The Aboriginal Affairs Executive Committee (AAEC) was established in 2020 and provides strategic advice, oversight and endorsement of work plans to address the Government of South Australia's strategic priorities in improving outcomes for Aboriginal South Australians.


The committee is made up of 6 chief executives and 6 Aboriginal senior leaders in the South Australian public sector:

  • David Brown (co-chair), Chief Executive, Department for Correctional Services
  • Nerida Saunders (co-chair), Executive Director, Aboriginal Affairs and Reconciliation, Department of the Premier and Cabinet
  • Rick Persse, Under Treasurer, Department of Treasury and Finance
  • Paul Heithersay, Chief Executive, Department for Energy and Mining
  • Professor Martin Westwell, Chief Executive, Department for Education
  • Cathy Taylor, Chief Executive, Department for Child Protection
  • Lynne Cowan Acting Chief Executive, Chief Executive, Department for Health and Wellbeing
  • Scharlene Lamont, Executive Director, Aboriginal Services, Department for Correctional Services
  • Donna Robb, Principal Leadership Advisor, Office of the Commissioner for Public Sector Employment
  • Loretta Romeo, Senior Manager, Aboriginal Partnerships and Governance, SA Housing Authority
  • Judith Lovegrove, Metropolitan Senior Aboriginal Social and Emotional Wellbeing Worker, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services, Women's and Children's Health Network, SA Health
  • Lisa Hanson Agius, Principal Youth and Family Practitioner, Metropolitan Aboriginal Youth and Family Services, Department for Human Services.

Working groups

Reporting to the committee are 4 working groups, which consist of 16 members in each, who are drawn from across the South Australian public sector. The priorities of these working groups are:

  1. Over-representation of Aboriginal South Australians in the criminal justice sector
  2. Economic participation
  3. Supporting growth in Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations
  4. Building capacity in vulnerable families.

For more information, please contact the Aboriginal Affairs Executive Committee Secretariat via