Moriarty Foundation announces Joanna Shulman as inaugural CEO


Indigenous children’s charity, Moriarty Foundation, has appointed social impact and human rights leader, Joanna Shulman, as its inaugural CEO as it plans a major expansion to impact up to 5,000 vulnerable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children. 

Established in 2011 by Yanyuwa man John Moriarty AM and Ros Moriarty, Moriarty Foundation’s programs, Indi Kindi and John Moriarty Football, are shifting intergenerational disadvantage and closing the gap for Indigenous children and youth in remote and regional communities.  

Shulman is highly respected for her 12-year tenure as CEO of not-for-profit Redfern Legal Centre where she doubled the Centre’s partnerships, resourcing and impacts, providing more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples with access to justice and other support services.   

“I am thrilled to be joining such an impactful organisation that is so successful at delivering deep and life-changing outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander kids and families.” 

“Its success lies in the fact that it co-designs solutions with communities and its programs are community-led and run.” 

“I am excited to work with communities and partners to grow these programs and deepen their impact,” added Shulman. 

Shulman joins the Moriarty Foundation as it plans to launch a campaign for funding that will expand its delivery from 2,000 to 5,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children nationally.  

Moriarty Foundation Co-Founder/Co-Chair and Executive Director, Ros Moriarty highlighted that the Moriarty Foundation has come a long way since they started in our first community of Borroloola in the remote Northern Territory with just 150 children.  

“We’ve since piloted and modelled our programs to address the many complexities of delivering in remote and regional Australia.” 

The foundation has successfully scaled to now reach over 2,000 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children in 18 communities and schools across the Northern Territory, Queensland and New South Wales. 

“Over 12 years we have developed a community-led platform that successfully equips vulnerable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and youth with tools from early learning and football (soccer) to break their cycle of disadvantage,” said Moriarty.  

Moriarty Foundation’s vision to unlock the potential of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children is inspired by the journey of Co-Founder/Co-Chair Yanyuwa man John Moriarty AM.  

John Moriarty was the first Indigenous Socceroo and the first Aboriginal person to graduate from a university in South Australia. 

“We are meaningfully impacting 13 of the 17 Closing the Gap targets and we are poised and ready to expand the benefits of our programs.” 

 Joanna has the expertise and experience to lead our teams to realise this goal so we can impact even more children, families and communities with the change they want to see,” said John.   

“Football and education changed my life. My wish is to see more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children break the barriers I had the chance to break, so they have a good education, are healthier and can achieve better life outcomes,” he added.