The words 'Winkiku Rrumbangi'

Winkiku (pronounced Win-kee-koo) is a Pitjantjatjara word meaning ‘everybody’ or ‘on behalf of’, and in the context of 'speaking for' also includes Wankantjaku or Wangkapayi (for different tenses).  The word is familiar to many other Central/Western desert speakers including Luritja and Pintubi. 

Rrumbangi (pronounced Rrum-bun-gee) is a Yolngu-matha word meaning ‘together’.  The long form proposed for the title is Rrumbangi Djama Yolngu Rom (to work together with Aboriginal people’s law).  Dharanganmirri means to ‘understand’ and in the context of Australian people working with Yolngu to understand this space. 


Ms Alison Anderson of the western desert area and Dr James Gaykamangu a senior Yolngu person of Arnhem land were consulted for appropriate words to form part of the title of Winkiku Rrumbangi NT Indigenous Lawyers.  Their input is greatly appreciated.

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  • To increase the number of ATSI students, lawyers and legal professionals within the Northern Territory.

  • To foster legal pathways for ATSI people within the legal profession.

  • To encourage young people into the legal profession.

  • To develop the legal skills and capabilities of members.

  • To enhance resources for ATSI legal students.

  • To educate the wider legal profession on ATSI legal issues.


  • To advocate for better outcomes for ATSI people within the legal system.

  • To reaffirm the importance of ATSI authority in law.

  • To promote law reform.

  • To conduct research upon on any relevant issue of its members.



  • To enhance the professionalism and excellence of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) lawyers and students within the legal profession.

  • To advocate on behalf of members within the legal profession and bodies.

  • To create supportive network for members.

  • To enhance the social and emotional wellbeing of members.

  • To promote the roles and profiles of members.

  • To foster partnerships with Indigenous legal and non legal professional associations.


As an organisation representing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander lawyers and law students in the NT we recognise the value of genuine engagement and partnerships with legal and educational institutions, agencies and organisations in working towards mutual outcomes.  

With our regular directors' meetings and general meetings with members we take the time to work through, consult and develop positions that as best possible represent our members' views.  Our leadership includes a depth of knowledge and experiences that can add value to work in the legal and policy setting.  We also value the work of collaborations and partnerships to deliver results for our people.        

Some of our more specific work in this space includes:

  • Individual directors and members serve important roles in their own communities, families, workplaces, organisations, companies and institutions.

  • Our directors are closely involved in the Bilata Legal Pathways Program in the NT actively encouraging and supporting Aboriginal people to pursue their interests and studies and careers in law.   

  • Individual directors and members serve roles on committees including advisory committees in legal and related matters.

  • We are currently building our membership base and surveying members with the view of developing detailed proposals for relevant organisations who can support our work.  

A key example of a partnership to deliver an innovative and ground-breaking program is with the College of Law, Australian National University and the North Australian Aboriginal Justice Agency course 'Legal Education for True Justice: Deep Listening: Indigenous Perspectives and Deep Listening on Country'.  More info is here

Please contact us to discuss ways we can assist your organisation or body in its work.

History of the organisation

In the late 1990s a group of Aboriginal law students at Charles Darwin University talked about setting up a group to support each other and encourage and mentor future law students.  From these discussions it was clear that there were some unique experiences and specific needs that could be supported by setting up a more formal and organised structure. 

In 2016 this idea became a reality.  A notice was sent to a network of lawyers to encourage broad participation and a process was put in place to draw upon the resources of the network.  Meetings took place monthly and over a long period to build a sustainable base of support.  

When presented with a number of options the group decided to incorporate its own association. This led to the formation of Winkiku Rrumbangi NT Indigenous Lawyers Aboriginal Corporation.  

The Founding Directors are: David Woodroffe (President), Natasha O'Connell, Jasmin Onus, Mark Munnich, Brionee Noonan, Tamika Williams and John Rawnsley.  Click here to see profiles of current Directors. 

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The logo was created in preparation for the 2019 National Indigenous Legal Conference hosted by our organisation and for the first time in Darwin, 13 & 14 August 2019. 


The logo, created by Shayla Mayor, a Bardi and Kaigas Torres Strait Island person, includes the green ant and honey ant and symbolises the connection of the Northern Territory between the Top End and Centre. 


The words Winkiku and Rrumbangi are from language groups from these two areas and their meanings are associated with this concept.   

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To contact us reach out to any of the directors or email