Full Members

Adrian Miller

Professor Adrian Miller

Professor Miller is of the Jirrbal people of North Queensland and is the Deputy Vice President Indigenous Engagement and BHP Chair in Indigenous Engagement at CQUniversity Australia. His previous appointment was Pro Vice-Chancellor Indigenous Leadership at Charles Darwin University. Other previous positions include Academic Director of Indigenous Education and Research and Professor of Indigenous Research at Griffith University, Professor and Head of School at Southern Cross University, Founding Head of the Department of Indigenous Studies at Macquarie University and Deputy Head of School at James Cook University. During the past 24 years in higher education, his experience has been in management, leadership, academic program development, teaching and research. He has a research track record in competitive grants with both the Australian Research Council and National Health and Medical Research Council grant schemes totalling around $20M. He has a strong interest in applied research and twice been awarded the Australian College of Educators Teaching Award. Professor Miller has strong leadership experience and proven capacity for achieving positive outcomes for Indigenous communities in health and education.

Janya McCalman

Professor Janya McCalman

Professor Janya McCalman is a Professorial Research Fellow in Indigenous Health at CQUniversity. She is internationally recognised for her extensive research on the interactions between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians with schools, workplaces, health services and other community contexts which enable resilience, empowerment and wellbeing. She is recognised for her diverse multi-method research with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders partners over the last 15 years, including in Aboriginal mental health, social and emotional wellbeing, youth health, maternal and child health, health services research and implementation research. She has led systematic literature reviews, participatory action research, grounded theory and impact evaluation research projects which seek to inform improvements in resilience, empowerment-based health and wellbeing and the implementation of health programs and services. Her PhD was conferral in 2013; for this, she won the Dean’s Award for Research Higher Degree Excellence.  She supervises and mentors several Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal research students.  Given she is at an early career stage, her ability to report and publish research is prolific; outputs include 43 peer-review papers; 1 book, 4 book chapters; 22 other publications; and 31 conference presentations. She has been successful as Lead/Chief Investigator on 16 grants, including two fellowships and three competitive grants (NHMRC ID: APP1076774; NHMRC 1078927; ARC IN150100011); contributing to $9.7m funding. She has received JCU performance awards for external income and publication outputs. She has also contributed to the design and facilitation of training workshops with international mental health leaders.

Tessa Benveniste

Dr Tessa Benveniste

Dr Tessa Benveniste is a Senior Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the Centre for Indigenous Health Equity Research at CQUniversity. She completed a PhD at the Appleton Institute for Behavioural Science, in conjunction with the CRC for Remote Economic Participation (Remote Education Systems). Her doctoral research was focused on the expectations, experiences and outcomes of boarding school for remote Central Australian Aboriginal students. Following this, Tessa joined the Centre for Indigenous Health Equity Research as the Project Manager of a National Health and Medical Research Council funded study investigating resilience and wellbeing of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander boarding school students. Her Postdoctoral fellowship will continue to work to improve the cultural safety and wellbeing of boarding students across Australia while expanding her experience in health and community-driven research.

Ms Tina McDonald

Tina McDonald is a highly experienced project manager with exceptional partnership development, Indigenous engagement experience and leadership and collaborative skills. Tina is a Senior Research Officer with CIHER at CQUniversity and is the project manager for the NHMRC Systems Integration project. Tina is results orientated and solution focussed with expertise in end-to-end project design, delivery, management, contractual and ethical compliance, reporting and evaluation; specialising in strengths-based and human-centred programs for not-for-profit, community and research organisations. Tina has exemplary cross-cultural skills developed through qualifications and experience in psychology, education and communications and extensive work with peoples from diverse cultures, domestically and internationally and across remote locations. She has worked in fields of education, international relations, community development and Indigenous health and wellbeing; in advocacy, research, community centred
programs addressing health, wellbeing, social inclusion and equity.

Chris Doran

Professor Chris Doran

Professor Chris Doran holds a Bachelor of Economics (Honours), a PhD in Health Economics and is a recent graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. His main area of research is mental health with a focus on substance use and suicidal behaviour. Prof Doran’s research has contributed to the field of health economics and strengthened the evidence base for effective policy action. In recent years, his focus on priority setting has been complemented with the development of tools and frameworks to facilitate translational research. His translational research has contributed to the development, implementation and evaluation of national and international substance abuse and mental health policies. A major strength of Prof Doran’s research is the network of collaborations he has established. Evidenced by his research output, Prof Doran has collaborated extensively with academics, consumer groups, practitioners and policymakers in building capacity in the knowledge, use and translation of health economics. Due to his globally recognised research into the health economics of mental health and substance abuse, he has developed strong links with the World Health Organisation and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, leading to invited presentations, collaborative manuscripts, commissioned research and a sabbatical placement with the World Health Organisation in Geneva. His research projects are multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional with a strong focus on collaboration and capacity building. For example, as CI on APP351558, he worked closely with members of the steering and advisory committees representing 5 universities, state and federal government organisations, non-government organisations, community and Indigenous experts and the World Health Organisation.

