Associate Professor Lynette Riley AO

Academic and education trailblazer

2022 NSW Senior Australian of the Year Nominee

A Wiradjuri and Gamilaroi woman, Associate Professor Lynette Riley has been pivotal in Aboriginal education policy. She has helped change the way Aboriginal studies is taught across New South Wales.

Lynette has raised seven children and completed her PhD in her sixties, while experiencing her third episode of breast cancer. She has always stayed true to her Wiradjuri and Gamilaroi heritage which has shaped her as an educator. Her groundbreaking work to incorporate Aboriginal perspectives in the study of humanities has changed many people’s understanding of Aboriginal worldviews.

Lynette is an expert in translating research findings to deliver practical, positive change for Aboriginal people. These include a community profiling tool to identify needs in western New South Wales and a training tool to analyse resources for cultural bias.

A founding member of the New South Wales Department of Education’s Aboriginal Education Unit, Lynette currently advises on research design and conducts data collection with Aboriginal staff and families.