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New appointments to Māori Television Service

Hon Dr Pita Sharples
Minister of Māori Affairs

17 December 2013

New appointments to Māori Television Service

Māori Affairs Minister Dr Pita Sharples is very pleased to confirm the appointment of Rhonda Kite of Te Aupōuri to the board of the Māori Television Service.

“Rhonda’s CV makes impressive reading,” said Dr Sharples. “She is the founder and CEO of Kiwa Media Ltd, an established film and television production and digital publishing house with nearly 20 years’ experience in adding Māori soundtracks to existing programming.”

“Rhonda’s pioneering work in this field earned her the title of Māori Businesswoman of the Year in 2002, and 2007 North and South magazine New Zealander of the Year in IT and Communications. She has also won international recognition and awards for her patented voice dubbing technology which is used world-wide,” he said.

“Thanks to Kiwa Media, Māori children were among the first to discover that some of the most famous cartoon characters in the world actually speak Māori. This helped our kids to realise that Māori is an important language of today’s world.

“Now, our kids are also finding out that they can read a digital copy of their favourite book on an iPhone or iPad, and it’s also in Māori – and other languages. Through Rhonda’s work with interactive Q-books, readers can record the story themselves and work with text and pictures.

“What has driven Rhonda’s life is a passion for her people and their language, and the huge opportunities for Māori to develop and use digital technologies to achieve ambitious goals. Rhonda’s understanding of digital media will be especially valuable to Māori Television as technologies converge and broadcasters and publishers compete in a rapidly-evolving business environment.

“I am pleased to welcome Rhonda to her new role, and I wish her every success in her mission,” said Dr Sharples.

“I am also pleased that Donna Ngaronoa Gardiner has agreed to be reappointed for a further three-year term. Donna is a pioneering advocate for Māori language, an experienced academic with a strong background in whānau development, and she has made a strong contribution in her time with Māori Television,” he said.

“I also want to pay tribute to Ian Taylor for his contribution to the Board over the past two years, including as Deputy Chair,” said the Minister.


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