Councillor James Woods has served his community for eight years as the longest serving chairperson for the Maningrida Local Authority. He was born in Katherine in the Northern Territory and was part of the Stolen Generation that the Department of Aboriginal Affairs moved from Katherine to the Retta Dixon Home located along Bagot Road in Darwin.
He did his initial schooling in Darwin before moving to Queensland where he completed his high school education at Warwick Boarding School. While in high school, Councillor Woods worked as a pumpkin picker in farms in Tully Queensland over the school holidays. After high school, Councillor Woods went on to university in Toowoomba, Queensland where he earned a Diploma in Early Childhood Education. He then went on to complete his BTEC while living in Queensland and the Northern Territory.
Councillor Woods moved to Maningrida with the local band “Letter Stick Band” who later became his in-laws when he married into the family who are from Blyth River. He has lived in Maningrida for 27 years and is blessed with six children and eight grandchildren.
In Maningrida, he has worked for the Council, Maningrida College, Bawinanga Aboriginal
Corporation (BAC) and currently Mala’la Health Service Aboriginal Corporation. In addition to this, Councillor Woods is a member of the Defence Force (a position that he has held for 18 years) and is the Deputy Unit Officer for Emergency Services in Maningrida and is the chairperson for the Maningrida AFL Committee. He is passionate about supporting communities and advocating for essential services to be improved in remote communities. Councillor Woods is always available to assist in any way that he can.