Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust Board is tasked with the role of Kaitiaki of Te Kōhanga Reo Movement

Patron: Kiingi Tuheitia Potatau Te Wherowhero VII

Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust Board Members

(from left to right rear) Hurimoana Nui Dennis, Te Wheoro Rangikotua, Te Waihoroi Shortland, Sue Tipene, Daniel Procter (Co-Chair), 

Front: Dame Iritana Tawhiwhirangi (Kings Representative) Matua Hook, Dame Tariana Turia (Co-Chair).

Te Kōhanga Reo Board Members

Ue Pohatu, Ngāti Rangiwaho, Ngāi Tāmanuhiri, Tairawhiti Whānui

Daniel is the first graduate of Kōhanga Reo to become a Board member.  He was nominated by his Kōhanga Reo whānau and appointed in 2016.

A fluent speaker of te reo Māori and graduate of the prestigious Te Panekiretanga o te Reo, Daniel also brings his experience and knowledge from the education and social sector to the role.

As a Pāpā in Kōhanga Reo he also represents the He Manu Pīrere alumni and the future faces of the kaupapa.

Ngā Wairiki, Ngāti Apa,Ngā Rauru, Whanganui, Ngāti Tuwharetoa

It was over 30 years ago when Dame Tariana and her late husband George helped to establish Tiehutia Te Kōhanga Reo ki Whangaehu Marae one of a few Marae based Kōhanga reo. Having followed her moko and now great grandchildren through, she lets her actions speak for her.

After 18 years in Parliament and forming the Māori Party, Dame Tariana Turia brings a wealth of political nous to the kaupapa. 

Dame Tariana is still very active in her roles on Hauora, Government, and Iwi Boards. She sits alongside Daniel Proctor as a co-chair of the Kōhanga Reo National Trust Board.

Te Aupouri, Ngāti Hine, Ngati Rangi o Taiamai, Ngāti Rahri, Ngāti Wai, Te Rarawa, Ngāti Kuri

A reo advocate of over 40 years, Te Waihoroi has been an active promoter, teacher and pioneer of Te Reo me ngā Tikanga. Creating an environment for the language to flourish has been his passion and his life's mission.

His constant companion in life is his wife Rahera, and they have been part of Te Ataarangi for over 30 years. There is no sector of language revitalisation that Te Waihoroi has not participated in, he also sits on Te Taura Whiri Board, Tumehere o Te Rūnanga o Ngātine, Māori Television Services, and is chairman of Te Mātāwai. 

Te Waihoroi has been appointed as the Kaumātua of the Board, a position of service he humbly accepted from Koro Mānuera as a custodian of reo. 

He herenga o Waihoroi puta noa i te Taitokerau. 

Neke atu i te 40 tau a Waihoroi e tohe ana kia ora te reo o te iwi Māori, kia hua ōna ahuatanga katoa ki ngā kaupapa whai kiko ki te reo, me te ahurea Māori.  Taketake ake ko te reo me ngā tikanga te tāhūhū, te manawa, te tuapapa o ngā mahi katoa o tōna ao. He tangata pūmau, whakaū tikanga reo, kaupapa Māori ahakoa te aha. 

Ko tona poutokomanawa ko tana hoa rangatira ko Rāhera. Kua neke atu i te 30 tau raua e whirinaki ana ki te kaupapa o Te Ataarangi.

Tata kore he wāhi e toe ana i roto i ngā mahi whakarauora i te reo Māori kahore a Waihoroi i whai wāhi atu. 

Taunga ana ia ki ngā mahi poari kaitiaki, arā, kua noho i te:  Te Taura Whiri; Tumuhere o Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Hine; Māori Television Services;  Ngāti Hine Forestry Trust. I tēnei wā ko Waihoroi te Heamana o Te Mātāwai, ko ia hoki kei te kawe i te tūranga Kaumātua mō Te Poari Matua o Te Kōhanga Reo i mahue mai i te kaumātua i a Manuera Tohu.  E hari, e koa ana a Waihoroi i tohua a ia hei kairīwhi mo Mānuera i roto i te wairua mahaki me te ngākaunui ki te reo Māori, mei ra ia te ora mo ake tonu atu.

Ngāti Rongowhakaata, Ngāti Porou, Ngati Kahunungu

Hurimoana believes that Kōhanga Reo is the perfect platform for getting a good start in life, in fact, he believes that if you get it right at Kohanga Reo you get it right everywhere else in life, it all begins at Kohanga Reo. An outspoken advocate for Homelessness and the general state of poverty amongst Māori and those socially disadvantaged. His efforts as the chair of Te Puea Memorial Marae in South Auckland were recognised and he was made the Kiwi Bank Hero of the Year which was an honour and privilege that he accepted on behalf of the whanau of Te Puea Memorial Marae.

Hurimoana worked as a member of the NZ Police force for 30 years to reduce Maori participation in crime and providing support to victims and communities in need. Hurimoana brings an urban flavour to the Board, that seeks to bind those dislocated from their marae and whānau while respecting and embracing the ahi kaa roa of Tamaki Makaurau.

Ngāti Whakaue, Ngai Te Rangi, Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāti Pūkenga, Tūhoe 

Te Wheoro started in Kōhanga reo with her own children in 1984, as a mother and a Kaiāwhina. Her flax roots experience provides an invaluable insight into whānau management and the realities of working in a Kōhanga reo environment. 

