Hēmi is of Māori and Cook Islands descent and a father of four, married to the love, rock and anchor of his life, Tracy. Just prior to joining the Ihi Research and Development team, Hēmi worked for Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu as a Kaiārahi Kaitoko - Team Leader supporting the educational aspirations and goals of Ngāi Tahu whānui and Papatipu Rūnanga. Hēmi has been a member of the CYWC (Canterbury Youth Workers Collective) for over 20 years and worked with young people, whānau and the wider community through a range of different roles and over the years he’s attained formal qualifications in Social Work, Teaching, Te Reo Māori, Business Management and post-graduate papers in Public Health.
For many years Hēmi has offered professional supervision to Youth Workers and continues to provide cultural support via Te Tiriti o Waitangi and cultural responsiveness training for Youth Work organisations. He’s a member on the Board of a local Youth Work organisation, Te Ora Hou Ōtautahi and a Team Leader for Scope, an assessment and self-review framework aimed at supporting Youth Work organisations to acknowledge or enhance their systems and practice to better support Young People and also a Trustee with the recently established Scope Aotearoa Charitable Trust. Hemi is contracted by Te Pūtahitanga o Te Waipounamu as a Whānau Enterprise Coach and he describes this as an immense privilege to assist local Māori enterprises and entrepreneurs. Hēmi has held positons as parent representative on Boards of Trustees for both a Primary and Secondary Schools during which time he was also an active member of each School’s Komiti Māori and Pasifika to further his commitment to Iwi, Māori, whānau and Pasifika communities.
Previous positions Hēmi has held with Boards and Committees include Deputy Chair of the Waikato/Tainui Taurahere Group for Christchurch, Board Member of Crichton Cobbers Youth & Community Trust, Chair of the Māori Inter-Agency Network Group and Committee Member of the Cook Islands Trust – Turama Kuki Airani. Hēmi has completed training with the Institute of Directors and the ‘Strengths Finders’ course as a means of enhancing my skills as a Board member, mentor, supervisor and coach. Following the 2011 earthquakes in Canterbury, Hēmi was the Co-chair of the Maniapoto Whānau ki Ōtautahi Hub, supporting the relief effort for Ngāti Maniapoto whānui living in Canterbury affected by the quakes.
In 2014 Hēmi attended the ‘World Indigenous Conference in Education’ hosted in Oahu/Hawaii where he outlined the strategic aspects, drivers and influence of the He Toki ki te Rika model as an indigenous-led (Ngāi Tahu) trades and construction initiative, which also included a national roadshow to various locations across New Zealand, presenting at research and tertiary education, vocational and industry training seminars. The following year Hēmi attended the AERA (American Education Research Association) Conference in Chicago where he again presented on He Toki ki te Rika – Māori leadership in trades initiative with a focus on the concept of ‘Collective Impact’ and the influence this initiative has as an Iwi-led consortium.
To stay grounded and to relax, Hēmi enjoys reading science fiction novels, ongoing development of his creative interests in Māori sculpture, carving and illustrations, learning Te Reo Māori and aspects of his Māori and Cook Islands culture. Being actively involved with kapahaka/cultural performances and volunteering his time to support Youth and Community events. With his partner Tracy, keeping up with their children’s sport, music, art and kapahaka interests is a relished commitment. When Hemi has time, he gets to ride his ‘Harley Davidson’ motorcycle with other members of the Tribal Nations Motorcycle Club to bring awareness to important issues like Youth Suicide, Stopping Violence, Respect for Women and other community related events across Aotearoa.
Education & Qualifications
-Bachelor of Applied Business in Māori Organisational Leadership 2014
University of Otago
-Post-Graduate Certificate in Public Health 2013
Te Wānanga o Aotearoa
-Diploma in Te Ara Reo 2010
University of Canterbury
-Diploma in Adult Teaching and Learning 2008
Christchurch Polytechnic Institute of Technology
-Certificate in Māori Language 2005
University of Canterbury
-Certificate in Social Work 1998
-Member of Aotearoa National Evaluation Association.
-Board member with Te Ora Hou Ōtautahi
-Trustee with the Scope Charitable Trust Aotearoa