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Appointment of ERO Chief Executive

6 May 2014

Appointment of ERO Chief Executive

The State Services Commissioner, Iain Rennie, today announced the appointment of Iona Holsted to the position of Chief Executive and Chief Review Officer, Education Review Office (ERO).

“Ms Holsted is a highly experienced and competent public servant with a track record of delivery and successful leadership within departments and in complex sectors,” Mr Rennie said.

“She is powerfully motivated by the challenge of contributing to a well-integrated, coherent education system which delivers for children, their parents, and their communities.”

Ms Holsted is currently Deputy Chief Executive at the Ministry of Social Development (MSD), responsible for services to seniors and students (including StudyLink) as well as ensuring the integrity of the benefit system. Ms Holsted has held a number of senior management roles at the MSD, and has led high performing teams to achieve good results.

Before joining the Ministry, Ms Holsted was a Deputy Commissioner at the State Services Commission for six years. In this role, she was responsible for assessing the performance of a wide range of government departments.

She is a trained teacher, and prior to joining the Public Service in 1995 had a number of roles in the non-government sector. She was also later seconded back to SSC to assist with the transition and consolidation of the various Ministries into the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment.

ERO evaluates and reports on the education and care of students in schools and early childhood services and its reports are used by parents, teachers, early childhood education managers, school principals and trustees and by government policy makers.

The Education Act 1989 gives the Chief Review Officer the power to initiate reviews, investigate, report and publish findings on the provision of education to all young New Zealanders.

Mr Rennie said he was confident Ms Holsted would build on ERO’s position of strength developed by the previous Chief Executive, Graham Stoop.

“ERO is recognised as a strong performer, as evidenced through the recent Performance Improvement Framework review and through the OECD’s 2013 review of school evaluation,” said Mr Rennie.

Ms Holsted, whose appointment is for a five-year term, will take up her new role on 1 July 2014.

Biography of Iona Holsted
Ms Holsted has a successful track record of achieving results in corporate, policy and operational roles in complex organisations.

She started her career as a teacher, later becoming an advocate and researcher for the Public Service Association and then as General Manager of a community controlled primary health care organisation.

She was then appointed to the State Services Commission in 1995 as senior advisor for the Education Sector. In 2001 Iona was appointed Deputy Commissioner at the SSC providing advice on organisational performance and evaluation, and was directly involved in developing, implementing and evolving departmental and chief executive performance assessments. She was also involved in assessing client satisfaction with access to and confidence in public service, and machinery of government matters.

Since 2007 Ms Holsted has held four senior management roles at the Ministry of Social Development and is currently the Deputy Chief Executive, Students, Seniors and Integrity Services. This role is responsible for services to seniors (superannuation payments), Studylink, and the integrity of the benefit system. This has included leading the implementation of reforms to reduce beneficiary debt and fraud.

Ms Holsted has a Higher Diploma of Teaching from the Waikato College of Teacher Education and Victoria University of Wellington.

She has been a mentor with the New Zealand Institute of Management since 2007, a Member of the Executive Leadership Learning Network and has served on Barnardos and YMCA Greater Wellington Boards.


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