A holder of Te Tohu Mātauranga Whakapakari Tino Rangatiratanga, and a Kaiwhakamātau for her Purapura, Te Wheoro has tracked her tamariki through to Kura Kaupapa and sat as chair to its Board, while also having roles on Land and whānau Trusts.

A passionate advocate of Kōhanga reo “ Kōhanga reo connects us as a motu through our mokopuna, who then move on to become, lawyers, movie stars, artists and doctors. A seed from Rangiatea that will never be lost.”

Ngāti Kahungunu, McGhee

Matua hails from the Hook whānau of Ngāti Kahungunu ki te Wairoa, and the McGhee family from Te Waipounamu. His parents were raised within Māori and Pakeha worldviews, both hard-workers who taught Matua from a young age how to care for the land, the sea, the people and all things that nurture and nourish.  

His tamariki and mokopuna have all attended Kōhanga Reo, Kura Kaupapa Māori, Whare Kura and Whare Wānanga which is testament to his ongoing commitment and support to kaupapa Māori.

Since the early 90's Matua has helped 60 Kōhanga Reo to develop strong financial, legal and operational management practices using Te Korowai and Te Ara Tūāpae as the basis. Matua is committed to working toward the continued development of Te Kōhanga Reo, and is humbled by the opportunity to enhance mokopuna wellbeing and development.

Ngāi Tahu

Sue Tīpene is a former Kaupapa Kaimahi of Te Waipounamu Distrcit Office, and worked for the Kōhanga Reo National Trust for 12 years supporting Kōhanga reo in Te Waipounamu. She was pivotal in the establishment of Te Kōhanga reo o Rangiora in 1985. A graduate of Te Tohu Mātauranga Whakapakari Tino Rangatiratanga and is a kaiwhakmātau.  

Well versed in all aspects of Kōhanga reo, her knowledge and advocacy for the whānau of Te Waipounamu and Wharekauri brings another point of view to the board table.

Ngāti Porou, Ngāti Kahungunu, Ngā Puhi

Dame Iritana Tawhiwhirangi has been with Kōhanga Reo since its genesis and establishment. One of the “cornerstones of the Kōhanga Reo movement”. She was appointed as an inaugural trustee and the General Manager of Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust Board in 1982. 

Previously she was a teacher and the first Māori woman to be appointed to the Department of Māori Affairs, She remembers when over 120 Kaumatua from around the motu met in Wellington during the early 1980’s. From those conversations Kōhanga reo was born.

Back then she remembers Kōhanga reo wasn’t and still isn't an early childhood service, but rather a movement for maoridom. 

A passionate believer of the philosphy that “language is caught not taught” and that Kōhanga reo is about whānau and whānau development. A trooper of the kaupapa of Kōhanga Reo she resigned as a Trust member in 2017, only to be requested by Kingi Tuheitia to sit on the Board as a representative of the Kiingitana.

Affectionately known as Nanny Iri, she is an avid golfer and likes to read when she has a moment to spare.

History of the Board and its role

Te Kōhanga Reo National Trust was set up and incorporated on  4 January 1984 under the Charitable Trust Act 1957. On the 14 September 1992 the name was changed by resolution to Te Kōhanga National Trust Board where the rules were amended to give better clarity and understanding for their responsibilities as Kaitiaki.

The board consisted of a Patron and Board Members

The Trust Board is responsible for the following principles

  • Tikanga Māori
  • Operating under the principles of good stewardship
  • Maintaining the highest standards of professionalism and integrity (Trust Deed  26/08/2019)

And will continue to have the following focus:

  • To promote, support and encourage the use and retention of Te Reo
  • To Promote, support and encourage: The Kaupapa of Te Kōhanga Reo and in particular the goal of total immersion in Te Reo Māori.
  • The establishment and maintenance within New Zealand of Te Kōhanga Reo
  • Financial  and administrative advisory support
  • To Liase with the Crown and Government departments and other relevant bodies for the purposes of promoting the Kaupapa of Te Kōhanga Reo. 

Membership onto the board is open to all persons whom meet the criteria for nomination within their respective rohe and is for a term of 5 years.

The board consists of no more than 10 members and no less than 6.

Te Whare Punanga Kōrero

This role is held by Te Arikinui Kīngi Tuheitia(the Māori King) and his successors as the continued legacy of the involvement of Te Kingitanga in their role of supporting and promoting  the kaupapa of Te Kōhanga Reo to whānau throughout the motu.

A representative of the king (Dame Iritana Twhiwhirangi)  will attend Board meetings and other meetings specific to the activities of the Trust. This role does not hold voting rights. 

We are forever grateful to those original trustees who had the vision and foresight to guide the waka of Te Kōhanga Reo for future generations:

Te Kōhanga Reo Trustees since 1983

1983 15th December Te Kōhanga Reo Trust- Board Members

  • Tamati Reedy Secretary of Dept Māori Affairs
  • Iritana Tawhiwhirangi CEO of Maori Affairs Dept
  • Ruka Broughton Senior Lecturer Māori Studies Victoria University
  • John Bennett Chair Māori Education Foundation
  • Wiremu Kaa Director of Māori and Island Education

10 representatives from regions

List of Previous Board Members and Patrons

  • Te Arikinui Te Atairangikaahu 
  • Sir James Henare