The University of Sydney on Monday announced Professor Lisa Jackson Pulver as new Deputy Vice-Chancellor, Indigenous Strategy and Services (DVISS).
Professor Jackson Pulver was the first known Aboriginal person to complete a PhD in Medicine at USyd, and comes from her most recent role as the inaugural Pro Vice-Chancellor (Engagement and Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander Leadership) at Western Sydney University. She was previously also the inaugural Chair of Aboriginal Health at UNSW.
Jackson Pulver replaces Professor Juanita Sherwood, who has held the role since September 2017 in a temporary capacity following the shock departure of Shane Houston, who had held the role since 2011.
Honi reported in October 2017 that “an email sent to Houston days before he was dismissed cited concerns about a close personal relationship between Houston and Shane Perdue, who was also employed in the Indigenous portfolio.”
“Honi understands that Perdue and Houston were not in a relationship, and that the University had been made aware that allegedly homophobic rumours were circulating amongst staff, but had done little to mitigate them.”
Houston took the University to the Federal Court over his dismissal, which was settled by the University in July this year, as reported by The Australian.
Vice-Chancellor Michael Spence said that Professor Jackson Pulver’s “skills have enabled the advancement of Aboriginal peoples as well as the broader academy of students and staff at the institutions she has contributed to.”
“The selection panel and I have been enormously impressed with Lisa’s commitment to embed belonging and key Aboriginal frameworks and world views into initiatives across the education, research and government sectors, as well as into the RAAF where she is a specialist reserve member.”
“The University of Sydney gave me the opportunity to enter tertiary education,” said Jackson Pulver, “I was the first in my family to do so.”
“I’m honoured to be able to return in a very different capacity and give back to the University’s staff and students in this way.”