Debbie Coombes, is a Takarringuwi (Mullet tribe) woman from Pirlangimpi. She joined the TITEB Board in October 2017.
Debbie went to Pularumpi Primary School at Pirlangimpi and completed her secondary education at Mount Saint Bernards College in Herberton on the Atherton Tablelands in Queensland.
When she finished school, her father Graeme marched her up to the council office for a job and she has been working ever since, working her way up from reception to administration, finance and payroll. She also worked at the Pularumpi School, TITEB and Department of Human Services.
Debbie is currently employed by Top End Health Services as Health Promotion, Planning and Evaluation Officer and is also completing her Certificate IV in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Primary Health Care. Until recently, she worked as a Remote Alcohol and Other Drugs Worker, and represented the workforce on its Leadership Group.
Debbie is keen to see closer links between education and health on the Tiwi Islands, to not only improve health outcomes for the Tiwi but to also see more Tiwis working in the health sector. She hopes that TITEB will continue to build on existing relationships with Health.
Debbie feels that she has big shoes to fill. Her sister Karina left the Board to relocate to Canberra to take up another job. Like Karina, Debbie is keen to see more women in leadership roles on the Tiwi Islands, so that the Tiwis are represented equally by both men and women from each skin groups.