Who is Mary-Anne?

Throughout my life, there have been places of significance that have shaped who I am and the Mahi I dedicate myself to today.

Turakina is where I spent the first two years of my life. A settlement situated southeast of Whanganui city on the North Island of New Zealand, it’s name relates to the overland journey of the ancestor Haunui-a-Nanaia. Turakina River is the river he “felled a tree to cross”. Turaki – means to fell or to throw down.

The metaphor of creating a bridge is one I live in my own Mahi. I support people to create their own crossings towards new knowledge, skills or ways of being. Sometimes this means helping them find the right ‘crossing’, whilst other times it means helping them to create it, or holding their hand and supporting them as they cross it. It can even include waiting for them on the other side, offering words of support.

Another place of significance for me is Kōpaki. In the heart of the King Country, in the central North Island of New Zealand, it is a place I spent my formative and teenage years. A mere blip on the map, it does, however, hold a significant community wairua.

Kōpaki means to envelop or to wrap around, and this is what I experienced growing up within the community.

The concept of Kōpaki is a significant part of my Mahi today. There are times when people need to be enveloped in Aroha or even tough love. My role is to notice what is needed and support them until they are strong in their knowledge, skills or being to be able to stand and lead with confidence. I do not smother or allow people to hide from the journey they are taking, but instead, envelop them in support to help them reach their destination.

Whāingaroa, (Raglan) is also a place of significance for me. Meaning ‘the long pursuit’, it refers to the lengthy search of the Tainui waka (canoe) for a final destination. In my Mahi, I support people to journey towards understanding themselves and others, and to learn new techniques or strategies that make them better leaders. I believe in the unlimited potential of every human, and support the pursuit of continual growth and development to uncover our unique gifts. Learning is a journey that I myself embrace, and support those I work alongside to do so for themselves.

My Mahi today.

I am passionate about growing greatness in others. I do this through my work with leaders, teams, and youth.

I truely believe that in order to become leaders, we need to develop from the inside-out. That is, we need to do the mahi within. This requires us to explore our own turangawaewae, whakapapa, values and beliefs to better understand who we are and how we wish to lead. When we are grounded in these, we are able to lead from a place of inner strength and purpose. It is during the challenges of leadership that we are then able to draw-upon this deep knowing. Furthermore, when we lead from this place, all decisions and conversations are grounded from our core values and the whakapapa of our learnings. This is the birthplace of integrity and courage required of any leader.

I bring over 25 years’ experience working with schools and youth from my times as a primary school principal, secondary school HOD, secondary school professional learning leader, national and international-level facilitator, speaker and qualified coach.

I am also RocheMartin’s Emotional Intelligence for Leadership lead coach, trainer and assessor for New Zealand. This work underpins my approach.

My qualifications include: Masters Ed. Leadership, Graduate Diploma of IT in Education, Graduate Diploma the Arts, Bachelor of Education, Diploma of Teaching.

Nō reira, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa.

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