By ERWIN CHLANDA
Deputy of the NT Administrator Patricia Miller (pictured) has been sacked as the CEO of the Central Australian Aboriginal Legal Aid Service (CAALAS), according to reliable sources and the Facebook posting of a relative, Katrina Bloomfield.
“What a disgusting way to treat such a dignified Territorian and Central Australian without any recognition for her dedication to the Aboriginal Community and to the Community at large that she has worked with for over three decades,” commented Ms Bloomfield.
Neither Dr Miller nor CAALAS Chairman Robert LeRossignol responded to requests from the News for comment.
Dr Miller has worked for CAALAS since 1978 and was due to retire this year.
She was appointed as Deputy of the Administrator on 30 June 2002, the first female Indigenous Australian to hold such a position and as an Arrernte person she is also the first Northern Territory native title holder to do so.
According to a Government House web posting she was born in Alice Springs and is a member of the Liddle family which has both traditional and pioneering ties in Central Australia.
Her mother Polly Liddle was a traditional Alyawarre woman and her father, Milton Liddle, was of Arrernte and Scottish heritage.
Through her parents, Mrs Miller is a native title holder and as such she plays a role within the Lhere Artepe Aboriginal Corporation which represents native title holders within the municipality of Alice Springs, according to the post.
Throughout her time as a resident of Central Australia, Mrs Miller has maintained an active and influential role through positions she has held with numerous organisations and councils including Women’s Committee House, Central Australian Aboriginal Childcare Agency, Central Australian Aboriginal Media Association, Red Cross Alice Springs, and Chair of Imparja Television Board.
More recently Mrs Miller was appointed a Community Representative of the Council for the Order of Australia in 2011. Mrs Miller is currently a serving Board Member for the Centre of Remote Health.
Mrs Miller’s contribution to the Northern Territory has been recognised through various awards including being appointed an Officer of the Order of Australia in 2004 for her service to the community as a significant contributor to debate on issues relating to native title, social justice, education, legal services, health and welfare, and the media.
In that same year Mrs Miller was announced as the Northern Territory’s Australian of the Year, says the post.
Mrs Miller has a keen interest in sports, especially hockey and has represented Alice Springs in the Masters Games.
Her husband is David Miller; they have two sons and four grandchildren.
According to another post, Mr LeRossignol is from the Gurindji tribal group, from Watti Creek.
He has spent most of his years in the Central Australian region.
He spent most of his early life on cattle stations, before moving to Alice Springs (for his children to attend school) where he became a professional jockey to make ends meet.
He remained in the profession for 17 years before heading back to station life, says the post. His family has an olive orchard south of Alice Springs, and a small tourism operation.
Our profile of Mrs Miller at the time of her appointment as Deputy to the Administrator can be found in our foundation archive here. Scroll down to find the report: ‘Our new top lady is black’
Deputy NT Administrator sacked as CEO of CAALAS
By ERWIN CHLANDA