The Arts

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Deb Mailman

Story: Deb Mailman

One of our favourite actors, Deb Mailman, is the face of the National Indigenous English Literacy and Numeracy Strategy.

Deb joins other great ambassadors such as footballers Nathan Blacklock and Michael O’Loughlin and gentleman crooner Jimmy Little. The program tries to help all you guys out there to do as well as you can in school.

But because Deb is doing so well, especially with her regular role as Kelly in The Secret Life of Us, it is a bit hard for her to get around to the schools to see some of the great work that is being done.

Deb knows how hard it can be to do well at school. Growing up in Mt Isa, she didn’t really know what she wanted to do with herself. She thought she would simply follow her two brothers and sister into the mines (the guys are boilermakers while her sister is an electrician) after leaving school.

Her friends at school thought Deb was bubbly and outgoing, but she says she had low self-esteem. To help her find some confidence, her mother suggested she do some acting while still at high school.

Little did her mum know what she started. Deb says she was lucky to have an amazing teacher ‘ her drama teacher, Denis Murphy ‘ who really encouraged her to study acting in Brisbane after leaving high school.

And as we all know, she is now one of Australia’s favourite actresses, and even has an AFI award to prove it. Good on you, Deb! She is living proof that school is cool!

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