Kahukuraariki Trust Board (the Trust Board) has today announced the appointment of Geraldine Baker as its General Manager.
Geraldine, who is of Ngāpuhi, Ngāti Toa Rangatira and Moriori descent was until recently the General Manager of Te Aupouri Commercial Development Limited and Te Aupouri Fisheries Management Limited.
“I am thrilled to have someone of Geraldine’s caliber and skills lead our Iwi in to a new and exciting period,” Chairman of the Trust Board, Teresa Tepania-Ashton says.
“Geraldine is the very first General Manager of our Trust Board. We are now entering a period in our journey where we need on the ground leadership to ensure our people are given the best opportunity, particularly in a post-COVID environment.
“Geraldine brings a wealth of knowledge and existing relationships established over the years, as well as breadth of experience in Iwi and commercial development.
“We are so excited, and we look forward to working with her as we continue to achieve positive outcomes for Ngātikahu ki Whangaroa,” says Mrs Tepania-Aston.
Mrs Baker has extensive experience in accounting, banking and is also the Chairman of Matauri X Incorporation, which is a Māori incorporation with 500+ shareholders owning approx. 478 hectares of prime coastal land.
Mrs Baker said this role is a perfect opportunity for her to contribute back to the advancement of her people and re-connect with her whānau.
“I’m excited about the new position and what this means for our Iwi. I have recently had the opportunity of talking with some of our whānau who appear to be unclear about the whole treaty settlement allocation and what impact (if any), that will have on them.
“This role means to give tangible effect to Iwi aspirations within the confines of the settlement pūtea and the asset base,” said Mrs Baker.
Geraldine’s appointment as General Manager is a first for the Trust Board, and there will be a process of establishing new systems and process.
“Because this is a new role, my first priorities will be to get out and about with our people and listen to what they want to see happen for the benefit of current and future generations.
“I feel genuinely humbled to be given the opportunity to at last start this journey with the Iwi as I know how long they have waited for this to happen. I know I will be the first of many to follow and so setting the foundations for others to add to, is an honour.”
Geraldine was welcomed with a small whakatau at Kerikeri last week, Friday 18 September.
Because of COVID restrictions, visitor numbers were limited, but the Trust Board is looking at introducing Geraldine to Iwi with a two-way Zoom interaction in the next few weeks.