Sydney: ATSI Leadership Scholarship

Christine Ross ATSI WA Scholarship Recipient

Aboriginal Torres Strait Islander (ATSI) community leaders play a vital role in our society, behind closed doors are delighted to invite respected leaders to join our membership in Sydney.

Applications are now open two fully-funded 12-month BCD Memberships valued at $7,500 +GST each to award.


BCD’s scholarship program is not an Award for the best, most accomplished and impressive ATSI female leader, but rather an avenue to provide an opportunity to a female looking for a challenge and avenue to grow and develop herself, her community and fellow BCD members.

Thanks to the support of the Australian Government, in 2017 BCD are offering two x 12-month fully funded memberships in Sydney.

A BCD membership will allow access to build networks of influence outside of your community in a way that will expand and challenge current leadership and business practices.

behind closed doors awarded the first ATSI Leadership Scholarship in Adelaide to Aunty Eunice Aston in 2016. There are a total eight ATSI Leadership Scholarships across Australia in 2017.

What is behind closed doors Executive Membership?

Established in July 2008, the behind closed doors Executive Membership is exclusively for high level businesswomen to expand their knowledge and to share their vast amount of business experience within their peer group. The Executive Membership was formed for female leaders and business owners so that members could speak openly and honestly about current and emerging issues businesswomen are faced with every day, with a group of like-minded women.

The membership aims to:

•  Provide a confidential businesswomen’s support network
•  Mentor peers to accept greater professional challenges
•  Provide an avenue for appropriate, challenging, executive and board level, cross industry, experiential learning from a group of outstanding business people
•  Create a virtual board scenario where issues/challenges can be tabled with a high calibre, invaluable and diverse sounding board, in a strictly confidential environment
•  Deliver professional development sessions to extend members personally and professionally
•  Keep abreast of legislation, executive and directors issues and challenges, governance and best practice

The recipients of the ATSI leadership scholarships will be assigned to a behind closed doors Executive group in Sydney. The groups are facilitated by high level, experienced Executives and Board Directors. The groups meet 11 times a year and each session runs for three hours in a Boardroom located in the CBD.

The recipient of the behind closed doors ATSI Leadership scholarship recipients will also receive:

•  A professional sounding board in a safe environment to speak openly and honestly about their challenges, strategies and issues
•  Access to a select executive women’s network and referral sources
•  Professional and personal development in a stimulating environment
•  Exposure and introductions to senior people in business and government
•  Private sessions with local identities and guest speakers
•  Invitations to Businesswomen’s Connexions (network) functions
•  Opportunities for Board Directorships

Visit our Executive Membership page for further details.

Scholarship Process


The behind closed doors ATSI Leadership Scholarship is designed for businesswomen and leaders.  To be eligible, you must be an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander female currently in a  leadership role (i.e. CEO, Managing Director, General Manager) and can demonstrate:

•  Innovative and progressive leadership
•  A high level of integrity and positive value
•  Why the scholarship will benefit you
•  How the scholarship will benefit your organisation


To apply for the behind closed doors ATSI Leadership scholarship you must complete an online application form: Apply Online today

Applications must be submitted online or emailed to


If you would like to nominate a business woman who would benefit from a behind closed doors scholarship, please provide their name, business and contact details.  Submit your nomination via email to Please title your email Sydney ATSI Leadership Scholarship Nomination.

Judging Process

Upon receipt of written applications, a shortlist of finalists will be invited to attend a 30 minute panel interview in the CBD.  Finalists will be scheduled an interview in September.

Finalists must be

  • Open to receiving publicity for participating in/receiving the Scholarship
  • Available for finalist interviews to be held early September.
  • Based in Sydney and able to attend monthly meetings based in the city/city fringe


Kristy Ashton, behind closed doors

For scholarship enquiries, please contact Kristy Ashton, behind closed doors Scholarship Manager on 08 8333 4303 or email

For enquiries of how you can obtain an Executive membership, please contact behind closed doors on 08 8333 4303 or email