Korin Gamadji Institute program coordinator Tahlia Biggs has been recognised for her commitment and compassion to make a difference within the Aboriginal community.

Biggs was a joint-winner of this year’s Ricci Marks award, formerly the Aboriginal Young Achievers Awards.

It recognises individual achievements and aspirations of young (16-25 years) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in training, education, arts, sport, culture and community leadership.

Biggs, 20, is a graduate of the KGI’s Richmond Emerging Aboriginal Leaders (REAL) program and now works at the Institute as its program coordinator.

She participated in the Victorian Youth Parliament in 2013 with the REAL alumni team, where they successfully put forward a bill to have Aboriginal culture made compulsory in the secondary school curriculum.

Biggs has been involved in several community organisations and events including; the Black Border Theatre, Albury Aboriginal Youth Committee, BlackOut Wodonga and the YMCA. Tahlia has been nominated three years in a row for the ‘Youth of the Year’ NAIDOC Awards Albury Wodonga.

In the future, Biggs hopes to be elected to the House of Representatives in federal parliament. She believes it would be a privilege to speak in parliament about the issues and concerns of her people, and in doing so, help heal the gap between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians.

KGI Director Aaron Clark said he was proud of Biggs’ many achievements, including the Ricci Marks Award.

“This award helps recognise the role the KGI is playing in fostering and growing leadership within our young people, as reflected by the number of people we’ve had nominated but also in Tahlia,” Clark said.

“Richmond should be extremely proud of the role the KGI has played in Tahlia’s development since she was 14 years old, alongside her family and home community.

“Strength in identity and having a voice is at the forefront of the KGI’s vision and Tahlia has really come to the fore with her confidence and ability to tell her story.”

Biggs is one of three KGI alumni to win the award, alongside Elise Muller (2016) and Will Austin (2014).