Aotearoa’s tikanga-led
Māori governance programme

About He Tukutuku Koiora

He Tukutuku Koiora is a tikanga-led, future-focused Māori governance programme that provides a pathway to accelerate talented Māori professionals into tomorrow’s governance leadership roles.

The two-and-a-half-year programme encompasses both online and in-person learning modules, manaaki support and mentoring, and a capstone 18-month associate directorship placement.

Through a supportive learning environment that’s embedded in tikanga Māori, the programme aims to grow the next generation of future Māori leaders and strengthen their leadership skillset so that they are resilient, capable, connected, critically minded, and forward-thinking in their approach.

With the increasing demand for values-based leadership, He Tukutuku Koiora ensures our next wave of Māori governance practitioners have the expertise, guidance, and support to be effective governors and leaders of tomorrow.

As amonuku (Associate Directors) complete the programme, they will join Te Pūtea Whakatupu’s growing alumni network and form the largest cohort of Māori professionals in leadership and governance roles within Aotearoa.

Please note, applications for our Amonuku (Associate Directors) and expressions of interest for host board organisations are now closed, join the pānui list to be notified of future intakes.


“We all come from different paths, but we all realise that being a part of this kaupapa is more about giving back to the communities that we are involved in. Having that service lens and giving is really important and I think we will all take that into our leadership styles going forward”

Emma Winiata, Amonuku (Associate Director)

“He Tuktutuku Koiora will ensure our next wave of Māori governance practitioners have the opportunity, guidance, and support to be effective leaders of tomorrow.”

Te Pūoho Kātene, Kaihautū, Te Pūtea Whakatupu Trust
“Often I find I’m ‘Te Māori’ and often the sole Māori perspective on governance boards, so I’d really love to see that change”
Ernestynne Walsh, Amonuku (Associate Director)
“They (amonuku) can call on us if we’re required in any way, to either support them in the development of their governance expertise or connect them with others that we know across the country that could be additional mentors, supervisors, or supporters – they all receive multiple ‘cheerleaders’ across the country”
Bentham Ohia, Pūkenga (Delivery Mentor)

“We are in really small groups, so we have gotten to know each other quite quickly and at quite a deep level that you wouldn’t necessarily get if it was a larger group. This means there is more space for us to participate and to feel part of the group”

Joanne Reidy, Amonuku (Associate Director)

“A lot of societal change happens through governance, and so for me, one of the key pieces that have driven me in this path is discovering my heritage in te ao Māori and my whakapapa”

Kale Panoho, Amonuku (Associate Director)

“This programme is part of a puna that everyone can go back to over and over again. It’s not just for us, but for ngā uri e haere mai nei”

Peata Williams, Amonuku (Associate Director)
“We know that what is good for Māori, is good for all of Aotearoa, so I would like to represent a Māori lens in supporting our larger entities across Aotearoa to really anchor the strengths of te ao Māori into the way that they operate their organisations.”
Teaho Pihama, Amonuku (Associate Director)

Meet our amonuku

We were overwhelmed by the enthusiasm for the programme, with over 100 candidates applying from across the motu. Our selection panel had a tough time selecting only eight available spaces – nō mātou te hōnore. However, after much deliberation, we are pleased to welcome our first wave of exceptional Māori talent into the programme.

Nau mai, haere mai ki a Hinurewa Poutu, Kale Panoho, Emma Winiata, Teaho Pihama, Joanne Reidy, Jesse Pirini, Peata Williams, and Ernestynne Walsh who form the inaugural cohort of Amonuku – our associate directors. We are delighted to welcome you into the programme and tautoko your journey into leadership.

Dr Hinurewa Poutu
Dr Hinurewa Poutu
Kale Panoho
Kale Panoho
Emma Winiata
Emma Winiata
Teahooterangi (Teaho) Pihama
Teahooterangi (Teaho) Pihama
Joanne Reidy
Joanne Reidy
Dr Jesse Pirini
Dr Jesse Pirini
Ernestynne Walsh
Ernestynne Walsh
Peata Williams
Peata Williams

Our host boards

We are proud to be partnered with the following organisations who share our vision for succession and have welcomed our Amonuku as Associate Directors on their boards, providing a safe and supportive environment so that they can grow and flourish.

