top of page

Professor Kevin Williams 
Cultural Advisor & Mentor
Wakka Wakka / Gunggari Elder

Uncle Kevin Photo.jpg
Professor Kevin Williams BA (CQU) LLB (UNSW) LLM (SCU)
Adjunct Professor UniSC School of Law and Society.  
Member UQ Ethics Advisory Committee.
Member Qld Sentencing Advisory Council
Resident Elder Buranga Centre UniSC. 
Elder/Mentor Career Trackers.
Cultural Consultant Southern Cross Soloists. 
Board Member Sunshine Coast University Hospital.
Principal WILLIAMS LEGAL CONSULTING

Uncle Kevin Williams is the son of a Wakka Wakka woman Maureen Stanley and a Gungurri man George Williams.

 

He always acknowledges the importance of his parents in his upbringing both culturally and with a western education, which allowed him to walk in two different worlds.

 

Kevin’s father was a stockman who enlisted in the army in Cloncurry on 14 September 1940. He served in the 26th Infantry Battalion. After the war he went back to doing stock work. He passed away in his eightieth year in 1997.

 

His mother was a domestic servant who commenced her working life at the age of ten. Prior to her starting work she said she was fortunate to have been bought up for a good part of her formative life by her grandparents who lived in the bush and although they spoke English, they only spoke their Wakka Wakka language when they raised his mother. They also passed on Wakka Wakka lore and knowledge to her. Kevin’s mother Maureen is 94 years of age. Maureen’s brother whom Kevin was named after was an initiated man.

Kevin’s parents met on Alroy Station in western Queensland when his mother at the age of 19 went there to work, his father was doing stock work on the property at the time. Theirs wasn’t a love story made in heaven, it was made on the dry, hot and dusty plains of western Queensland and they had several children as they moved from property to property working.


Kevin spent the first five years of his life living in a tent with his brother Peter and sister Patricia while his father took on fencing work on cattle and sheep stations around Longreach in central western Queensland, his mother continued working as a domestic.


His parents had a dream that their children would get and education because as his mother said “I loved school but I only went to grade four, education is your way out of poverty and you will use that education to help your people.” Kevin’s father said “you will get an education so that you are not a slave like me.” Four of their children have tertiary qualifications.


Kevin did get an education, obtaining the highest mark in the Queensland senior exam in Modern History and a scholarship to university.
He eventually went to university in his late twenties, prior to that he worked for the Aboriginal Development Commission.


Kevin was the first Aboriginal degree graduate from what is now known as Central Queensland University. He went on to complete his undergraduate law degree at UNSW and his Master of Laws at SCU after being awarded the Lionel Murphy law scholarship. Kevin could have undertaken his PhD at Harvard but didn’t declined to do so because of family reasons.He is forever grateful to his parents for their vision in the importance of education as well as the four people whom he met through his tertiary studies who guided, inspired, helped and coerced him to bigger and better things.

Kevin was instrumental in setting up the Indigenous pre-law program at UNSW in 1994 which was the template for other UNSW programs such as pre commerce, pre medicine et al. Many universities have followed the UNSW pre-law program by implementing similar programs in law.


Kevin was the first chair of Ngalaya the umbrella organization for lawyers/law students in NSW, Ngalaya celebrated  its 25th anniversary in 2022. 


He also taught black letter law at universities for many years.


Currently, Kevin is semi-retired at the Sunshine Coast (Gubbi Gubbi country), he still lectures part time at UniSc as well as sitting on several university ethics committees and being a mentor, elder for students at UniSc and Career Trackers. He is also a member of the Qld Sentencing Advisory Council and writes and lectures on the upcoming referendum for constitutional recognition for Indigenous Australians.


His involvement in Southern Cross Soloists (SXS) came about because of his nephew Chris being the inaugural didgeridoo player in the SXS Didgeridoo Commission Project leading up to the 2032 Brisbane Olympics.


Kevin firmly believes that music is the language for all peoples and the fusion of the didge with what the SXS envisages is something that all Australians can take pride in as it blends the old and the new in music crossover. 
 

bottom of page