The operations of Rotomā have been largely dedicated to the forestry industry initially by way of leasing the native forest cutting rights. By 1995 much of the forestland was replanted with pinus radiata by Tenon. After lengthy negotiations, Rotomā was able to confirm the purchase of the forest from Tenon in 2005 and now anticipate a successful and highly profitable harvest over the next few years.
Farming was also pursued at different times on the Rotomā block, generally without much success. The returns from farming did not compare well to other regions and after suffering significant stock and financial losses from drought, farming operations were discontinued in the 1980s.
From the late 1950s the Committee of Management (CoM) took advantage of an opportunity to subdivide and lease lakefront residential sections along the Rotomā lake edge. Several development phases to create more sections took place over the next few decades and there are currently 147 leases that continue to generate a reliable and steady income stream for Rotomā today. Rotomā also has commercial rental investments in Rotorua township that provide good returns.
Rotomā is also fortunate to have geothermal fields beneath its lands and, since the early 1990s, have been investing heavily in the development of a geothermal power station to utilise this unique resource. Rotomā is poised to undertake a significant geothermal joint venture with other neighbouring land blocks and once it comes to fruition the investment will provide a prosperous future for Rotomā and its shareholders.
Rotomā recently celebrated its 100 year anniversary and the CoM is focussed on ensuring that the Incorporation has clear strategic direction to foster continued growth and prosperity for the shareholders for another 100 years.
To protect, manage and enhance the Rotomā No. 1 Incorporation land and assets to the best advantage of the shareholders and their descendants.
He whāinga – A protected, enhanced and growing whenua that is sustainably utilised.
He Whainga – Our people are connected, our hapū is culturally strong, and our marae is thriving.
He Whainga – Healthy, vibrant and successful whānau.
He Whainga – Create wealth from our assets to achieve our vision.
Nelson was elected to the Committee of Management (CoM) in 2008 and has been Chair since 2010. Nelson’s previous roles at the Rotorua Māori Land Court during the mid-2000’s, taught him the skills required to succeed in governance and leadership roles like this.
He believes that a key reason for the incorporation’s recent successes has been the ability for the CoM to get on and make decisions without having to worry about ego. “Yes, it is about our shareholders, but more importantly we need to be mindful that the decisions we make today will impact our tamariki and mokopuna.”
Nelson is also Chair of Tuara Matata, a collective of organisations including Rotomā No.1 Inc., Tautara Matawhaura Trust and Rotoiti 15 Trust. Tuara Matata is currently involved in geothermal development opportunities on their whenua and they are also exploring opportunities to work closer together across other primary sectors, like forestry.
Nelson currently works full-time at Scion (New Zealand Forest Research Institute Limited) as a Business Development Associate in the Marketing and Partnerships Team. This role has grown Nelson’s personal and professional development, providing valuable insight into New Zealand’s growing forestry industry.
Nelson is married to Paula and they have five children between them. They currently live at Rotoiti with two of their children, Manawarangi and Raina.
Glenda has been a CoM member since 2010 and holds a Bachelor of Management Studies (Hons) with a background in small business, commercial banking and education. She is currently employed by Rotorua Lakes High.
Glenda is enthusiastic about the opportunities that the Incorporation is about to embark on and looks forward to utilising her skills of business, strategy and finance.
Ngaroma was elected as a CoM member in 2010. Earlier this year Ngaroma was made a Partner for Kāhui Legal, she has legal experience covering criminal prosecution, environmental litigation, resource management, public law, Māori issues and local government. Her governance roles have included being a trustee for Taikura Trust (a service organisation for people with disabilities), former chairperson of Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Pikiao and director of Te Arawa Fisheries Limited. Ngaroma is also currently a ministerial appointment to the Waiariki Institute of Technology Council.
Maureen joined the CoM for Rotomā No.1 Incorporation in 2020.
Eva joined the CoM for Rotomā No.1 in 2015 and brings with her years of governance experience having served as a trustee for Te Pumautanga o Te Arawa and as a trustee of the Tarawhai Iwi Trust. Eva has vast experience in the social and health sector and has been a great advocate for our koeke and tamariki. Eva has been integral in supporting the Kaumatua support project initiated by Bruno Gardiner on behalf of the CoM.
Lewis was elected a CoM member in 2018. Lewis Gardiner is regarded as one of the most innovative and respected Māori jade artists of his generation. He has had multiple exhibitions throughout major cities internationally. In 1994, he graduated in Māori Craft and Design at the Waiariki Institute of Technology in Rotorua. During his final year he was introduced to the valuable medium of pounamu (jade) and was immediately attracted to its artistic possibilities. Māori had always valued pounamu for both its hardness and for its translucent beauty. Lewis was no different – as he says, “Our tupuna (ancestors) have given us, the Māori people, the resource and knowledge base to provide a reference for us and our children for years to come.”
Lewis’s business acumen and relationships in the arts will be a real asset to the Rotomā No.1 CoM as we seek to look at new investment opportunities and building on the tireless work of his father Bruno Gardiner and the many other Committee members who have passed.
