Ministerial Multicultural Advisory Council

The purpose of the Ministerial Multicultural Advisory Council (MMAC) is to provide the government and the Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Interests with direct grassroots feedback and advice on relevant policies, issues and needs of the culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) communities of Western Australia — in addition to, and independent of, advice from the Office of Multicultural Interests (OMI) and sector peak body/s. 

 

The role of the MMAC is to:

  • be a consultative body to Government and Minister on issues facing culturally and linguistically diverse communities
  • provide input on government policy, program and planning processes that affect Western Australians from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds
  • provide advice on emerging issues and trends and multiculturalism
  • assist the Minister in reviewing and monitoring of the implementation of the Western Australia Multicultural Policy Framework
  • provide feedback and support to the Supporting Communities Forum on matters under consideration by the Forum, particularly those that impact on the interests and needs of the culturally and linguistically diverse communities
  • contribute to consultations with other public sector agencies
  • undertake any other activities as requested by the Minister
  • the Council’s role is separate to that of the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries and the Office of Multicultural Interests.

    Current MMAC members

    Enzo Sirna AM

    Mr Enzo Sirna AM - Co-Chairperson

    Born in Western Australia of Italian parents, Enzo is President of the Italo-Australian Welfare and Cultural Centre, which offers welfare, cultural, aged and education programs throughout WA.

    Enzo has served on many boards and committees, including the WA Museum of Natural Sciences, the Curriculum Council of WA Syllabus Committees, Australia Remembers Multicultural Committee, the Anti-Racism Strategy Steering Committee and the WA Northbridge History Project. He recently completed a full term as Chair of the Australian Alzheimer's Research Foundation.

    Enzo is currently President of Community Languages WA (formerly the Ethnic Schools Association of WA), Deputy Chair of the Australian Federation of Ethnic Schools Association (Community Languages Australia), and National Coordinator of Italian Educational, Welfare and Cultural State Organisations in Australia.

    Surya Ambati

    Mr Surya Ambati - Member

    Surya Ambati has more than 30 years of engineering, operational, technical and management of railway infrastructure experience.

    Surya is the past President of the Indian Society of WA (ISWA). He led the development and implementation of the new ISWA Constitution, established the ISWA Council comprising of presidents and representatives of all Indian community associations, and was instrumental in ensuring that ISWA successfully operated as the peak umbrella body of all Indian community associations. Surya also played a critical role in acquiring the land for the first Indian Community Centre of Australia in Perth and funding for its building.

    Ting Chen

    Dr Ting Chen - Member

    Dr Ting Chen is the President of the Chung Wah Association, the largest and most established Chinese organisation in WA, founded in 1909.

    Chun Wah serves as the bridge between the Chinese community and mainstream society through promoting harmony, preserving heritage and practising humanity.

    Dr Chen migrated to WA in 1995, and obtained a PhD in Chemistry from Murdoch University in 2003. He has been an active volunteer and community leader since 1997.

    Andrea Creado

    Ms Andrea Creado - Member

    Andrea Creado is the Chief Executive Officer of Ishar Multicultural Women's Health Services. She has over 17 years of experience working with ethnic communities in the area of community health. 

    Andrea holds a Master's Degree in Human Development, Bachelor of Psychology, Bachelor of Arts with Honours in Psychology, and is a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management. She has further training in business, resource, finance and personnel management.

    Andrea has experience in leading people, programs and thinking at strategic and operational levels, in both the government and non-government community-based health services sectors. She was the inaugural Chair of the Ministerial Multicultural Advisory Group. She is the Chair of the Women's Community Health Network and Committee Member of the WA Women's Hall of Fame.

    Joan Hillman OAM

    Ms Joan Hillman OAM - Member

    Joan Hillman is the President of the Jewish Community Council of WA (JCCWA), the umbrella organisation that represents all Jewish community organisations and all Jews to the wider community.

    The JCCWA carries out many roles including representing the Jewish community in its relations with the State Government and other institutions.

    It maintains a watch on any potential WA Government legislation that could adversely impact the Jewish community and considers the effects of the legislation.

    JCCWA takes responsibility to protect and promote the welfare of the WA Jewish community. It projects a positive image of the community and combats anti-Semitism and discrimination.​

    Abdullah Khan

    Mr Abdullah Khan - Member

    Abdullah Khan has been leading the Australian Islamic College Perth as Executive Principal and Chief Executive Officer since 2011.

    He is a Member of the WA Police Muslim Advisory Group and the President of the Islamic Schools Association of Australia.

    Abdullah was awarded the Australian Council for Educational Leaders - WA Honorary Fellowship in 2016 for his contributions to education in WA. He is committed to the education and empowerment of young people through provision of intellectual, artistic and sporting engagement. His contributions in connecting culturally and linguistically diverse communities to the wider community through sport have been acknowledged by the Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries.

    Anh Nguyen

    Dr Anh Nguyen - Member

    Dr Anh Nguyen arrived in Australia as a refugee in 1981. He is medical doctor, and is the principal and proprietor of his own medical practice in Perth.

    Anh has been very active in the community. He is the President of the WA Chapter of Vietnamese Community in Australia, coordinator of the Vietnamese Community School of WA, convener of the Vietnamese radio program on 6-EBA FM, a board member of Girrawheen Senior High School, and also a member of the City of Wanneroo's Multicultural Advisory Group. He has also made significant contributions to the Vietnamese Boat People Monument of Gratitude Project, and the Long Tan Peace Park in Koondoola.​

    Maria Osman

    Ms Maria Osman - Member

    Maria Osman has over 30 years experience as a senior policy adviser on the intersections of gender equality, multiculturalism and human rights. 

    She has worked in the government, community and university sectors as an advocate, policy adviser and strategist, speaker and mentor.

