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Tertiary Education Commissioners Appointed

11 June 2002

The eight members appointed to the Transition Tertiary Education Commission (TTEC) collectively possess all the skills and attributes the new body will need to achieve a quantum shift in the performance and connectedness of New Zealand’s tertiary education sector, says Associate Education (Tertiary Education) Minister Steve Maharey.

Six new members were agreed to by Cabinet yesterday. Steve Maharey said all will bring a detailed knowledge of the issues relevant to the tertiary sector from both an institutional and stakeholder point of view. The new members will join the current Chair and Deputy Chair of TTEC, Dr Andrew West and Kaye Turner, and it is intended that all will be confirmed in their roles once the Tertiary Education Commission is formally established by legislation.

Steve Maharey said the 8-member Commission will be responsible for overseeing the reshaping of New Zealand’s post-school education system to better meet the challenges of developing a tertiary education sector which maintains excellence, relevance and access.

“Tertiary education has a key contribution to make to New Zealand’s economic and social development. Our tertiary education reforms, of which the Tertiary Education Commission is the centrepiece, are designed to ensure we build a well-educated, skilled and adaptable nation.

“When determining the membership of the Commission it was important that we were able to appoint people from the range of stakeholders that participate directly in the sector, while at the same time ensuring excellence in governance of this new Crown entity,” Steve Maharey said.

The Transition Tertiary Education Commission will comprise:

- Dr Andrew West (Chair) - appointed in August 2001;

- Associate Professor Kaye Turner (Deputy Chair) - appointed in August 2001;

- John Blakey, Chief Executive of the Forest Industries Training Organisation;

- Shona Butterfield, Chief Executive of The Open Polytechnic of New Zealand;

- Jim Donovan, Managing Director, Isambard Ltd and a member of the government’s ICT Taskforce;

Andrew Little, National Secretary of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union;

- Tina Olsen-Ratana (Ngati Porou), Manager of Te Kokiri Marae at Seaview and a board member of the New Zealand Qualifications Authority; and

- Dr Ian Smith, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and International) at the University of Otago.

Biographical information on the Commissioners is attached.

Transition Tertiary Education Commissioners: biographical information

Dr Andrew West (Chair) was appointed Chair of the Transition Tertiary Education Commission in August 2001. Previously he was Chief Executive of the New Zealand Qualifications Authority and is a former Chief Executive of the Institute of Geological & Nuclear Sciences. He has extensive experience in the establishment and management of crown entities in the complex science and technology sector.

Associate Professor Kaye Turner (Deputy Chair) was appointed Chair of the Transition Tertiary Education Commission in August 2001. Previously she was Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) at the University of Waikato. She has an academic background is in the law and she has lectured in New Zealand and overseas. Ms Turner has an in-depth understanding of the university system from an academic and management perspective and has broad experience working with a wide range of groups within the tertiary sector.

John Blakey is the Chief Executive of the Forest Industries Training Organisation and has a broad experience in education at all levels, particularly industry training. He has taken a leading role in tertiary education and training policy development and has an excellent overview of the sector and the important complementary roles played by the Industry Training Organisations. He is the Chair of the Industry Training Federation, a member of the Training and Education sub-committee of the NZ Forest Industries Council, and a member of the Health and Safety sub-committee of the NZ Forest Owners Association.

Shona Butterfield is the Chief Executive of the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand, a position held since 1989. She has had a long career in education, both in teaching and in administration and has been an active participant in the development of policy for education and training. She was a member of the Tertiary Education Advisory Commission (TEAC) and has been a member of a number of professional groups and boards relating to vocational education.

Jim Donovan is the Managing Director of Isambard Ltd, a management and investment consulting company. He has held senior management roles in distribution and technology businesses in Britain and NZ and is a strategy consulting partner with Ernst and Young, working with medium and large companies in New Zealand. He has a strong understanding of the needs of business in relation to skill development for business growth and their requirements of the tertiary education system.

Andrew Little is the National Secretary of the Engineering, Printing and Manufacturing Union, the largest trade union in New Zealand with 55,000 members. He has had extensive involvement with the tertiary education sector, having been President of the Victoria University Students Association (1987) and the New Zealand University Students Association (1988-89). He has also served two separate terms on the Victoria University Council (both as a student representative and as an elected member).

Tina Olsen-Ratana (Ngati Porou) is the Manager of Te Kokiri Marae at Seaview in Lower Hutt, a complex that, among other activities, provides community education at all levels from Te Kohanga Reo to tertiary level training. She has broad experience in all facets of education and in the administration of education and training, as well as a strong national perspective and knowledge of training needs for Maori across the tertiary sector. She has been a board member of the New Zealand Qualifications Authority since 1999 and from 1991 to 1999 was the National Co-ordinator for the Association of Maori Providers of Training and Education. She was also a member of the Youth Training/Training Opportunities Review Team.

Dr Ian Smith is the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and International) at the University of Otago. He has experience in governance and executive management in industry and in other areas of the public and private sectors, as well as experience in both New Zealand and Australia of service on major government boards. Dr Smith’s experience includes the fostering of industry-tertiary sector relationships from both the university and industry positions. In Western Australia he chaired an industry/tertiary education committee to establish co-operation between tertiary institutions and industry through sharing facilities and teaching.

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