Welcome to Acting CEO Jacki Turfrey

New acting CEO to start on Monday

With the decision of our Acting CEO Andy Charles to take six months’ leave to complete his studies, we are excited that our new Acting CEO Jacki Turfrey will start with us on Monday. 

 A big thanks to Andy for all his work, and a deadly welcome to Jacki, who is excited to take the opportunity to work with our mob across the Mallee, during this challenging and exciting phase of change for MDAS.

Jacki Turfrey is a proud Palawa woman who has lived and worked in Victoria for over 30 years.  

Jacki is the proud mother of three children (27, 17 and 14 years old) and moved to Mildura with with her two youngest children to be with her partner in early 2017.

Jacki started work at 15 as an Aboriginal Trainee in the Commonwealth Public Service in Hobart, finishing as a senior manager in Melbourne.  During this period Jacki obtained her first qualification, a Graduate Diploma in Equal Opportunity Administration from Swinburne University.  Jacki went on to obtain her law degree graduating with honours from the University of Melbourne in 1999 and has been admitted to practise law for over 20 years.

Jacki worked as a solicitor in a private commercial law firm for 2 years and as a commercial lawyer, company secretary and director with National Australia Bank for 8 years, ending her time there as the Head of Governance of international banking operations. 

On the birth of her last child, Jacki moved her family to Broome in Western Australia work with the Yawuru Native Title Holders in negotiations with the Western Australian government.  Jacki lived in Broome for 4 years working with community and elders (including Patrick Dodson) and lived on an Aboriginal reserve with the Pigrim family.   In addition to her official role as a lead negotiator, Jacki set up the corporate entities and govenance structures of the Yawuru corporate group and ran the operations of the group as their CEO.

When negotiations finished, Jacki moved to Perth to work in a Mining Exploration Company as a senior executive and lawyer.  For family reasons Jacki returned to Victoria in 2011 and commenced practise as a commercial Barrister. 

In late 2013 Jacki became the Director of the Koori Justice Unit.  During this time Jacki  established the Koori Women’s Diversion program in Mildura.  In 2016 Jacki moved to Aboriginal Victoria as the Director for Treaty to start the critical work that has led to the establishment of the First People of Victoria Assembly.

Jacki was a Director on Aboriginal Housing Victoria from 2003 to 2014, leading the transition of that entity from a co-operative to an independent company taking ownership and control of the Victorian Government’s Aboriginal Housing rental stock. Jacki is currently a director on the Mallee Catchment Management Authority.

Jacki practises as a barrister in Mildura across all jurisdictions including crime and child protection.  Jacki is an accredited Mediator and conducts mediations for state and local government, courts and various Aboriginal groups and entities across Victoria. 

Jacki is excited to take on the opportunity to work with you mob across the Mallee Region during this challenging and exciting phase of change for MDAS.

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MALLEE DISTRICT ABORIGINAL SERVICES  “Our Vision: "Self-determined, healthy, robust and culturally strong Aboriginal communities across the Mallee region."

MDAS calls for kindness ahead of referendum

Read more


NAIDOC art competition winner announced

Read more


Background and geography shouldn't dictate health outcomes

Read more


MDAS calls on community to have their say

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MDAS Responds to new Victorian legislation

Read more


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120 Madden Avenue Mildura
Phone (03) 5018 4100

70 Nyah Road Swan Hill
Phone (03) 5032 8600

9 Nolan Street Kerang
Phone (03) 5412 6004

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MDAS - Quality Innovation Performance Accredited