Michelle Deshong is from Townsville, North Queensland and draws here connection to Kuku Yulanji nation. She has completed a BA with First Class Honours in Political Science and Indigenous studies and is working on her PhD (on the participation of Aboriginal women in public and political life) at James Cook University. Michelle is currently the CEO of the Australian Indigenous Governance Institute.
Michelle has worked in both the Government and NGO sectors, and has held many senior leadership roles and she currently holds a number of directorship roles in the Not for Profit sector, including the Supply Nation Board, Thirrili and the OXFAM Indigenous Advisory Council. In 2013 Michelle was named in the Australian Financial Review/Westpac 100 Women of Influence Awards.
Michelle has extensive experience in areas of leadership, governance and politics. She has a strong commitment to human rights and has also been an NGO representative on many occasions at the United Nations forums on the Commission on the Status of Women and Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women. She has a strong background in gender equality and works to ensures that the voices of Indigenous women are represented at all levels.
In 2016 Michelle is undertook research in the USA and Canada as part of her Fulbright scholarship to develop strategies for Nation building, leadership and gender equality. She was also named as the 2015 National NAIDOC Scholar of the Year.