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Founder of Cape York Partnership and Good to Great Schools Australia


Noel Pearson comes from the Guugu Yimidhirr community of Hopevale on South Eastern Cape York Peninsula. He is an Indigenous Australian, land rights activist and a history and law graduate of the University of Sydney.

Current work

Noel is an Advisor for the Cape York Partnership (CYP) and Chairman of Good to Great Schools Australia (GGSA), and a current Vice-Chancellor’s Fellow of the University of Melbourne.

CYP is an Indigenous policy reform and leadership organisation dedicated to empowering Cape York Indigenous people and encompasses the Cape York Institute, Cape York Enterprises, Djarragun College, Cape York Employment, Cape York Timber and Bama Services.

Good to Great Schools Australia supports schools to transition from Poor to Fair, Fair to Good and Good to Great.. Good to Great Schools Australia’s education program was developed by the Cape York Academy for its three primary schools - Aurukun, Coen and Hope Vale. It is responsible for delivering significant improvements in literacy and numeracy in these schools.

Noel’s goal is to enable Cape York’s Indigenous people to have the capacity to choose the life they have reason to value by reinstating the rights of Aboriginal people to take responsibility for their lives.

Noel was an excellent speaker. For the duration of his speech, he had the audience's absolute attention. International Sports Tours

Noel was a big hit with delegates at the CHA conference. They found him to an inspirational, motivated and passionate speaker. He received a standing ovation at the end of his presentation, something I've not seen before at our conference and I've been here for 13 years!

Catholic Health Australia Incorporated
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