Muriwai was elected a CoM member in 2018. He has 14 years of senior leadership experience having served as Te Tumu Whakahaere Māori of Creative New Zealand – The NZ Arts Council 2002 – 2016. He brings Te Arawa governance experience including the Past Chair of Te Kura o Rotoiti, past member of Te Rūnanga o Ngāti Pikiao, and he is currently Chair of Te Awhe Marae – Maketu, Chair of Ngāti Pikiao Ahurei, Chair Pūkenga Kōeke o Pikiao and is a trustee of Te Waiiti Marae.
Muriwai is active on marae throughout Ngāti Pikiao, Ngāti Makino and also including his other tribal marae. He also works with Ngā Kōeke a Pikiao as they engage, foster and maintain whakapapa relationships with other iwi including attending tangihanga, poukai, koroneihana and other major tribal kaupapa.
He is currently employed as the Kia Mākino Cultural Facilitator by Ngāti Makino Iwi Authority.
At the end of 2017, a recruitment process for our first CEO was completed. In February 2018, Neville started his role as the CEO for Rotomā No.1 Incorporation.
Neville will play a vital role in continuing to progress our growing asset base and to lead our strategic commitments and priorities. He will work across the business to build and implement our vision and mission ‘Kia mau ki te whenua hei oranga mō te iwi’.
Neville brings extensive networks, valuable leadership, experience and expertise across many aspects of te ao Māori. Prior to taking this role Neville held a number of leadership roles for Te Wānanga o Aotearoa and more recently for Te Tumu Paeroa as a Trust Manager. He is a director on a number of boards, has an MBA, Diploma of Teaching and a Bachelor of Social Science.
More importantly, Neville’s appointment to this role marks a significant milestone for Rotomā, which is to have one of our own managing our assets and leading the strategy that will realise our aspirations.
At the end of 2018, we completed a recruitment process for our first Project Administrator. Laurie started her role as the Project Administrator for Rotomā No.1 Incorporation in January 2019.
Laurie will play a vital role in supporting CEO Neville King and the Rotomā No.1 Incorporation CoM Members to progress our growing asset base and to lead our strategic commitments and priorities. She will work across the business to build and implement our vision and mission – ‘Kia mau te whenua hei oranga mō te iwi’.
Laurie has worked in law firms for the past 10 years where she gained significant knowledge around processes within the administration sector.
More importantly, Laurie’s appointment marks a significant milestone for Rotomā as we are proud to have one of our own assisting to manage our assets alongside the CEO and the CoM members.
At the end of 2019, the incorporation completed a recruitment process for our rangatahi work ready programme He Pou Rangatahi. Abe started in this alongside Hoani Mihaka in November 2019. Hoani has now moved into his new role as a Kaitohutohu (Career Pathway Advisor) and now works alongside MeiMei Whata.
Abe will play an important role in helping to support and guide our rangatahi to attain qualifications in forestry but to support them in seeking other potential employment or educational pathways.
Abe has a Navy background and has worked in the Te Maioha o Parekarangi Youth Justice Residence. His experiences have helped the many rangatahi who have joined our Kaupapa.
MeiMei started her role as a Kaiarahi alongside Abe Whata for Rotomā No.1 Incorporation in February 2020.
MeiMei will play an important role in helping to support and guide our rangatahi to achieve higher learning, a range of skills and attain qualifications to carry on the incorporation legacy and to embody one of the incorporation whakatauki ‘for our own by our own’.
MeiMei has a Forestry background, she has been involved with pine trees on and off since 1987. She is a logmaker by trade and holds a Forestry Operations Diploma.
More importantly, MeiMei’s appointment marks a significant milestone for Rotomā and we are proud to have one of our own lead this important Kaupapa.
In 2019, we completed a recruitment process for our He Pou Rangatahi Programme. Hoani started his role as a Kaiarahi alongside Abe Whata for Rotomā No.1 Incorporation in November 2019. Hoani has currently moved from his previous role to the Kaitohutohu role.
Hoani will play an important role in helping to support our rangatahi in pastoral care to achieve higher learning, a range of skills and attain qualifications to carry on the incorporation legacy and to embody one of the incorporation whakatauki ‘for our own by our own’.
Hoani has worked in the tertiary education sector (teaching te reo Māori) the Youth guarantee sector (sport health and fitness, and tourism) with Te Wānanga o Aotearoa, Youth mentoring sector with Te Waiariki Purea Trust for the past 15 years.
At the end of 2019, we completed a recruitment process for our He Pou Rangatahi Programme. Karlena started her role as the Kaiāwhina for Rotomā No.1 Incorporation in July 2020.
Karlena will play a vital role in supporting Kaiarahi/Kaitohutohu Abe Whata, Meimei Whata and Hoani Mihaka to progress our He Pou Rangatahi Programme and to lead our strategic commitments and priorities.
Karlena has worked in hospitality and law firms for the past 10 years where she gained significant knowledge around processes within the hospitality and administration sector.