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Te Matatini Welcomes New Executive Director

No stranger to Kapa Haka after many years on the national stage, new Executive Director Carl Ross is excited to be joining the Te Matatini team in a role which marries his extensive experience in strategic management and his love for the performing arts.

Carl is passionate about Kapa Haka, te reo and tikanga Māori which are the warp and weft of the rich cultural tapestry of what it means to be Māori. He is committed to working with the National Board and key stakeholders to help guide and strengthen responsiveness to cultural diversity and the preservation and promotion of its proud legacy, nurtured through time and place, whakapapa and iwi.

Of Ngāpuhi (Te Uri Taniwha, Ngāti Rangi) and Scottish descent, Carl was raised in Moerewa by grandparents Te Kōti and Puti Katene (nee Baker). He later returned to Te Atatū North where he attended Rutherford College. He is married to Donna (Te Rārawa, Ngāti Whātua) and they have been blessed with two sons, two daughters and six mokopuna.

His passion for Kapa Haka, one he shares with his wife Donna, began with Te Rōpu Manutaki in 1969. In 1988 Carl joined Te Waka Huia and has been an active member ever Carl believes that Kapa Haka is a key contributor towards the promotion of good health, social wellbeing and all positive attributes associated with being Māori. He is enthusiastic about his new role which he believes will provide him with the opportunity to repay the taonga he has received. “I have been privileged to perform with Te Waka Huia locally, nationally and internationally. The opportunities to share with and learn from other indigenous cultures have been memorable and rewarding. Meeting my own Scottish whanau whilst performing at the Royal Military Tattoo in Scotland was a proud moment that I will honour and cherish forever.”

Carl has extensive senior management experience including positions in Wellington as General Manager NZQA, National Manager for the Ministry of Fisheries and more recently as a senior manager responsible for Māori Development at Kelston Deaf Education Centre in West Auckland. Key among his attainments at Kelston was leading the development and implementation of Te Rautaki Mātauranga Māori, a national strategy for increasing Māori Deaf academic achievement; as well as the build and installation of a new marae.

Rūaumoko wharenui is the only purpose built facility in New Zealand catering for Deaf Māori, enabling opportunities for them to explore and celebrate their identity and traditions in a culturally appropriate environment.

Carl takes up this position of Executive Director in the national Te Matatini office in Wellington on Monday, May 30th 2016. Selwyn Parata, Chair for Te Matatini says the organisation looks forward to Carl’s visionary leadership and guidance as they prepare for the Te Matatini Festival 2017 in Heretaunga and as they plan strategically for the next ten years of Kapa Haka growth and development.

"Mā tini mā mano ka rangatira a Kapa Haka"

Updated on 4th May 2016