New Deputy Chief Executive looking forward to Education Role

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The newly-appointed deputy chief executive of Taranaki’s polytech is looking forward to seeing Māori students succeeding.

Allie Hēmara-Wahanui was welcomed to her new role as deputy chief executive and kaiārahi at Te Kura Mataini o Taranaki/The Western Institure of Technology at Taranaki (Witt) with a pōwhiri on Monday.

"It was a spectacular day,” Witt chief executive John Snook said.

The purpose of Hēmara-Wahanui's role is to support the chief executive to ensure Witt delivers on its purpose and better meets the needs of ākonga Māori students.

“The government are prepared to centralise health and vocational education and training to achieve equitable outcomes for Māori and Pasifika people,” she said in a statement.

“That sends a clear message that the current regime is falling short and new solutions are required.”

Hēmara-Wahanui has worked in iwi and Māori development for more than 30 years.

Recently, she was the pouhautū (general manager) for Te Korowai o Ngāruahine Trust.

Prior to that, she was a general manager of shareholder engagements for Parininihi ki Waitōtara and the inaugural iwi liaison advisor for the South Taranaki District Council. She also managed contracts for the Māori Language Commission and Te Puni Kōkiri .

“The Taranaki landscape is changing,” she said.

“Taranaki iwi have settled their historical treaty claims with the Crown, and they are developing and implementing strategies that will grow their assets and invest in the wellbeing of uri (descendants).

“Iwi have a strong sense of community and their initiatives will benefit the wider community as well.”

She said the transition to a low-emissions future, increased Māori participation in civic leadership and Covid-19 were other changes that continued to challenge the ways organisations operated and engaged with their communities.

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