Programme overview

He Tukutuku Koiora is a two-and-a-half-year programme that is split into the following four modules:

Programme timeline

He Tukutuku Koiora is a two-and-a-half-year programme that will launch in April 2023 and conclude in November 2025. The programme is delivered via a hybrid model of both online learning through our purpose-built e-learning platform, and in-person hui and wānanga.

We ask that all applicants ensure they are available to participate in all hui both in-person and online throughout the programme.

Module one: A Māori Approach to governance (YEAR ONE)

Module one content Delivery form Date of delivery
Values-based governance In-person wānanga (Auckland) and online learning April 2023
Cultural intelligence and capability Weekly hui topa and online learning modules May – June 2023
The role of Te Tiriti Fortnightly hui topa and online learning modules July – August 2023
The reality of governance Self-directed online learning September – October 2023

Module two: You as a leader and governor (YEAR ONE)

Module two content Delivery form Date of delivery
Identifying your unique qualities and strengths Self-directed online learning and one-on-one online sessions October – November 2023
Communication as influence Online learning and in-person wānanga November 2023
Politics and persuasion Self-directed online learning May – July 2024
Health and wellbeing 2-day noho, location TBC March 2024

Module three: The role of a board in governance (Ongoing throughout YEAR ONE and YEAR TWO)

Module three content Delivery form Date of delivery
Governance foundations One day in-person wānanga and online learning November 2023
Financial literacy One day in-person wānanga and online learning July 2024
Understanding and managing risk One day in-person wānanga and online learning TBC
Strategy and the board One day in-person wānanga and online learning TBC

Module four: Organisational whakapapa and hekenga (YEAR TWO and YEAR THREE)

Module four content Delivery form Date of delivery
Onboarding TBD April 2024
Business context and structures TBD April 2024
Whakapapa and Te Kumete Kōrero TBD April 2024
Whānaungatanga In-person attendance at Māori in Governance Summit 2024 and post-placement wānanga July 2024 (Summit) and November 2025 (wānanga)

Frequently asked pātai for Amonuku

As this is the launch of our first cohort, our expectation is that we would like to bring a new cohort of amonuku into the programme every one to two years. No recruitment date has been set for 2025 yet.

Although the programme is tikanga-focussed, knowledge of te reo is not expected.  

We acknowledge we are all on our own Te Reo journey and will support everyone at their varying levels of competency. 

This programme is suitable for Māori professionals who are wanting to pursue a career in governance. We have an entry requirement of 22 years of age and four years minimum work experience.  There is no upper age limit. 

An applicant should have a strong body of work behind them and is already in, or ready to move into governance or senior leadership roles. 

We have detailed information on each module as well as a timetable of expected delivery dates at the top of this page.

The programme is a mix of:  

  • Noho 
  • Wānanga (in person and online) 
  • Self-paced online learning 
  • Individual projects 

This is a new programme developed by the Trust: we estimate the following time commitments. Please note that these are indicators only: 

  • Self-paced online learning 2 hours per week (across all modules) 
  • Noho two days per quarter, including travel and overnight accommodation if required (across all modules) 
  • Webinars and online wānanga 1-2 hours per week when required. 
  • Board placements will be determined by the host board: as a guide allow for 16 hours per board meeting (readings, preparation and attendance) 

The Trust is looking to appoint and sponsor a maximum of eight amonuku for this inaugural recruitment round.

All amonuku are required to attend all the modules, noho and wānanga.

On your board placement you will be expected to attend all meetings, virtual or in person, to be determined by the host board.

The Trust is looking for our future governance leaders – that does not require an MBA or a legal degree – leadership is all throughout our community.

