Our People

Meet some of our national team

We also have regional managers, site managers, site administration staff and many amazing tutors working across 30+ sites around Aotearoa

Te Koruru
- National Governing Body of Literacy Aotearoa

Te Koruru (the National Governing Body) is responsible for establishing policy and monitoring the effectiveness of the organisation. Te Tumuaki (CEO) is an ex officio member of Te Koruru, and is responsible for the management of the national organisation.

Norm McKenzie

Te Kaiwhakahaere Māori (Joint Chairperson)
Ngāti Kahu ki Whangaroa

Norm is a trustee of the Kahukuraariki Trust Board (representing descendants of his iwi, Ngāti Kahu ki Whangaroa). He is also a board member of De Paul House; ADC Properties; Automatic Data Capture Systems Limited; Ngati Kahu Social and Health Services Trust; the Community Impact Forum and Te Runanga o Whaingaroa; Norm has led small, medium and large sales and marketing organisations in New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Norm is also co-chair of Te Tai Tokerau Māori Party electorate.

Howard Fancy

Te Kaiwhakahaere Tauiwi (Joint Chairperson)

Howard brings extensive governance, management and public sector experiences to the Board. He has successfully led major policy reforms and organisational changes. He has worked in both small and large organisations and with a diverse range of community and population groups. His public sector experiences include ten years as Chief Executive of the Ministry of Education, eight years as a Deputy Secretary for the Treasury and roles as Chief Executive of the then Ministry of Commerce and Acting Chief Executive of the Ministry for the Environment. He currently chairs the Board of Arts Access Aotearoa and is an external member of several public sector Risk and Audit and Advisory committees. He recently completed a seven year term as a Director of Cognition Education Limited and has also been the Executive Director of the independent Motu Economic and Public Policy research institute. Since leaving the public sector Howard has also undertaken a number of consultancy services for a wide range of organisations. He holds a MComm (Hons) in economics and BSc (Hons) in Chemistry from the University of Canterbury.

Jenny Solomon

Te Koruru Member

Jenny has a 20-year career as a leader and training provider in workplace education. She is Deputy Chair of The Southern Initiative (TSI), Auckland Council and a founding member of TSI’s Māori and Pasifika Trades Training, an organisation helping Māori and Pasifika who live in Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland acquire learn a trade and secure higher paying employment. She holds a Bachelor of Management Studies (Hons) from the University of Waikato and is completing an Executive MBA at Massey University.

Tania Anderson

Te Koruru Member

Nō Tauranga ahau, ā i whānau mai au i Durban, South Africa. Nō England, Norway, Rhodesia me Scotland ōku tupuna, ko Lamont tōku hapū. Tania lives with her whānau in Te Whanganui-a-tara and spends as much time as she can in the ngahere with her tāne Joe and their kurī Monty. She is a systems and participatory designer, and recovering project and change manager bringing together diverse skills and approaches to all things social innovation. She works in cross-government and community collaborative design in system, policy, and strategy. Engaging culturally grounded, trauma and adversity informed participatory practices for change in the disability support system, homelessness, mental health distress and addictions, family and sexual violence. She is also lived experience leader within the mental health and addictions sector, engaging her and her whānau’s experiences to support change for social justice and wellbeing outcomes. She believes that compassion, evidence and participatory practice is key to co-creating change and making a real difference with people. Driving to address equity, wellbeing and achieving system change with those who have historically been excluded.

Emily Vaka'uta

Te Koruru Member

Emily is the Chief Financial Officer at Springload Ltd, a chartered accountant and holds degrees in both a Bachelor of Commerce and Administration and Bachelor of Tourism. Emily has over 20 years experience in financial services with over 10 years spent in hedge funds leading teams across both medium and large (local and global) organisations. She is passionate about creating pathways for our Māori and Pasifika young people in order for them to achieve success.

Don Mann

Te Koruru Member
Ngāti Ruapani ki Waikaremoana, Ngāti Kahungunu ki Wairoa and Neiafu, Vava’u, Tonga

Don Mann was born and raised in West Auckland, one of five sons to Don Mann snr and Elaine Mann (nee Hema). Don’s whakapapa is Ngāti Ruapani ki Waikaremoana and Ngāti Kahungungu ki Wairoa through his mother Elaine. Don is Tongan through his father Don Mann snr who emigrated to NZ from Neiafu, Vava’u in 1947. Don is married to Louise, an experienced executive with the NZ Police. Don and Louise live in South Auckland with their daughters Sarah and Olivia. Don is the Chief Executive Officer of the Pacific Media Network, a public media broadcaster whose mission is to empower, encourage and nurture Pacific cultural identity and economic prosperity in Aotearoa. Don’s leadership roles across the public and private sector include; CEO of the Pacific Cooperation Foundation, Head of Commercial Partnerships at Auckland Tourism Events and Economic Development (ATEED), General Manager of the NZ Warriors NRL franchise. Don joined the NZ Police at the age of 20, serving 13 years that included eight years as a Detective with the Auckland Criminal Investigation Branch. Don is a graduate of Massey University, a Certified Company Director and a member of the Institute of Directors. Don also serves on the Board of Trustees for the Sky City Auckland Community Trust, The Rising Foundation and is an executive committee member of the NZ Tonga Business Council.

Executive team

Dr Claire McGowan

Tumuaki /CEO


Chief Operating Officer

David Gin

Chief Financial Officer

Chris Richardson

National Cluster Manager

Support Office staff

Delivery Team

Lucy Wratten
National Business Services Coordinator
Bruce George
National Curriculum Manager
Brenda Munro
Compliance and Information Liaison
Brent Barclay-Jones
National Business Development Coordinator
Ada Zaragoza Pena
Training Coordinator
Helen Oakes
National Training Facilitator
Garland Tonihi
National Training Facilitator

Finance and Business Support Systems Team

Julie Davis
Finance Manager
Iris Niu
Office Administrator and Receptionist
Takavee Thanluengtong
Junior Accounts Assistant
Jayran Mansouri
National Administrator

Strategic EngagementTeam

Manogi Tavelia
Priorities Engagement Facilitator
Mick Wheeler
National Business Development Coordinator
Stephanie Spraggon
National Outcomes and Quality Coordinator
Lynn Cumming
National ITO Coordinator and National Outcomes and Quality Coordinator
Roohi Faizal
Policy Analyst