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New Race Relations Commissioner appointed

30 August 2002 Media Statement

New Race Relations Commissioner appointed

Wellingtonian Joris de Bres has been appointed Race Relations Commissioner, Associate Justice Minister Margaret Wilson announced today.

He replaces Gregory Fortuin who withdrew his name from consideration for re-appointment in early April.

Mr de Bres has held the position of General Manager, External Relations for the Department of Conservation since 1997 but is currently on secondment to the chief executive’s office of the Department of Child Youth and Family Services.

He has held a number of other senior management roles including Acting Chief Executive of the New Zealand Historic Places Trust, Manager Public Awareness for the Department of Conservation, Assistant General Secretary (Industrial) with the New Zealand Public Service Association, and PSA Regional Secretary for Auckland and Northland.

Fifty-five-year-old Mr de Bres is also a former Secretary/Organiser for Citizens’ Association for Racial Equality and has worked with diverse groups and migrants.

“Mr de Bres has had a close involvement in issues relating to Maori, the Treaty of Waitangi and racial equality. This has given him a very sound grasp of the key race relations issues,” Margaret Wilson said.

“His experience as a member of a Dutch immigrant family has also fitted him well for the job which raises issues emerging from New Zealand’s increasingly multi-cultural society.”

Opposition parties were informed of Mr de Bres’ appointment this week, Margaret Wilson said.

ENDS

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