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Parrwang Community Arts

Cultural Conversations: Reconciliation Week 2023

Be a Voice for Generations

Join Tom Molyneux, Gerard Black, Marsha Uppill, Christine Couzens MP & Matt Stokes for a yarn and a chance to come together for Reconciliation Week with a panel lead discussion around the 2023 theme: “Be a Voice For Generations: Act today for a reconciled tomorrow”.

Hosted by Gunditjmara man, actor and playwright Tom Molyneux, First Nations voices and perspectives will be at the forefront as a panel of local First Nations artists, elders and allies come together to examine the tangible ways in which we can all use our power and our words to be a voice for reconciliation in our every day lives, where we live, work and socialise.

This yarning circle style event will be hosted by Gunditjmara man, actor and playwright Tom Molyneux. Tom is the Manager of Indigenous Inclusion at Deakin University.

This is an opportunity for Aboriginal and Non-Aboriginal people of all gender identities to gather, join the conversation, ask questions and walk together.

Artwork – 2023 National Reconciliation Week Official Logo

Due to limited capacity, registration for this free event is essential.

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Meet Your Panel

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About Tom Molyneux

Tom Molyneux is a Gunditjmara theatre actor, director, playwright and higher education professional based on Wadawurrung Country in Geelong, Australia. He holds a Bachelor of Laws/Bachelor of Performing Arts from Monash University, a Graduate Certificate of Management from the Australian Institute of Business and a Master of Business (Arts and Cultural Management) from Deakin University.

Tom has an extensive history of work in successful independent and touring theatre productions, including as an actor and director in 'Stardust + The Mission', which extensively toured regional Victoria in 2019 to great acclaim and subsequently toured to over 35 venues nationally around Australia in 2022. He received a Green Room Award nomination for his performance in The Mission.

Tom is currently the Manager, Indigenous Inclusion at Deakin University, working with a growing team in the Office of Indigenous Strategy and Innovation who are responsible for developing and implementing a range of strategies and initiatives to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students and staff, including a large transformation project to embed Indigenous Knowledges and perspectives into all courses.

About Gerard Black

Gerard Black is a proud Worimi man. Gerard grew up in Torquay and has a deep connection to Wadawurrung Country, where he has been nurtured and grown.

Gerard’s interest in art started at school, but he spent time as a builder and only later returned to his art roots to become an internationally recognised tattoo artist and more recently a fine artist.

About Marsha Uppill

Proud Adnyamathanha woman, Marsha Uppill is the Co-Founder and Director of Arranyinha Pty Ltd. Arranyinha is Marsha’s birth name meaning First Born Woman of her Mother. Her life’s journey guides her current and future direction as she advocates and works towards generational change for First Nations peoples and communities.

With over 30 years experience in State and local government, alongside Federal government and with industry, education and communities organisations, Marsha brings a unique two worlds cohesive approach to strategic & systems change, Aboriginal affairs, social inclusion, workforce planning & reform, & governance.

Marsha’s ethos is cultural respect at the core, creating a foundation built on self-determination, collaboration & communication. As a born story teller, Marsha is able to connect, engage & inspire you to become part of the change in the present to positively impact the generations to come.

She was appointed in late 2022 as the Inaugural Chair of G21’s First Nations Pillar, is Board Member of Short Black Opera and Reconciliation Advisor to Cotton On Group.

Marsha, along with her husband and Arranyinha Co-Founder Nick Uppill, are the proud parents of 3 deadly Warriors who all know who they are, where they come from, their cultural kinship, connection and identity, one of their most proudest of achievements. In their spare time, Marsha and Nick volunteer as Coordinators of the Empower Food Relief Centre in Grovedale.

Marsha is nurturing, confident, respectful. She is strengthened by those who have gone before, & for those that come after. A First Nations Woman determined to make this life matter in all aspects, in all areas and in all systems, through education, inspiration and empowerment.

About Christine Couzens MP

Christine Couzens has proudly served as Member for Geelong since November 2014. Geelong born and bred, mother of four, and an advocate with extensive experience in community development.

As a young mother Christine was widowed with three young children. As her late husband was a proud Gunditjmara man, addressing issues that affect First Peoples is close to her heart. Christine is the Victorian Government’s Ambassador for Closing the Gap. In 2022 Christine was appointed as Parliamentary Secretary for First Peoples.

About Matt Stokes - "Stokesy"

Matt Stokes is a dual premiership player with the Geelong Football Club where he was a brilliant and explosive small forward.

His passion is giving back and helping others thrive and it is off the field where he has also excelled whether it be mentoring young players to cope with the rigours of AFL football, helping Indigenous people with employment and other opportunities.

Growing up in Darwin gave him an appreciation for mixed cultures and fostered his love for culture and community. Sport was a major bridge between culture and community and Matt was an elite junior basketballer and footballer.

His former official community roles include the AFL Indigenous engagement and programs manager and people and engagement manager at the Geelong Football Club.

He is currently Managing Director of Larrakia Billirra and a Director of Seeker Global which create employment and other opportunities for Indigenous people to facilitate generational change.

Outside this amazing work he Kisers a doting father, enjoys footy as a spectator and pursues his first sporting love which is basketball.

For further information regarding Reconciliation Week 2023 - Be a Voice for Generations, head to the Reconciliation Australia website linked here.

Cultural Conversations is presented in partnership with Deakin University’s office of Indigenous Strategy and Innovation.

We respectfully acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land on which Geelong Arts Centre stands, the Wadawurrung People of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to their Elders past, to Elders present and to emerging leaders, recognising their continuing connection to land, water, culture and community.



Limelight - Studio 4


90 minutes, no interval


Geelong Arts Centre - 81 Ryrie Street