Gail Ker OAM

Over the past 20 years, Gail Ker OAM's vast industry experience and arguably unrivalled expertise in the Australian multicultural, humanitarian and community sectors has seen her change countless lives for the better.

A nationally lauded and award winning visionary, Gail is the CEO of Access Community Services Ltd where, with humility, compassion and a tireless work ethic, she leads her nearly 300 staff in pursuit of their organisational vision; to create social, cultural and economic experiences and opportunities that transform the lives of individuals and communities globally.

Renowned for her expertise in innovative service solutions for newly arrived migrants and humanitarian entrants, Gail is a recognised thought leader in needs-based community planning, innovative business models, social cohesion, strategic partnerships, employment pathways, funding opportunities and strategic direction. Under her tutelage and leadership, Access has grown from a one room youth employment service in Logan City into one of Australia’s leading organisations in the provision of settlement, employment, training, youth support, housing and social enterprise services for migrants, refugees and Australian born clients with an annual over turn over in excess of twenty million dollars.

Her often quoted mantra is “Every Client Counts”.

Informed and working at the cutting edge of policy and sector engagement, Gail’s knowledge is actively sought by politicians, industry leaders and research bodies alike, both nationally and internationally. For the past eight years she has attended the UNHCR’s annual consultations with NGO’s in Geneva. She has several prestigious board appointments including;

  • Settlement Services Advisory Council (SSAC) – Deputy Chair
  • SBS – Member Community Advisory Committee (CAC)
  • NAATI – Professional Reference Group (PRG) – Chair
  • Settlement Council of Australia (SCOA)- Qld Representative on the Executive
  • Migration Council Australia (MCA)
  • Netball Australia – One Netball Advisory Group
  • South Brisbane Primary Health Network (SBPHN) – Community Representative on the Regional Clinical Council (RCC)
  • Logan Leadership Team – Community Representative
  • Interim Multicultural Community Reference Group – Member
  • Humanitarian Settlement Planning and Outcomes Group - Member

Former board appointments have included:

  • Australian Multicultural Advisory Council (AMAC)
  • Australian Multicultural Council (AMC) – Deputy Chair
  • Settlement Council of Australia (SCOA) – former roles as Chair, Secretary and Qld Rep
  • Ethnic Communities Council of Qld (ECCQ) – Board Member
  • Multicultural Communities Council Gold Coast (MCCGC) – Deputy Chair
  • Police Citizens Youth Club (PCYC) Logan – Board Member

Her standing has been recognised with the following honours: 

  • 2008 MAQ Award – Winner of the Individual Category for Community Development
  • 2010 Order of Australia Medal (OAM) for her work in Multiculturalism in Queensland
  • 2012 Paul Harris Fellow -Rotary Foundation of Rotary International “for tangible and significant assistance given for the furtherance of better understanding and friendly relations among peoples of the world”
  • 2015 Australian Human Resources Institute “CEO Diversity Champion Award”
  • 2016 Women’s Federation of World Peace – Ambassador for Peace
  • 2016 United Nations Association of Australia – Queensland Community Award for Recognition of Valuable Community Service
  • 2017 Australian Migration and Settlement Awards – Winner of the Empowering Women Award
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