“Pastor Don Brady”
Acrylic on Stretched Canvas
400 mm x 500mm
Not For Sale Yet
Stock no LRB034
Pastor Don Brady was part of the core political leadership in the Brisbane Black movement in the 1960s and 1970s. He was a legend in his own time.
Uncle Don Brady is of Kuku Yalanji descent and his tribal name is Kawanji.
Originally from Palm Island (where he spent time as a professional tent boxer) he moved to Brisbane in 1962.
A self-confessed former alcoholic, he was known as the “punching parson” because of his ability to handle homeless inebriates frequenting Musgrave Park in South Brisbane.
Don Brady was given a Churchill scholarship in 1968 and he visited and worked with a number of First Nations and other communities in the US. He also visited the urban ghettos of New York at the same time Malcolm X was big in Harlem.
Upon his return, he was a founding member of the Brisbane Tribal Council (which became the National Tribal Council after 1970) which was set up to help Indigenous people establish their own identity and to preserve their culture. The work and struggle of the Tribal Council paved the way for the setting up of the first Aboriginal and Islander medical, legal and housing centres.
More than five hundred people gathered at Musgrave Park to mourn his passing in 1985. Praising his leadership, Rev. Charles Harris described him as “the Martin Luther King of the Aboriginal race”. His peers hailed him as a civil rights advocate who gave Aboriginal people a sense of pride and taught them to fight for their rights.