Te Amokura works with businesses, the government and communities to find simple, innovative and sustainable solutions to complex issues and problems.
We are a boutique Maori firm of professionals bringing a depth of experience from the private and public sectors to deliver quality outcomes for our clients.
TE RAU KUPENGA
After graduating from Auckland University with an LLB, Te Rau practiced law in Auckland and Wellington, specialising in litigation. For the past ten years, Te Rau has held a number of senior executive positions in the private and public sector, including Deputy Secretary for the Environment, where he helped to lead the Crown’s position on Iwi Rights and Interests in Freshwater, Deputy Chief Executive at the Ministry of Housing and Urban Development, and Deputy Secretary Education. Te Rau also holds a number of governance roles, including Director of Te Runanganui o Ngati Porou, Trustee of Trust Tairawhiti and Trustee of Nga Taonga – Sound and Vision. In 2016, Te Rau co-authored Mauri Ora – Wisdom from the Maori world
PRINCIPAL - Auckland
Lynette has extensive experience in the Maori broadcasting and media sector.
A graduate from Waiariki Journalism, she spent her early career in radio and print with Mana media, Ruia Mai and Radio Waatea, before moving to television journalism and producer roles with TVNZ and Maori Television.
Over the past 15 years at Maori Television Lynette has developed a close rapport with key leaders within Te Ao Maori.
Her recent roles at Maori Television as Head of News and Current Affairs and News Planning charged her with the responsibility to co-design and implement the multiplatform approach to news dissemination.
Lynette has executive level knowledge of operational Human Resources disciplines.
She has experience in financial literacy, people management and high-level strategic design.
PRINCIPAL - Wellington
Sarah has spent the last 15 years working in the financial services industry, most recently at Māori investment advisory firm, Taupo Moana Funds. Over the 9 years she worked at Taupo Moana, her roles included Investment Analyst, Investment Advisor, Investment Operations Manager and most recently General Manager.
Sarah has also worked in London (Northern Trust), Vancouver and at Perpetual Trust in Wellington, involved in funds management, trust administration and investment advice.
Sarah holds a Bachelor of Commerce and Administration majoring in Money and Finance, and Economics from Victoria University.
Taimania has undergraduate degrees in Arts (Social Policy)(Hons) and Business Studies (Economics) and a Master of Arts (Social Policy)(Hons) from Massey University. Before joining Te Amokura, Taimania was a Senior Policy Analyst at the Ministry for the Environment, she also spent time working as an advisor to the Chief Executive. Taimania also has experience working for iwi and community organisations, focusing mostly on social development.
Taimania was raised in Gisborne. Her whānau are from Rangitukia and Tikitiki on the right side of the Waiapu valley!
Doug has worked with, and around, the public sector for over 50-years. He has a wide network spanning the length and breadth of the country. He has held numerous senior leadership positions, including being a member of the New Zealand Parole Board, Chief Executive of what is now Te Matatini, and CE of the Māori Education Trust. Doug has a BA and Diploma in Social Work from Victoria University, and is a licenced interpreter of Te Reo Maori.
Born in Taihape and raised in Wellington, Hollie graduated from Te Panekiretanga o te Reo Māori (Institute of Excellence in Māori Language), has with a BA and GDipArts from Victoria University and the University of Hawai'i (Mānoa), and is a licenced Toi Reo Māori translator certified under Te Ture mō Te Reo Māori 2016. Hollie has worked in public sector policy design and implementation over the last 10 years across education, training and employment, and been involved significantly in the Māori language sector, specialising in intervention logic for language planning and policy design informed by the application of sociolinguistic and language revitalisation theories. Hollie has whakapapa to Ngāti Tamakōpiri, Whanganui nui tonu, Ngāi Tahu, Rangitāne O Wairau, me Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairarapa.
After completing a BCom at the University of Auckland Kara spent several years in manufacturing management with Nestle. Over the past fifteen years Kara has held executive roles in retail with JB HiFi, Warehouse Stationery and The Warehouse. His most recent role as GM of Warehouse Mobile involved the creation & launch of NZ's leading virtual network in partnership with 2 degrees.
An analytical and strategic thinker Kara has a range of core competencies including sourcing, project management, consumer insight, negotiation and ideation.
Kara was born and raised in Auckland and has whakapapa links to Ngāpuhi and Ngātiwai.
He is Advisory Chair for the boy's hostel of InZone Education and a keen coach of cricket & soccer.
