Originally from a small Aboriginal tribe known as the Olkola people in the North Cape York region, Natalie Whyte works as a Supply Coordinator in the Australian Army where she is responsible for the coordination and warehousing of essential military equipment.
"I was always interested in becoming a Supply Coordinator; I just never thought I could do it. My Grandfather, Bill Coolburra, gave me the motivation and encouragement to join." Natalie said.
Currently posted to the Defence Force Recruiting Centre in Parramatta, Natalie works as part of a Specialist Recruiting Team focused on Indigenous recruitment in the Australian Defence Force (ADF).
"We are constantly out on the road, heading out to all the rural communities where we show the kids what job opportunities are available in the ADF. We also provide mentoring to the young Indigenous men and women who want to join." Natalie said.
For Natalie, NAIDOC week is a community celebration where all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders can get together to honour their history. She believes it is a great way to celebrate the personal achievements that the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities have made.
"I will not have the joy of participating in NAIDOC Week this year due to military commitments, but I have purchased my NAIDOC Week jersey and will most definitely be wearing it with pride." Natalie said.
Natalie believes that her career in the Army has been rewarding; helping her grow, both professionally and personally.
"The Army has given me an adventure; I get to have experiences that I would not get as a civilian." Natalie said.