The characteristics we are searching for include:

  • Dedication to fully participating and completing the programme and to your future in governance
  • An understanding of the relationship between leadership roles and accountability to your people
  • Established skills and experience in your field of mahi, or in service to your people
  • The potential to be transformative in your thinking and actions around the board table.

We have four main learning modules across the programme. Confirmed pūkenga include

  • Puata Hou Ltd
  • Kathie Irwin and Associates
  • Akomaiway
  • Woo Wellbeing
  • Te Ao Marama

Further providers will be added in due course.

If chosen as an amokura for our inaugural programme, all costs will be covered by the Trust. This will include:

  • All training and module costs
  • All accommodation and travel costs

The Trust has an expectation that your employer will support your journey by the provision of paid study leave or professional development allowances for your attendance at noho, in-person wananga and board meetings.

Frequently asked pātai for Host Boards

As a board host of He Tukutuku Koiora, one of our Amonuku will be placed as an Associate Director on your board for the period of 18 months. During this time, the Amonuku will attend all of your board’s meetings (online, in-person, or both) and participate in kōrero pertaining to the governance of your organisation.

The responsibilities of the host boards are as follows:

  • Fully support the onboarding the Amonuku into your organisation.
  • Clearly define the Amonuku’s role and expectations as an Associate Director.
  • Provide necessary software to access key resources and documents, such as your organisation’s constitution.
  • Offer mentorship and opportunities for skill development.

No, we accept expressions of interest from all organisations across all sectors.

We welcome expressions of interest from all organisations within Aotearoa governed by a board. This includes both the public and private sectors, in addition to charities and non-profits.

Host boards will be responsible for all travel associated with meetings. He Tukutuku Koiora will be responsible for per diem payments to Amonuku.

With our Amonuku having almost completed their first year of He Tukutuku Koiora, grounded in tikanga and values-based leadership, we are now seeking host organisations who are willing to mentor our Amonuku as part of their capstone 18-month associate directorship board placement.

We invite expressions of interest from organisations who

  • Have a passion for governance and leadership development, particularly within the context of nurturing emerging talent
  • Willingness to provide mentorship opportunities and contribute to the professional development of our Amonuku (Associate Directors)
  • Incorporate or are on a journey to incorporating Māori values and the principles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi in governance practices
Each host board will have one Amonuku placement.

Amonuku will be onboarded into host organisations from April 2024 with their placement lasting 18 months and concluding in November 2025.

The time commitment for onboarding an Amonuku into your board will be the same as your current director onboarding process. There should be no extra time commitment outside of your scheduled governance activity.

We welcome all modes of board contact, however, your organisation is responsible for covering travel costs associated with Amonuku attending in-person meetings.

Details of our current cohort of Amonuku can be found further down this page.

At the beginning of 2021, we opened applications for potential Amonuku to apply for entry into the programme. From this, we received over 100 applications. This was then followed by a rigorous panel selection process, to which eight Amonuku were successfully inducted into the programme. The characteristics we searched for included:

  • Dedication to fully participating and completing the programme and passion for a future in governance
  • An understanding of the relationship between leadership roles and accountability to their people
  • Established skills and experience in their field of mahi, or in service to their people
  • The potential to be transformative in their thinking and actions around the board table.

Amonuku placements are not paid board positions.

We expect all Amonuku to be responsible for the following:

  • Leadership in their capacity as an Associate Director
  • Contributing to kōrero surrounding the strategic planning and execution of your organisation’s activity
  • Collaborating with existing members of your board
  • A commitment to learning and continual professional development.
Hosting an Amonuku (associate director) not only supports the development of Māori leadership within Aotearoa, but also brings fresh perspectives, new skills, and innovative ideas to your organisation. Other benefits include:

  • Access to the Amonuku’s skills and expertise
  • Fresh insights and perspectives on organisational challenges
  • Participation in an established mentoring and leadership programme with support from He Tukutuku Koiora

Our pūkenga

We have partnered with leading practitioners and providers within the governance sector to deliver content that is up-to-date, forward thinking, and embedded in mātauranga and tikanga Māori.