    Maria has held a diverse range of senior State government positions including Executive Director, Office for Women’s Policy, Executive Director, Office of Multicultural Interests and A/Executive Director, Community Building and Services in the Department of Local Government and Communities. In 2015, she was appointed as a delegate to the United Nations 59th Commission on the Status of Women.

    She has served on numerous national, State and local boards and currently holds a number of board positions including Chair of the Humanitarian Group; UWA’s Public Policy Institute’s Advisory Board; the National Harmony Alliance for Migrant and Refugee Women; the National Education Toolkit for FGM/C Awareness Project, Advisory Committee; the WA Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Interests Advisory Board; and the Somali Women’s Association.  ​​

    Joansy King

    Ms Joansy King - Member

    Joansy King is the Chief Executive Officer of the Karen Welfare Association of WA and Co-Founder of the association. She also has experience as a Senior Case Manager with the Multicultural Services Centre of WA.

    She is  passionate with the work she does within the government, international organisations, and social services industry.

    Her focus has always been assisting people with complex issues both in Australia and internationally, in which she has been successful together with her team.

    Her roles include: 

    • Advocate for White Ribbon Australia
    • Community Representative of the WA Police Multicultural Women's Advisory
    ​• Co-Chairperson of the Australian Karen Social Service Network
    • President of the Karen New Year Celebration Committee WA.

    Casta Tungaraza

    Dr Casta Tungaraza - Member

    Dr Tungaraza is an Intercultural-Relations Consultant with experience as a member/Chair of national and State boards including Advisory Committees in Australia. 

    She was a member of the Australian Multicultural Advisory Council that developed the National Multicultural Policy.

    She has a significant academic background in Social Science and has served as a member of the Expert Panel on the Development of A Racial Equality Index for the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (Geneva), a Resource Person for the Africa's Regional Consultation on the African Women's Voices (Senegal), and facilitator of the African Union's ECOSOCC Conference on promoting inclusion of African Women in all facets of development (Baltimore).

    She has been inducted into the WA Women's Hall of Fame for outstanding service for gender equality and economic empowerment of women and also received the WA Multicultural Award.​

    Salim Yousef

    Mr Salim Youssef - Member

    Salim Youssef works to implement community projects with local government and other community groups.

    As Founder and President of the Australian Arab Association he enjoys both the challenge and inspiration of motivating a range of people and community groups to achieve their goals. 

    Salim has worked on the Community Advisory Council at Armadale–Kelmscott Memorial Hospital and was a board member of the United Nations Association of Australia Young Professionals and Bendigo Bank Gosnells.

    Through his extensive community work Salim received the Community Citizen of the Year Awards from the City of Gosnells in 2016 and the WA Multicultural Individual Excellence Award in 2013. He was appointed a People of Australia Ambassador in 2012 and 2014. 

    Edward Zhang

    Dr Edward Zhang JP - Member

    Dr Edward Zhang arrived in Perth in 1994, studying as a PhD student at Curtin University.

    After graduating, he worked as a lecturer and coordinator of the China Desk at Curtin University International Office until 2002. He founded the Australian Chinese Times in 1998 and has been working as Chief Editor ever since.

    He is a life member, founder and former president of the Association of Australian Chinese Mainlanders and Friends (also known as Association of Great China), which operates two Chinese language schools. He is member of the Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Interests' Multicultural Policy Framework Sub-Committee. He has been a Justice of the Peace since 2008.

    Nafiso Mohamed

    Ms Nafiso Mohamed - Member

    Nafiso has a passion for working in international policy and research and has a keen interest in service accessibility, inclusion and equity. In 2020, Nafiso completed an internship at the United Nations Relief and Works Agency in Amman, Jordan, where she focused on combining gender mainstreaming with targeted interventions for women and girls as a tool to bridge historical gaps in gender equality, participation and access to services.

    In 2019, she undertook research in Economic Development and Social Policy at the Centre for Strategic Studies, University of Jordan. Nafiso has engaged in various advocacy and mentor-based programs that support the inclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander and culturally and linguistically diverse communities in Australia through AIME Mentoring and the Youth Affairs Council of WA.

    Meredith Hammat MLA

    Ms Meredith Hammat MLA, Member for Mirrabooka - Member

    Meredith was elected to the WA Parliament in March 2021. The electorate of Mirrabooka is one of the most diverse in the State and Meredith enjoys working with representatives of the many culturally and linguistically diverse communities in the area.

    Before entering Parliament, Meredith was the Secretary of Unions WA for eight years, from 2012 until 2020 and Assistant Secretary of the Australian Services Union between 1999 and 2006. Meredith has held a number of positions on WA Government boards and advisory committees, including the State Training Board, the Sustainable Health Review, My Leave (the Construction Industry Long Service Leave Fund) and the LNG Jobs Taskforce.

    Meredith has a master’s degree from the University of WA and is a graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

    Wendy Rose

    Ms Wendy Rose - Member

    Chief Executive Officer of the Ethnic Disability Advocacy Centre (EDAC) since 2010, Wendy leads a team that is dedicated to safeguarding the rights of people with disability from culturally and linguistically diverse (CaLD) and Aboriginal backgrounds.

    Wendy has made significant contributions to the multicultural sector through policy development, systemic advocacy and community development. Her extensive contributions to social justice issues in the multicultural sector have been driven by her experience of growing up in South Africa under the Apartheid regime.

    Throughout her decades of community service, Wendy has worked as trainer, project officer, evaluator, community development officer, systemic advocate, policy officer and manager. Her knowledge and practice have been informed by tertiary qualifications in Applied Science (Psychology) and Education, and further studies in management, training, project management, communication and relationship building.

    Multicultural Advisory Group

    Page reviewed 26 October 2021