I am the Ministry’s Chief Executive. I liaise with Ministers and oversee the running of the Ministry, developing and facilitating new initiatives for the Ministry and cultural sector. My job is varied, and reflects the diversity of the sector and the Ministry’s work.
Before joining the Ministry, I held Deputy Secretary positions at the Ministry of Economic Development and other senior roles at The Treasury and Washington DC’s World Bank.
History and literature are great interests of mine. I’ve studied journalism, history and politics, and hold a Masters degree from Yale University in Public and Private Management.
Corporate Services Branch Manager
I joined the Ministry as Finance and Administration Manager in 1992. The role broadened into Corporate Services Manager as the Ministry grew, and I now head the Corporate Services Branch, overseeing the running of key support services including communications, finance, human resources, information management and legal. The Corporate Services Branch is also responsible for accountability documents and reports to the Government about the outputs of the Ministry.
I’ve worked in government for the last 30 years, and before joining the Ministry I had finance roles in the Department of Internal Affairs, the Department of Māori Affairs and the Ministry of Transport.
I have a BCA and a Master of Public Management from Victoria University of Wellington.
Deputy Chief Executive,
Cultural Policy Branch Manager
I am the Deputy Chief Executive and the Cultural Policy Branch Manager, leading a team of people who provide advice to Ministers on a challenging range of issues, including: supporting a vibrant and viable cultural sector, demonstrating the contribution of heritage, arts and broadcasting activity to New Zealand’s economy, and how best to protect and ensure access to our cultural heritage.
Before joining the Ministry in July 2009, I spent a year in Ireland reviewing and working with a partnership programme aimed at supporting marginalised communities. In a similar vein, my policy roles in New Zealand have focused on bringing the voice of particular sectors into mainstream policy development. I’ve worked for the Ministry of Social Development as General Manager responsible for the Office for Disability Issues, the Office for Senior Citizens and the Office for the Community and Voluntary Sector, and earlier as Policy Manager with the Ministry for Women’s Affairs. I am a life member of the New Zealand Childcare Association and chaired the Board of the Early Childhood Development Unit /Nga Kaitaunaki Kohungahunga for its first three years. My cultural passions include theatre, dance and film. I have a BA in English from Victoria University of Wellington and a Masters in Public Administration through the Australia and New Zealand School of Government (ANZSOG) programme.
Pou Ārahi Whakahaere
I’ve worked as a strategic leadership, communications and management consultant for 25 years, including roles in Television New Zealand, the Department of Māori Affairs, Industry New Zealand, for iwi runanga and tribal trust boards, and for Māori and community health and research and economic development organisations. From 1993 to 1996 I was the inaugural Chief Executive of Te Māngai Pāho. In my role as Pou Ārahi Whakahaere at the Ministry, I continue to strengthen the Ministry's Māori engagement strategy Te Rautaki Taonga Māori and provide leadership across the sector.
I have a passion for the written and spoken word, films, music and art history, so I've landed in a great workplace.
My iwi affiliations are Ngāpuhi, Te Aupouri, Ngāti Kahu and Ngāti Porou.
I hold a Masters of Business Administration from Massey University and am a graduate of the Paulo Freire Institute for the Development of People in Paris. I've also taught at Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi.
Heritage Services Branch Manager
I am the Heritage Services Branch Manager. Our Branch manages government’s involvement in a range of heritage activities, projects, publications and websites. Key among our projects at the moment is managing the WW100 programme, and the construction of Memorial Park. I was a foundation member of the Ministry’s precursor, the Ministry of Cultural Affairs, which was established in 1991. Prior to that time, I had worked for the Education and Internal Affairs departments. My subsequent career has also involved positions away from the Ministry at the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet.
I have worked in policy, communications and management roles. I have a particular interest in issues of nationhood and civics education.
I hold an Honours degree in English Literature from Victoria University, and have also studied public relations at Massey University.