Jenni Judd

Professor Jenni Judd

Professor Jenni Judd's career focus is to contribute to the improvement of health and educational outcomes for the Australian population including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and Cultural and Linguistically Diverse peoples. She has extensive practical and applied research experience in a broad range of environments including urban, rural, tropical and remote Indigenous communities and with health care providers in the NT, WA, QLD and NSW. Her research has focused on capacity building and changing practice and policy in mental health, chronic disease management, health promotion and public health practice in Primary Health care providers, pandemic influenza, Hendra virus risks and equine vets, and Strongyloidiasis in Indigenous communities. Much of Prof Judd's health and education experience was in the Northern Territory in tropical urban, rural and remote settings and has broadened to research with Aboriginal Medical Services and communities in NT, QLD, WA and northern NSW. From 1992-2007 she worked in health promotion, policy development, research, evaluation and training, management of health promotion and public health services, and as an applied researcher. Prof Judd is acknowledged nationally and internationally for her leadership in health promotion and Indigenous health. This is evidenced by her leadership in the Australian Health Promotion Association and from working in partnership with Indigenous practitioners in the International Network of Indigenous Health Promotion Professionals (INIHPP). Prof Judd has contributed to the co-ordination of Indigenous workshops at the Annual Australian Health Promotion conferences since 2008, the Population Health Congresses (2008 and 2020), and the International Union of Health Promotion and Education Conferences in 1997.

Ms Erika Langham

Erika Langham is a Lecturer in Health Promotion and a researcher in the Centre for Indigenous Health Equity Research at CQUniversity. Erika has over 20 years of experience in managing and leading complex research projects on sensitive topics. Since moving to academia in 2012 she has been a co-researcher on twenty successful competitive research grant applications, including projects developing the first summary measures of gambling-related harm and an Australian National Organisation for Womens Safety grant investigating the intersection between gambling and domestic violence. She is a mixed-methods researcher, and has undertaken gambling research centred on the experience of harm from gambling; the influence of jackpots on EGM play; the influence of gambling environments; the potential impact of responsible gambling features; the impact of innovation of gambling products; and the development of a scale to measure the effect of stigma associated with gambling. Her other research interests include Social and Emotional Wellbeing of Indigenous Youth and the impact of social inclusion on health outcomes.

Sarah Blunden

Professor Sarah Blunden

Professor Sarah Blunden (MAPS, BAPsych (Hons), MSocSc, PhD) has a dual role as Head of Paediatric Sleep Research and Lecturer in Clinical Psychology at CQUniversity Australia and is a clinical psychologist specialising in the treatment of children’s sleep problems. Sarah is the Founder/Director of the Paediatric Sleep Clinic, Director of the Australian Centre for Education in Sleep© (ACES) and member of the Education Committee, Behavioural Sleep Medicine subcommittee and chair of the Indigenous Sleep Health Special Interest group, all of the Australasian Sleep Association. Her research interests include sleep education, indigenous sleep and health, sleep interventions for young children, the impact of poor sleep, on children and families and the causes of poor sleep in children and young people with an emerging interest in multi-disciplinary teaching practices for psychology. Sarah has presented over 70 conference presentations and published over 100 academic papers and books.

Jenny Kelly

Dr Jenny Kelly

Dr Jenny Kelly has a diverse professional background with qualifications and experience in nursing, midwifery, adult education, women's studies and public health. She has spent most of her professional life in northern Australia where she has worked as a remote area nurse/midwife and public health professional. Her diverse qualifications and professional experience are evidence of her commitment to improving health outcomes particularly for marginalised and under-served population groups.

Ann Sardesai

Ms Ann Sardesai

Ann Sardesai worked as a Commercial Analyst with Caterpillar for over 8 years prior to joining academia in 2008. She has worked with Macquarie University, University of Sydney and Western Sydney University. After completing her PhD in 2014, Ann joined CQUniversity in January 2015 and teaches Management Accounting within the Master of Professional Accounting (MPA), and Master of Business Administration (MBA) programs. Her research interests are in the area of Accounting, Business and Management.

Mani Naiker

Dr Mani Naiker

After completing his Bachelor of Applied Science (honors) at the University of Western Sydney, Mani Naiker embarked on his PhD studies at Charles Sturt University in collaboration with the Australian Wine Research Institute. Upon completion, he returned to his native Fiji Islands and joined the chemistry department at the University of the South Pacific. During this period, he travelled extensively through the Pacific Islands (Solomon Islands, Tonga, Samoa, Kiribati) on behalf of the distance and flexible learning centre delivering chemistry courses and facilitating the overall management of the science laboratories the University had established in these countries. In between Mani’s academic positions in Fiji and later at Federation University Australia, he gained a multitude of experience and knowledge through being employed within commercial analytical laboratories in various roles. In 2017, he joined the Australian Catholic University (Brisbane Campus) as a lecturer in science before taking up his current role as a lecturer in chemistry at CQUniversity in Rockhampton.