Kia ora. Ko Holden Hohaia tōku ingoa, nō Ngāti Maru me Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o te Ika ahau. I am humbled to have been appointed by my iwi Post Settlement Governance Entity as one of two iwi representatives on the Council. It is said that the kumara should not speak of its own sweetness, but I share here a little bit about myself so that you might know what skills and experience I bring to the table.
I was born, raised and have lived all my life in Wellington. I am a qualified lawyer, but have spent most of my career in central and local government. I am currently the General Manager Māori Partnerships at Manaaki Whenua (Landcare Research), one of the seven Crown Research Institutes. Some years ago I held a similar role on Council’s executive leadership team. While working at the Council I also spent some time as Support Manager for CitiOperations Busines Unit, and led the build project to relocate the depot from Torrens Tce up to the Landfill and move the recycling centre to where it is now. I was also fortunate during this time to gain a good working knowledge of our landfill and broader operations around recycling and waste minimisation.
I am currently the Chair of the Ngāti Maru Post Settlement Entity – Te Kāhui Maru, and am the immediate past Chair of Taranaki Whanui ki te Upoko o te Ika. I have served on a number of other boards, for example, Experience Wellington, one of our Council Controlled Organisations. I am also currently an advisory trustee for Te Aro Pa Trust and a director for Predator Free Wellington.
I am a qualified Māori language interpreter and am passionate about my Ngāti Maru and Taranaki Whanui ki te Upoko o te Ika identity, which connects me both down here to Te Whanganui a Tara but also back to my ancestral Maru homeland in Taranaki. I am immensely proud to be part of Pōneke and this Council with Tory as our Mayor. But mostly I am humbled to have been called on to help make our city a great place to live, work, play and raise a whānau.