Centre.
Vicki is the Academy Lead Mentor for First Nations RHD candidates and is responsible for the support and mentoring of candidates and working with the Academy coordinator to deliver key performance indicators.
She brings expertise in building research capacity, public health research and arts-based Indigenist and poetic inquiry. Dr Saunders is also a member of the Maya Kawayu Indigenous data governance committee (ANU) and a member of the Muliyan research consortium, which is a community of independent academics/educational researchers working with the Congress of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nurses and Midwives. With an extensive background in social emotional wellbeing, psychology and public health research, she has been involved in a range of creative health and wellbeing research projects with Indigenous and community-based organisations.
Professor Jenni Judd
Professor Health Promotion
Professor Jenni Judd is the Academy Lead Mentor for Supervisors of First Nations RHD candidates and is responsible for their support and and capacity building to be able to supervise First Nations RHD candidates well.
Jenni is an experienced mentor supervisor who has completed 15 HDR students- 11 PhDs, 1 DPH, and 3 Masters research degrees. She currently supervises 8 PhD, 1 Doctor of Education, 4 Masters Research. She has extensive experience in facilitating Cohort models for HDR students. Five years were with Indigenous HDR students in the Building Indigenous Research Capacity NHMRC grant as the Senior Research Fellow and three with the Doctoral Cohort studies program as the Principal Research Fellow. Jenni is an applied qualitative researcher with interests in Indigenous Health and Education, Health Services, Health Promotion, Capacity building, Emerging Infectious Diseases, and rural and remote health. She had over 28 years of Industry experience in Education and Health in the Northern Territory and has been successful in over $5m in Cat 1 and 2 grants. Jenni is passionate about recruiting, retaining and completing HDR students who flourish and learn from their research studies.
Dr Lorraine Tulele
Dr Lorraine Tulele (BA,MHR, PHD) is the First Nations Research Higher Degree (RHD) Academy coordinator at CQUniversity and a full member of the Jawun Research Centre. She is responsible for the day to day running of the Academy, including but not limited to planning, logistics, training, mentoring, and supporting First Nations RHD candidates. In her role, Lorraine ensures that First Nations RHD students are provided with relevant academic, cultural, pastoral, financial, publication, resource, and systems support to achieve required milestones and complete their studies.
Lorraine’s background is in History/Politics and Human Resource Management/Employment Relations. For the past 23 years, she has gained expertise in working as a human resource practitioner in the industry; and worked in Australian and International Universities as a tutor, research assistant, project officer, coordinator, and lecturer, teaching courses such as human resource management, employment relations, organisational behaviour, and change management and conducting research in Indigenous training and employment. Lorraine supervises two PhD students and one master of research student at an associate supervisor level.
She is currently studying for a Master of Social Work as she advocates for social justice and human rights, given her low socioeconomic background. Lorraine’s values are congruent with the social work values. She strives to practice a critical social work approach with a strong interest in strength-based research and participatory action research. Lorraine has strong leadership experience and a great passion for achieving outcomes in First Nations-focused education, training, and employment; social change that promotes democracy; social justice; and challenging social inequities.
Marina Mikecz is the Executive Officer, Office of Indigenous Engagement (OIE), providing advisory, analytical and support services to Professor Adrian Miller and the OIE staff. She collaborates with internal and external stakeholders on OIE projects, prepares reports, submissions and business cases and identifies and advises on policy and procedures relevant to the Office of Indigenous Engagement and the wider University. She is a member of the RHD Academy leadership group using her 25 years of experience working in community development, human resources, and partnerships and engagement with Indigenous organisations and communities.
Marina holds a Master in International Community Development from Deakin University and is currently studying a Diploma of Sustainable Living with the University of Tasmania. Her work is informed by a strengths-based approach and her research focuses on Indigenous education.