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Pouwhakahaere departing to take on a new challenge

Pouwhakahaere/Chief Executive of Te Kotahitanga o Te Atiawa, Hemi Sundgren, will be leaving the iwi organisation after six years of service through its crucial establishment period.

“Hemi is highly regarded by the Board as an accomplished iwi leader who acts with humility and the highest level of integrity – a real taonga.  He has immense capability and will be difficult to replace but he goes with our utmost gratitude and tautoko”, said Te Kotahitanga o Te Atiawa Trust Pouwhakarae/Chair, Liana Poutu.

Hemi joined the Trust in 2014 as Transition Manager and steered the iwi through the establishment phase of the Post-Settlement Governance Entity.  In 2016, Hemi was appointed as Pouwhakahaere/Chief Executive and has been instrumental in establishing strategic partnerships and working closely with the commercial company to optimise property and settlement rights to ensure a structurally and financially stable foundation for Te Atiawa.  The Trust now has a diversified portfolio of assets worth $110m.

Under Hemi’s leadership, there has been significant growth and investment in people capability. The Trust is proud to employ an incredible team of high calibre kaimahi who are themselves leaders in their respective fields of expertise.

In 2019, Hemi oversaw the development and implementation of the Ka Uruora programme which includes a whanau savings programme, financial education programme and a housing programme to support whanau to enter homeownership.  Hemi’s artistic talents are at the core of the Ka Uruora and other Te Atiawa brands.

Hemi Sundgren said “It’s the right time for me to move on.  This is a very exciting time for Te Atiawa and I am confident that what has been achieved over the past six years, has provided a solid foundation for the next stage of the Trust’s vision.  I look forward to witnessing the future of the Trust and its subsidiaries as the iwi progresses into an exciting stage of growth beyond the post-settlement establishment phase”.

Ms Poutu said that Hemi will leave the Trust at the beginning of October 2020 to take up a new challenge and role with Tourism NZ, and that the Trust will commence a recruitment process for the position of Pouwhakahaere/Chief Executive shortly.

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