News | 4 July 2023
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Meet our mana whenua representatives

In 2021, Wellington City Councillors agreed to appoint two representatives of our Tākai Here partners to Council committees and have voting rights for the 2022-2025 triennium. Get to know our mana whenua representatives, Liz Kelly and Holden Hohaia.

Portrait of Wellington City Council mana whenua representative for Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o te Ika, Holden Hohaia. He is smiling in front of a white wall, wearing glasses, and is dressed in a black tee shirt and puffer vest.

Holden Hohaia

A life-long Wellingtonian, Holden Hohaia was appointed by the post settlement governance entity of his iwi, Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o te Ika.

Holden is a qualified lawyer and Māori language interpreter.

He is currently General Manager Te Tiriti Strategy at Manaaki Whenua (Landcare Research).

In previous years he held a similar role on our Council’s executive leadership team and spent some time as Support Manager for CitiOperations business unit.

He is currently the Chair of the Ngāti Maru Post Settlement Entity – Te Kāhui Maru, and is the immediate past Chair of Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o te Ika.

He has also served on a number of boards, for example Experience Wellington, one of our Council Controlled Organisations, as well as being an advisory trustee for Te Aro Pā Trust, and a director for Predator Free Wellington.

Holden is passionate about his Ngāti Maru and Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o te Ika identity, which connects him both to Te Whanganui-a-Tara, and to his ancestral homeland in Taranaki.

Portrait of Wellington City Council mana whenua representative for Ngāti Toa Rangatira. She is dressed in dark red and wearing a necklace, smiling with a blue wall behind her.

Liz Kelly

Our other mana whenua representative, Liz Kelly, is a former Porirua Deputy Mayor and represents Ngāti Toa Rangatira on Wellington City Council’s committees.

She brings vast knowledge from her former local government roles, where she worked within Strategy and Finance, the District Plan Review, Employment and Economic Development, Joint Waste Water and Landfill and the Sister Cities portfolios.

Liz has held leadership positions for many years and has developed extensive management experience across a diverse background including health, social services and education.

She has established a successful family business that continues to grow and actively promotes and supports Māori business.

She is a former Certified Resource Management Commissioner, a current Justice of Peace and remains the CEO for the Porirua Whānau Centre, where she has grown the Trust to include the establishment of a registered social housing provider as well as a registered Early Childhood Education (ECE) for 65 tamariki.

Liz is passionate about ensuring a better future for our mokopuna and generations to come.