Edwin is the Vice President for the Methodist Church of New Zealand Te Hāhi Weteriana o Aotearoa. He is also the secretary for the Vahefonua Tonga o Aotearoa which composes 35 parishes and congregations throughout the country. Edwin is the managing director for the Divine Foundation Ltd which provides education services to the Tongan community.
Rev. Tevita Finau
Rev. Kalolo Fihaki
Rev Kalolo Fihaki is the current superintendent for Vahefonua Tonga o Aotearoa the Tongan Synod of the Methodist Church of NZ. Kalolo has 30 years of public servant experience as a Senior Advisor for the Ministry of Pacific Peoples, the Deputy Director of Planning and the Chief Agriculture Officer for the Tongan government.
BAg, MAppSc, Dip PSM
Tau’ataina Tupou is a PSO Advisor for the Waitemata District Health Board. He was also and ITC Senior Portfolio Analyst and IS Business Relationship Advisor for the Auckland Council more then 9 years.
Tau’ataina’s background is in portfolio governance, IS reporting, quality assurance, pipeline / demand management and capital planning.
BIS (Information Systems)
Meleane is the Treasurer for the Vahefonua Tonga O Aotearoa Synod of the Methodist Church of NZ. She has held this role for more than 5 years. She is also a Senior Premium Insurance Manager for ASB Bank. Meleane has worked for the ASB Bank for more then 20 years and brings a wealth of financial knowledge to the Board of Trustees.
Dr. Edmond Fehoko
Dr Edmond Fehoko has worked in the tertiary field for over 10 years and is currently a Te Tomokanga Postdoctoral Fellow based at the University of Auckland. Edmond has a Bachelor of Arts (Criminology & Social Sciences), Master of Arts (Social Sciences), and a Ph.D. in Public Health from AUT University. Dr Fehoko is also the Pacific Research Lead for a Marsden Funded Research project exploring Barriers accessing Assisted Reproduction Technologies from a New Zealand perspective.
Phd, MA (Hons), BA SS
Dr. Manatu Ofa Fia
Dr Fia is a Clinical Psychologist. In 2013 manatu was a recipient of the Prime Minister’s Pacific Youth Awards. She begun her studies researchin anatomy and social biology. She switched her studues to Psychology when she realised how Pacific people were under-represented in the field of mental health. Manatu is committed to supporting Pacific with mental health issues in the Community. She graduated from the University of Otago with a Bachelor of Science with Honours and completed her Doctor of Clinical Psychology from the University of Auckland researching mental illness in the Pacific community. Dr Fia is registered with the New Zealand Psychologists Board, and practices as a clinical psychologist for Te Ara Poutama, Department of Correction in Palmerston North.
Dr. Melenaite Taumoefolau
Dr Melenaite Taumoefolau holds an MProfStudies (First Class Hons) and PhD from The University of Auckland, an MA from The University of Wales (University College of North Wales, Bangor), and a BA and CGCEd from The University of the South Pacific, Suva. Melenaite was previously the Principal of Tonga College and Senior Education Officer (Curriculum) to the Tongan Ministry of Education. She was the first Pasifika Woman to graduate with a PhD at The University of Auckland.
Dr Melenaite Taumoefolau is a researcher of linguistics, language revitalization and maintenance, Pasifika academic achievement, linguistics, language and culture.
Sela Finau is a Policy Director for the Department of Internal Affairs. She was previously the Director, Policy at Pacific Peoples, Chief Policy Advisor, National Policy Manager and Private Secretary to three Ministers for Pacific Peoples. Sela has a Bachelor of Arts and Law from Canterbury University.
Rev. Hiueni Nuku
Rev Hiueni Nuku is a Methodist minister for the Tongan ministry at Tawa Union Church in Wellington he also manages the Porirua Union Health Centre in Cannons Creek.
Rev Hiueni has strong connections to the Pacific community across New Zealand through his involvement in a number of different community roles. Rev Hiueni Chairs the Wellington Tongan Leaders Council and is a Trustee for the Pacific Business Trust.
Rev Hiueni has a Bachelors in Accounting and Finance.
Suliana Mone is in her final stages of a PhD in Law focusing on the intersection of law, culture, custom, politics and women’s rights in Tonga. She is currently a law lecturer at Waikato University. Suliana is passionate about research into the impacts of the law (both domestic and international) on the lives of Pacific people, particularly Pacific women. Suliana is interested in the emerging role of women, women’s issues and women’s rights in the development of political systems within Tonga and the South Pacific region.
Sami Paeahelotu Fifita
Sami Paea Fifita is the Chairperson for the Christchurch Tongan Youth Council. He has been involved with the youth group at Falelotu Kosipeli (Tongan Christchurch Methodist Parish) for 15 years. Within the past four years, Sami has played a major role in planning Christchurch-based youth programmes especially in the area of maintaining the Tongan Language.
For Sami, youth identity established through language and culture is important to maintain intergenerational wealth and knowledge.