Cath has worked at senior levels of the Public Sector in New Zealand and Australia. Her experience spans policy development, leading legislation initiatives, the design and implementation of stakeholder engagement processes and leading and working with teams to build capability and improve performance. Most recently, she led Te Ture mō Te Reo Māori (Māori Language Act) which was passed in 2016. A critical thinker, experienced in navigating diverse and complex situations, she has proven experience of working both within Māori and government contexts.
Arihia graduated from Victoria University with a BA in te reo Maori and linguistics and is a licensed Toi Reo Maori translator. She has a background in communications, content development, production management, editing and publishing which all reflects her creative commitment to te reo Māori. Arihia has worked with many clients to develop creative marketing ideas for Māori language revitalisation. She understands the importance of integrating all communication initiatives.
Arihia has written, edited and published in the Māori language everything from children’s books to contributions to He Muka the prestige publication of the Māori Language Commission. She’s also written copy and designed collateral for major campaigns promoting te reo Māori and language planning.
Tia has extensive leadership experience with both public sector and iwi organisations. This has included roles with Te Puni Kōkiri, the State Services Commission, the Waitangi Tribunal and Te Taura Whiri. Most recently she has played a lead role in developing Crown capacity to support the Māori Crown Relationship for Te Arawhiti.
Tia is an expert in designing and implementing relationship management processes/systems, particularly for iwi/Māori engagement. Tia also has governance experience and is currently a member of Te Mana O Ngāti Rangitihi, Chair of the associated Te Mana o Ngāti Rangitihi Charitable Trust and was also appointed to the Chiropractic Board, Te Poari Kaikorohiti O Aotearoa, in 2020.
Tia’s whakapapa connections are to Te Arawa Waka, primarily Ngāti Rangitihi, Tūhourangi Ngāti Wāhiao, and Tūwharetoa.
Eli is a graduate of Victoria University, graduating in 2016 with a BCom in Management and GDip in Tourism. Eli has whakapapa links to Ngāi Tahu, Ngāi Tāmanuhiri, Ngāi Tuhoe and Ngāti Whātua ki Ōrākei. He was raised in Tūranganui-a-Kiwa.
Prior to joining Te Amokura, Eli spent 3-years working in the public sector with a focus on policy design and implementation. An innovative and creative thinker, Eli has worked across business feasibility, legislation initiatives as well as policy development in the Māori language and youth development sectors. Eli is passionate about traditional Māori knowledge systems, in particular, and utilising those systems to provide insights that develop solutions and approaches that achieve best outcomes for Māori.
Karli graduated from Victoria University with an LLB/BA (Social Policy and History (Hons)). Prior to joining Te Amokura Karli worked for Victoria University of Wellington's Faculty of Law as the Kaitakawaenga Ture - the Māori Law Students' Co-ordinator. During her time at University Karli was involved with Ngā Rangahautira - the Māori Law Students Association, Wellington Community Justice Project and Community Law Wellington as a Volunteer and Advocate at Epuni Care and Protection Residence. Karli was also born and raised in the thriving metropolis of Gisborne.
Charles has over 20-years experience in the operations and manufacturing sector working at Taylor Preston, Downer and printing.com. His strengths are in cross cultural management, lean systems and compliance and audit. Graduating with a Master of Business Administration from Victoria University, Charles has spent the last few years predominantly in the not-for-profit sector managing stakeholder engagement, social enterprise start-ups and trying to drive better Māori housing outcomes in his home community of Whanganui. Charles enjoys contributing back to his secondary school and Iwi through his governance roles as a Trustee of Whanganui Collegiate Old Boys and Girls Association and as Trustee of Hinengakau Mātua Whangai Iwi Social Services. Charles has whakapapa links to Ngāti Rangi and Whanganui.
LEAH IHAIA-TE UA
Prior to joining Te Amokura, Leah worked in the private sector, primarily in Insurance & Telecommunications. With a law degree from Auckland University of Technology, Leah has experience in data analytics, research and strategic design thinking. Leah was raised in the small northland town of Kaihu, before moving to her tribal hometown of Taupo. She has has whakapapa links to Ngāti Tūwharetoa and Te Aitanga-a-Māhaki.
