I tipu ake au ki te motu o Waiheke me Wānaka i te Waipounamu hoki. Nō Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Mahanga, Ingarangi me Itari ōku tīpuna.
I grew up on Waiheke Island and also in Wānaka in the South Island. I am of Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Mahanga, English and Italian descent.
I studied a Bachelor of Arts in history and media studies at the University of Auckland. In my third year, I took a history paper on the Treaty of Waitangi and decided to explore New Zealand history further with a Master of Arts in history. My thesis was on peace-making between the colonial government and iwi Maori during the Taranaki war.
I started my career at AT working part-time Customer Service Representative at the Smales Farm Bus Station. The 6-10am shifts suited my university schedule and it was a great way for me to get away from the thesis for a bit.
I’d heard good things about AT’s Māori Policy and engagement team and thought it was a good chance to observe mana whenua and mataawaka engagement with local government. The experiences I have in this team will be invaluable regardless of where I eventually land.
I’m helping with adding on-board audio to our buses in both English and Te Reo Māori. This is a much-needed function for Blind and Low vision customers on our network and it’s been a privilege to be part of something that will have such a lasting impact. I’ve also been helping to design resources and run workshops on the Treaty of Waitangi, Māori engagement, and te reo me ōna tikanga Māori. In this role, you can actually make change.
Whanaungatanga. The kumara vines in both the Māori Engagement Team and Ngā Kaihoe runs deep through the organisation. We are involved in absolutely everything and it’s been enjoyable developing and building off internal networks
Be brave enough to step outside your comfort zone – I have a history degree and I started out at AT helping to develop a cash management process at Customer Service Centres. I picked up some vital skills and made some strong connections in the process.