Full Name: Rhonda Duffin
Role in the project: Indigenous Research Associate
Brief background bio:
Rhonda Duffin is a traditional owner and Elder for the Djabugay people. She graduated in Community Development and Management from Curtin University and has represented her community as an active committee member at the Queensland Museum, Djabugay Tribal Aboriginal Corporation, Federation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Languages (FATSIL), Ngoonbi Co-Operative Society and the People Against Kuranda Skyrail (PAKS).
Rhonda was trained as a Museum Technician through the James Cook University in the Material Cultural Unit. She has researched collections of Djabugay material culture held at the South Australian Museum in Adelaide, Australian Museum in Sydney, and the Queensland Museum in Brisbane. She played a key role in in the development of the ‘Jilli Binna Cultural Resource Centre’ in the 1990s in Kuranda, which showcased Aboriginal material culture from the rainforest. Rhonda has taught the Djabugay language in Kuranda State school with linguistic anthropologist Michael Quinn and her close friend Rhonda Brim. Together, they also share Djabugay culture and traditional skills with younger generations, and both teach traditional twining and coiling techniques to weave baskets from river grass (Lomandra Longifolia), lawyer cane (Calamus sp.) and black palm fibre (Normanbya normanbyi).