The township of Coen is approximately halfway between Cairns and the tip of Cape York. It is not a discrete Aboriginal community and is part of Cook Shire. The township had an estimated resident adult population of 237 people as at 30 June 2013.
Commissioner Peter Pedro PETER
Commissioner Peter Pedro PETER (Lama Lama Clan) is an Elder of great significance within the Lama Lama Clan and the wider community. Coen Commissioner Peter is a valued member of the Coen Men’s Group who pass on their skills and knowledge in leatherwork and woodwork to the younger men and produce goods for sale. He teaches the traditional art of carving spears and woomeras, as taught by his Elders, and passes on traditional wisdom. Coen Commissioner Peter is also a member of the Coen Justice Group whilst providing respect and leadership as a Local Commissioner.
Commissioner May Mary KEPPLE
Commissioner May Mary Kepple (Winchanum Clan) is a Justice of the Peace (Qualified) and the Recognised Entity for Child Safety in Coen. Coen Commissioner Kepple has had a variety of positions in retail and sales and currently works part-time at Mulley’s Market. She enjoys painting on canvas and previously managed the Wunthulpu Visitor Centre in Coen. As an accredited foster carer since 2007 she remains committed to the welfare of children, ensuring they receive opportunities for self-development and a bright future. Coen Commissioner Kepple spends her weekends on country with her daughter and grandchildren passing on culture and the ways of the Elders.
Commissioner Garry Lloyd PORT
Commissioner Garry Lloyd PORT (Lama Lama / Kuku Yalanji / Awapathu Clans) is from a well respected Coen family and son of Barry Port, the famous Aboriginal police tracker. Coen Commissioner Port is a Justice of the Peace (Qualified) and works at the Hope Vale Campus of Cape York Aboriginal Australian Academy (CYAAA) as a School Engagement Officer. In his role with the CYAAA he works with the children encouraging attendance, conducting the breakfast program, dealing with behaviour issues and liaising with parents. He is deeply involved with supporting young people to ensure they reach their full educational potential, and also volunteers his time to junior sports development, providing guidance for young boys.
Commissioner Elaine Louise LIDDY
Commissioner Elaine Louise LIDDY (Lama Lama Clan) was born in Cairns. She is a fluent Umpithamu language speaker and has contributed to the dictionary of the Umpithamu language. Coen Commissioner Liddy has been pivotal in establishing the Lama Lama Rangers who live and work on the Lama Lama homelands of Port Stewart and is now a fulltime Cultural Heritage Adviser. She is a Justice of the Peace (Qualified) and is a highly respected leader of the Lama Lama Clan. Coen Commissioner Liddy devotes her spare time to the care of her homelands, and to passing on tradition and culture to future generations.
COEN Local Coordinator – Sandra RYE
Sandi was born in Brisbane and is one of seven children. After completing year 10 at Woodridge State High School she attended Seven Hills TAFE College to study business. Before joining the Commission Sandi was employed as a certified fitness instructor/personal trainer and a qualified swimming instructor. She has completed a Diploma of E-Business Support and in 2013 completed her Diploma of Community Services (Case Management). In 2014 Sandi commenced a Degree in Social Work through James Cook University. Sandi’s hobbies are finding new ideas to enhance her health and fitness, playing netball, creative organic cooking and making natural cleaning products. Sandi has chosen to work and study in the humanities field because she loves working with people and empowering them to find the very best within themselves.