Dr Will Edwards
Will is a Director of Taumata Associates a Māori public health research and development consultancy based in South Taranaki. As the previous chair of Te Korowai o Ngāruahine he led the Iwi Data Leadership Group for the National Iwi Chairs’ Forum representing 75 iwi.
Will serves on a number of boards including Te Korowai o Ngāruahine, Parinihi ki Waitotara Incorporation, Tuiora and Taranaki Futures. He also serves on the boards of New Plymouth’s Te Kopae Piripono Māori immersion early childhood education centre, the Hāwera High School Board of Trustees, and Te Reo o Taranaki. He is chair of the Tangahoe Tribal Trust and is on the Health Research Council of New Zealand Māori Health Committee and is a Co-investigator on the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study.
His PhD in Public Health focused on Māori Positive Ageing. Will descends from Taranaki, Ngāruahine, Tāngahoe, Pakakohi and Ngāti Ruanui iwi.
Professor Helen Nicholson
After graduating from the University of Bristol, Professor Nicholson worked as a doctor in hospital and community settings before taking up an academic position in the Department of Anatomy at Bristol. She moved to the University of Otago in 2000 to become Professor of Anatomy and subsequently became head of the Department of Anatomy. In 2007 she was appointed Dean of the Otago School of Medical Sciences (now School of Biomedical Sciences), and in 2011 was the Acting Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Enterprise) for six months. Professor Nicholson was appointed as Pro-Vice-Chancellor (International) in February 2014. In this role she was responsible for the strategic development of the University’s international profile involving recruiting and supporting international students; enriching internationalisation of the curriculum; and fostering partnerships with some of the top universities in the world so that the University of Otago sustains its role as a leading teaching and research organisation in the international arena. Professor Nicholson was appointed inaugural Deputy Vice-Chancellor (External Engagement) in mid-2015. The current role focusses on strengthening external engagement, raising the profile of the University of Otago and attracting high quality domestic and international students to study at Otago. Helen’s current external appointments include membership of the Confucius Institute Board, the Executive of the International Federation of Associations of Anatomists and she is an Associate Trustee of Men’s Health Trust New Zealand.
Dr David Schaaf
David is currently a Public Health Advisor at Counties Manukau Health DHB. Prior to that, he was at the Ministry of Health implementing ‘Ala Mo’ui: Pathways to Pacific Health and Well-being 2014 – 2018 which is the Ministry’s strategic document for monitoring the Health Sectors performance on improving the health of Pacific people in New Zealand. Previously, he had worked at the Ministry of Pacific Island Affairs as Principal Research Analyst. David has been a senior research fellow at the School of Population Health at the University of Auckland. His research interest has been on chronic disease prevention.
Adrienne von Tunzelmann
Adrienne has served on a variety of government and non-profit boards and charitable trusts, which has included the board of Pharmac, an interest she has continued as an appointed member of Pharmac’s Consumer Advisory Committee. Her other governance and community roles include the boards of Age Concern NZ (national Vice President) and Osteoporosis New Zealand, the Bay of Plenty DHB Consumer Council and the Tauranga Community Housing Trust (Patron). Following her 14 years serving on the Council of Te Whare Wananga o Awanuiarangi, she has taken up an appointment as the Council’s External Adviser. Past roles have included President of the Tauranga Chamber of Commerce, trustee of the University of Waikato Foundation and Bay of Plenty Community Trust and Chair of the NZ Women’s Refuge Foundation. Her professional position as Principal Consultant with independent public policy specialist firm McKinlay Douglas Ltd follows a senior executive career in the public sector and in Parliament, with experience in government policymaking and legislation. Adrienne holds Masters degrees in Economics (Canterbury) and Public Policy (Victoria) and is a Chartered Fellow of the NZ Institute of Directors. Adrienne was made a Companion of the Queen’s Service Order for her services to governance and the community in the 2016 Queen’s Birthday Honours.
Glenis Philips-Barbara (Ngāti Porou Ngāti Uepōhatu Clan McDonald) has a lifelong interest in the sustainability of Māori knowledge systems and practices, especially te reo Māori, and has worked in the public service for thirty years in a range of leadership roles spanning education, research, language revitalisation & child welfare.
She Chairs Te Tairāwhiti Arts Festival Board and serves on the Board of SuperGrans Tairāwhiti, Tōnui, and Tairāwhiti Museum. She is also a member of the Veterans Affairs Board.
She was appointed inaugural Assistant Māori Commissioner for Children in November 2020, and is currently co-leading the Office of the Children’s Commissioner together with Judge Andrew Becroft.
Glenis is a certified Executive Coach, holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology & Māori Studies, a Post Graduate Diploma in Professional Supervision and a Master’s Degree in Professional Creative Practice.
Professor Les Oxley
Les Oxley is Professor in Economics, University of Waikato; Adjunct Professor, Curtin University; Affiliate at Motu; Research Associate, Centre for Applied Macroeconomic Analysis (CAMA); and Research Affiliate, Centre for Economic History (CEH), ANU.
He is an Elected Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand (RSNZ) and his research interests include time series econometrics; economic history; the economics of innovation; health economics; energy economics; environmental economics and economic well-being. He was Chair of the Business and Economics Panel of the 2018 PBRF research assessment exercise.
He is Co-Editor in Chief and joint Founding Editor of the Journal of Economic Surveys and a Board Member of the New Zealand Institute for Economic Research (NZIER). He has published on a wide range of topics and won six Marsden Funded research projects.
Traditional Western science dominates in Aotearoa New Zealand, but Rauru Kirikiri has been instrumental in embedding mātauranga Māori into science across the CRIs and universities and beyond, where it provides unique perspectives. He has demonstrated outstanding leadership in bringing te ao Māori into science and tertiary education. In 2020, Rauru was made a Companion of the Royal Society of New Zealand Te Apārangi.
Rauru Kirikiri holds a Master of Arts in Anthropology from The University of Auckland, where he also lectured. He has had various academic activities at universities in both New Zealand and Australia. He has an extensive Māori and science research network including notable roles at Manaaki Whenua Landcare Research; Alan Wilson Centre for Molecular Ecology and Evolution; The Centre for Sustainability at Otago University; Ministry of Foreign Affairs; State Services Commission; Department of Māori Affairs; trustee of the World Wildlife Fund in addition to serving on several committees.
In 1992, Rauru Kirikiri joined the newly-established CRI, Manaaki Whenua – Landcare Research as the first senior manager in the science system reporting directly to the CEO for ensuring commitments to Te Tiriti were honoured; establishing partnerships with Māori; and building capability in tikanga and te reo Māori. Rauru Kirikiri held this responsibility until 2006. Rau’s leadership and mentoring has now seen Treaty responsibilities elevated to senior roles across the CRI sector and beyond.
He is currently the Deputy Chairperson of Te Mana Whakahaere o Awanuiārangi.
[Photo: Te Mana Whakahaere o Awanuiārangi]