A couple of weeks ago, we here at the NCIE had our first CEO Reconciliation Ride. The brainchild of the LIFE team leaders, Ben Bowen and Sean Appoo, it was an opportunity to build a respectful engagement with ancient tradition and living culture for those corporate and community leaders who spend most mornings on their bike.

Photo: Ben Bowen and Sean Appoo after the smoking ceremony getting ready to ride.

Led by our great mate Mark Menhinnitt, CEO of Lend Lease, riders from across corporate Australia, including Michael Gatt from the newest member of the NCIE family TransGrid, knocked off a 60km journey around Sydney.

Photo: Mark Menhinnitt on the ride.

Rather than construct something completely new, the idea of the ride was to build cultural engagement and education opportunities into something that people were already doing. Lots of corporate leaders are cyclists, so instead of engaging them in the boardroom, where you are often competing with other priorities, it was a chance to add a solid cultural dimension to their daily well-being ritual. Too often, particularly though a disadvantage lens, culture is seen as something to be intimidated by or feared.

Normalising both contemporary and ancient cultural practice, and their expression provides a safer and more scalable experience. The hope is that the riders will not only talk about their enjoyment of the experience, but they will become advocates in their day to day conversations about the important cultural history of the places they and millions of others experience every day.

Photo: Riders checking out ancient rock carvings between Bondi & Tamarama.

Photo: Rohan Tobler, Rhys Wesser, Wayne Dragan, Ben Bowen

We have had interest from other places around Australia in further developing the ride, but we were very happy to start in Sydney because it’s the home of the NCIE and despite being the point of first contact and resistance, it has not only a rich cultural heritage but a thriving, but too often ignored, contemporary culture.

Photo: Over 30 cyclists took part in the ride.

Check out more photos from the ride on NCIE’s Facebook Page.
NCIE CEO, Jason Glanville 2012