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Te Wānanga o Aotearoa today announced Te Ururoa Flavell as the organisation’s new Chief Executive Officer.

Te Wānanga o Aotearoa chair Vanessa Eparaima said she is delighted to appoint someone with the experience Mr Flavell brings to the role.

“Te Ururoa has a strong background in Māori education as a leader in Māori language revitalisation and in leading Māori development.

He is widely respected across Māoridom and the political spectrum and has knowledge of government from his time as a Minister as well as extensive networks in Wellington and across communities throughout Aotearoa.

“Te Ururoa has a strong track record for his leadership and advocacy for Māori especially in education,” said Mrs Eparaima.

Te Wānanga o Aotearoa is the country’s second largest tertiary education provider, providing training and education to almost 32,000 tauira last year and employing more than 1700 staff throughout Aotearoa.

Mrs Eparaima said the wānanga, which provides education from certificate to masters and delivers 66% of all te reo Māori education in the tertiary sector, was excited by the skills and experience Te Ururoa brings to the role and his expertise as a te reo Māori advocate and practitioner.

“We have an essential part to play in lifting Māori participation and qualifications in te reo Māori and we have ambitious plans to enhance all our programmes and educational delivery, with a strong focus on quality teaching and digital learning.

“Te Ururoa brings a reputation of hard work and leading from the front alongside a background of highly capable leadership.”

Mr Flavell said he was looking forward to taking up the role after his time as an MP, co-leader of the Māori Party and Minister, most recently as Minister of Māori Development and Whānau Ora.

“I am proud that I was able to serve our people in Parliament and of the achievements that were made for Māori. I am passionate about Māori development and Māori success. My time as a politician has come to an end and will help me in my new role. My passion for Māori and for Māori success will continue at Te Wānanga o Aotearoa.

“Te Wānanga o Aotearoa has done a wonderful job in providing access into tertiary education for many people over the years and I am excited to be given the opportunity to advance the aspirations Te Wānanga o Aotearoa has for communities around Te Reo revitalisation, Māori education, and access to quality, affordable tertiary education,” Mr Flavell said.

“The challenge is to take Te Wānanga o Aotearoa to the next level, to refine and enhance all that we do,” Mr Flavell said.

Mrs Eparaima said Mr Flavell will start in his new role on 20 August, and replaces Dr Jim Mather who did not seek reappointment to the role and is stepping down after five years in the job.

“I want to acknowledge Jim for his leadership over the last five years. He has implemented a number of important organisational projects and has been a strong advocate for tauira success, and I thank him for his service and wish him well in his future mahi,” Mrs Eparaima said.


For more information or interviews contact James Ihaka, Communications Manager, Te Wānanga o Aotearoa on 027 801 2452.

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