Deng Thiak Adut (Author) Refugee advocate and lawyer Deng Thiak Adut arrived in Australia as a refugee in 1998. His first book, Songs of a War Boy, details his harrowing experience as a child soldier in Sudan. In 2016 he was selected to give the prestigious Australia Day Address at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. He is the co-founder of leading Sydney criminal law firm, AC Law Group, known for its commitment to the communities of Western Sydney. To honour his brother, Deng established the John Mac Foundation to further education and justice in Australia and Sudan, including providing university scholarships for people from refugee backgrounds. In 2017 he was named NSW Australian of the Year.Ben Mckelvey (Author) Ben Mckelvey is a freelance writer and editor from Sydney who has filed for Good Weekend, GQ, Voyeur, Rolling Stone, The Bulletin, Cosmo, Cleo and the Age and West Australian newspapers. Ben's previous gigs have included editing Sports&Style and Juice magazines, and working at the Sydney Morning Herald as a Senior Feature Writer. He has been embedded with the ADF in East Timor and Iraq, and has worked independently in Iran and Afghanistan.
Whether or not Australia deserves the praise and faith vested in us by Adut, he certainly makes one want to strive to live up to his vision of the nation he now so proudly calls home. - ArtsHubIn our oft overheated conversation about migrants, Songs of a War Boy seriously challenges our notions of what it means to be Australian. It's much less about genetic heritage than the fact that we are welcoming and free and live by the rule of law. Here, there's an immense pride in a citizenship that most of us take for granted. - Sydney Morning Herald