Jagera Daran is an Aboriginal and Cultural Heritage consultancy headquartered in Ascot on Brisbane’s inner north side in Queensland, Australia.
The company’s Aboriginal ownership is a competitive advantage in the heritage advisor field. Because Aboriginal people have unique obligations and responsibilities in caring for country and culture, they have a central role in how cultural resource management occurs. It is therefore essential that Aboriginal people be involved in the planning and management processes that affect their country.
The Jagera Daran Mission Statement provides direction for the organisation’s management and defines the company’s fundamental purpose.
Jagera Daran’s mission is:
“To deliver Aboriginal Cultural Heritage, training and labour hire services in the construction, extractive and infrastructure development industries by employing Aboriginal people who can best meet the needs of our corporate and government clients”
The Jagera Daran Vision Statement is a picture of how the organisation will operate in the future. The Vision Statement should inspire future planning.
“Jagera Daran will develop long-term working relationships with companies and government agencies that are repeat customers because they receive the best technical advice, the most accurate historical interpretations and the highest quality reporting. Developing corporate strength and financial resilience, Jagera Daran will continue to add to its asset base and to enter new markets.”
Jagera Daran’s legislative and competitive environments demand that the company delivers technical and scientific consistency along with professional reporting. The organisation is proud of its ability to meet its corporate and legal responsibilities whilst nurturing the creativity, innovation and professional development of its personnel.
Jagera Daran employs six full time and three part-time staff, including management, logistics, training and administration personnel and field officers who bring their skill sets and knowledge base to the company’s projects. The company employs between 60 and 80 Cultural Heritage Officers (CHO) on a casual basis to resource field assignments.
These assignments include:
Cultural Heritage surveys
Cultural Heritage monitoring
Jagera Daran periodically engages the contracted services of technical advisors including archaeologists and anthropologists. These engagements are on a project basis and time contributed by contractors is costed separately to clients.
Madonna Thomson Is the managing director of Jagera Daran, a member of the Jagera People and is a grand niece of the late Senator Neville Bonner. Madonna has worked with the Aboriginal Communities in South East Queensland (SEQ) with a particular focus on developing and sharing traditional knowledge about management of the State’s natural resources and environment.
Madonna has worked extensively for more than 15 years in native title, cultural heritage and natural resource management. Madonna was instrumental in developing a regional engagement framework, in consultation with the Traditional Owner groups of South East Queensland. The engagement framework guided government and community engagement with Traditional Owner groups for seven years, creating a more effective process and mechanism for meaningful engagement, based on community principles.
Madonna has presented at numerous international, national and state conferences on Indigenous engagement and governance in native title, cultural heritage and natural resource management. Madonna is a recipient of the Queensland inaugural Indigenous Leaders awards and one of only 100 individuals chosen by the Federal Government to participate in the Australian Future Leaders Forum run by the Howard Government in 2006.
For more than 12 years, Madonna has been involved in the facilitation of Aboriginal engagement in Natural Resource Management programs at state and national levels. She is adept at the negotiation of Indigenous Land Use Agreements and Cultural Heritage Management Plans/Agreements. Madonna creates and builds corporate and governance models, facilitates organisational capacity building and advises on accountability and business management.
James Bonner is a member of the Jagera People and a grand-nephew of the late Senator Neville Bonner. James has managed the coordination and implementation of numerous cultural heritage management plans and agreements on a diverse range of projects for more than 12 years. James has extensive experience in negotiating robust and effective native title & cultural heritage processes for inclusion in indigenous land use agreements, compulsory and voluntary cultural heritage plans and agreements.
James has had more than 12 years experience on in excess of 50 aboriginal archaeological excavations within South East Queensland. His experience has enabled him to provide effective mentoring and training skills to guide the involvement and participation of Aboriginal Parties when undertaking mitigation and sub-surface investigation.
James has worked with Jagera Daran in developing risk management procedures and protocols to guide cultural heritage assessment, mitigation and post construction management.
James’s position within Jagera Daran requires the identification and management of resources and personnel on small and large-scale projects.
Daniel Jones is an archaeologist having received his Bachelor of Arts qualification majoring in Archaeology and Palaeoanthropology from the University of New England. Daniel has had more than 11 years experience in the area of cultural heritage across a wide variety of project types and landscapes. These skills and experiences are now being utilised as Project Coordinator for Jagera Daran.
As Project Coordinator for Jagera Daran, Daniel utilises his skills gained through cultural heritage work done and through the study he is currently undertaking. Daniel has experience in leading small teams of Traditional Owners on Aboriginal cultural heritage surveys, writing and implementing mitigation strategies such as test pitting processes. Daniel also organises survey teams and coordinates monitoring groups for post mitigation work.
Daniel is experienced in ensuring that the Aboriginal archaeological excavations are conducted according to archaeological standards in order to gain the appropriate information from each test excavation. Daniel is experienced in preparing cultural heritage mitigation and test pit reports that provide recording of Aboriginal archaeological excavations to meet client requirements and expectations.
The test pitting process and reporting designed and implemented by Jagera Daran are conducted up to the archaeological and aboriginal cultural standards. This is an important feature to help mitigate large cultural heritage sites and also sub surface sites which may not be visible on the surface.
Caroline Bray was the founding director of Jagera Daran. She previously held the position of Women’s Health officer for Aboriginal and Island Heath Services and established the first Aboriginal women’s holistic service. Caroline was a pioneer of Aboriginal women’s health, creating specific and tailored services ensuring Aboriginal women of all ages and locations had access to health programs and support.
As a founding Director of Jagera Daran, Caroline started the company with $200 and no fixed assets. She has grown the business in collaboration with the company’s other Director.
Caroline has been involved in Healthy Waterways and natural resource focused organisations, advising on Indigenous Community Engagement and involvement in program delivery and representation.
Caroline has brought great vision and experience in advising on the development of best practice methods in service delivery from a holistic perspective.
William ‘Bill’ Bonner
We pay respect to Uncle Bill Bonner as a consulting elder and Jagera man responsible for his tireless fieldwork, his example to the younger generations and his pivotal role as a cultural educator. Uncle Bill has been involved in every single significant large Jagera Daran project and excavation, ensuring in the field that cultural knowledge is transferred to emerging leaders. Uncle Bill’s contributions are ongoing and greatly appreciated.
We honour the memory of and are thankful for the example that Uncle Ken Bonner provided as an elder dedicated to the improvement of Jagera Daran’s integration of technology in its field methodologies and practises as effective tools in preserving cultural heritage. Uncle Ken possessed significant knowledge given to him by his father the late Senator Neville Bonner and Ken was highly active in educating junior members of his people in cultural protocols, especially in engaging tribal neighbours in relation to native title matters.