• Napier City Council appoints two "key" people for new internal Directorate

Napier City Council appoints two "key" people for new internal Directorate

The appointment of two new staff to Napier City Council's recently formed internal Directorate will help the organisation develop their cultural values and needs internally, Chief Executive Steph Rotarangi says.

Beverley Kemp-Harmer and Hilary Prentice will be in the roles of Te Kaiwhakahaere Hononga Māori for Te Waka Rangapū. On Monday, they were formally welcomed at a pōwhiri at Pukemokimoki Marae. 

Steph said both Beverley and Hilary will bring a wealth of skills to the organisation.

“Their appointments come at a really significant time as we engage with our community ahead of consultation on whether to establish Māori wards for Napier. However, I recognise that Māori wards aren’t the only opportunity we have to increase Māori participation in decision-making.”

Beverley comes to Council after leading Te Whare Wananga o Aotearoa for Hawke’s Bay. She is well known locally and has status as a kaikaranga (matriarch) with many tangata whenua o Ngāti Kahungunu, Steph said.

Hilary has "extensive" knowledge of governmental processes and strategy and most recently led a team dealing with external customers and developing internal cultural practices and policies.

Director of Māori Partnerships Morehu Te Tomo says both Beverley and Hilary will work closely with teams across Council to strengthen relationships with Ahuriri mana whenua and tāngata whenua.

“I am really excited about this and see the formation of the new Te Waka Rangapū Directorate as a positive step forward for us in how we relate to both Māori and our broader community,” says Morehu.

Napier City Councillor Sally Crown said they are "whole-heartedly" committed to working and seeing positive outcomes for the whole community. 

"It is the next step for council in regards to building cultural capacity and understanding as an organisation, but it also solidifies the deep respect and recognition to mana whenua."