David Ross

David Ross was a participant in the DTP Indigenous Peoples’ Rights way back in 1990, the foundational year of the Diplomacy Training Program. He was already then – for the first time –the Director of the Central Land Council (CLC) based in Alice Springs.


David had started work at the CLC in 1979 where he served as operations manager, secretary to the council, assistant director, and was finally appointed its Director in 1989 and remained there till 1994. 

At the time he was also an executive committee member of the Alice Springs Regional Council, and on the board of management of Imparja Television based in Alice Springs.

He then served from 1995-1999 as the inaugural Executive Chairman of the Indigenous Land Corporation (ILC), a national authority established in 1995 to address Indigenous land need and assist Indigenous peoples in land management throughout Australia.

He was reappointed in 2000 – and remains –  Director of the Central Land Council, representing the Aboriginal Peoples of Central Australia.

David Ross has a long history of service to the Aboriginal Peoples of Central Australia. Apart from his leadership roles in the CLC and the ILC, Davis Ross was appointed in 1994 (at the same time as Lois O’Donoghue of South Australia and June Oscar of Western Australia) a Commissioner of the Australian and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC) for a two-year term by then Minister for Aboriginal Affairs, Robert Tickner. Ross has also attended meetings of the United Nations Working Party on Indigenous Populations in Geneva as a representative of a non-government organization.

David Ross has been Chairman of the Board of Management of the Centre for Indigenous Natural and Cultural Resource Management at the Northern Territory University, is a member of the South Australian Museum Board Aboriginal Advisory Group, and the Chair of Kings Canyon Nominees which runs Kings Canyon Resort.

David Ross who is a qualified builder, holds an Associate Diploma in Business Management from the South Australia Institute of Technology. He has had a long-standing commitment to long-term Indigenous development and has played a key role in establishing successful community-controlled Indigenous business enterprises and joint venture partnerships.

Ross was born in Alice Springs and is of Arrernte and Kaytetye descent.


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