Tel: 022 492 8553
Awhina graduated from the University of Auckland with a BA (Māori Studies) and BHSc with a focus on Public Health and Māori health research. During her time at university Awhina was involved in Ngā Tauira Māori (the Māori Students Association) and MAPAS (the Māori and Pacific Admission Scheme) within the Faculty of Medical and Health Sciences. Before joining Te Amokura, Awhina interned at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade working in the multilateral space on environmental issues. Awhina was proudly born and raised in Gisborne, with whānau ties to Tikitiki and Rangitukia.
Heemi graduated from Victoria University in 2018 with a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in both Psychology and Te Reo Māori. Sincegraduating, Heemi has worked in Whangarei as a regional advisor in the public sector, where he has gained valuable experience and learnings, particularly working with his people in Te Tai Tokerau. Heemi has skills in project management, relationship brokering, strategic engagement and effective consultation. Heemi has a passion for Māori health and well-being, including mental health, and encouraging positive change within Māori whanau and communities.
Before joining Te Amokura Nate spent 8 years working in the not for profit sector holding various leadership roles managing teams, staff, interns and volunteers. Nate has a passion for Te Reo Māori and Te Ao Maori and trying to effect broader and positive outcomes for Māori. Nate was raised in Taupo and Porirua and has whakapapa links to Ngati Porou, Ngati Kahungunu and Tuhoe.
Herewini has whakapapa links to Ngāti Kahungunu/Rangitane ki Wairarapa, Ngāti Rongomai, Ngāti Whakaaue, Ngāti Rārua and Vaimoso (Samoa). Born and raised in the Wairarapa, his interests remain with his people and with Te iwi Māori whānui. Herewini has completed an LLB and a Bachelor of Arts, majoring in Te Reo and Māori studies. In 2020, Herewini was the president of Ngā Rangahautira (Māori Law Students’ Association at Te Herenga Waka, Victoria University of Wellington).
TE WEHI WRIGHT
Te Wehi Wright belongs to Te Arawa, Ngāruahinerangi, Ngāti Raukawa and Ngāti Kahungunu ki Te Wairoa and is a product of Kōhanga Reo and Kura Kaupapa Māori Aho Matua. He completed a conjoint BA/LLB majoring in te reo Māori, Māori studies and Resource Management at Te Herenga Waka, Victoria University of Wellington and has spent the past 5 years working in the private sector, focusing on measuring and building the cultural capital of organisations. Before joining Te Amokura, Te Wehi worked for Tuaropaki Trust, one of the most successful intergenerational trusts in Aotearoa, specialising in increasing the cultural capital of the Trust. He has project management experience and has worked in strategy design, innovation, engagement and policy.
Born in Tāmaki and raised amongst indigenous populations in Tuba City, Arizona (Navajo Nation) and Lāʻie, Hawaiʻi (Kānaka Maoli), Sala returned to Aotearoa in 2020 having completed a Juris Doctor, Master’s in Public Administration, and BA in Political Science from the Brigham Young Universities in Utah and Hawai’i.
Sala has spent the last few years honing her skills in administration, research and writing, policy analysis and project management, and Experience Design & Management (ExDM). Passionate about transformative leadership and cross-cultural understanding, Sala is technically trained in intercultural peacebuilding and Alternative Dispute Resolution.
Sala has whakapapa to Ngāti Whitikaupeka, Ngāti Tamakōpiri, Ngāti Pikiao and Whakaue, as well as Hawaiʻi, Samoa and Tonga.
Born in Wellington, and raised in Porirua, Wirangi has whakapapa links to Ngāti Kahungunu, Rongowhakaata, Ngāti Ruanui and Ngāti Toa Rangatira. Having completed a Bachelor of Architecture in 2019, Wirangi is currently studying towards a Masters of Architecture at Victoria University of Wellington. Wirangi hopes to work closely with whānau and Iwi/Māori organisations to help them realise their housing aspirations, particularly with respect to papakāinga developments and urban planning. Wirangi is energetic and eager to effect positive change for Māori.
Rawinia (aka, Ra) enjoyed a long career in the public sector, primarily in administration and finance roles, having worked previously with the Department of Māori Affairs, Te Tira Ahu Iwi (Iwi Transition Agency), Te Puni Kōkiri, the Office of the Māori Trustee and Hato Pāora College in Feilding. Ra is married to Vaughn and has two sons, Sonny and Luther, who keep her just as busy as the Te Amokura whanau.
Rotorua is “home” for Ra where she has whakapapa links to Te Arawa, Ngati Whatua and Ngai Tahu.