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Chief Executive Appointments: ERO & MAF

Chief Executive Appointments: Education Review Office And Ministry Of Agriculture And Forestry


The State Services Commissioner, Michael Wintringham, announced today the appointment of two departmental chief executives:

- Ms Karen Sewell has been appointed the chief executive and
the Chief Review Officer of the Education Review Office.

- Mr Murray Sherwin has been appointed the chief executive of
the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.

Ms Karen Sewell

Ms Sewell is currently the acting chief executive and acting Chief Review Officer at ERO. She has been acting chief executive since Dr Judith Aitken completed her term as chief executive, at the end of last year.

Ms Sewell was previously the national manager of review services at ERO, and she was the principal of Green Bay High School in Auckland between 1985 and 1997. She was the deputy principal at Green Bay between 1980 and 1984.

Ms Sewell has worked in the education sector – as a teacher and for ERO – for more than 30 years. She began her teaching career at Onslow College in Wellington, and she has taught in the United Kingdom.

She is a graduate of Victoria University of Wellington, and she has held a teaching fellowship in the English department at Victoria University. She has also studied at the University of London on a Nuttfield Foundation Bursary. She has taught classes on evaluation in the Masters of Public Policy and Masters of Public Management programmes at Victoria University of Wellington. She has taught classes in education leadership and management at Auckland University.

“Ms Sewell has the experience and personal style needed to secure ERO’s relationship with schools and the other Government agencies in the education sector. In particular, as the acting chief executive, she has built a sound relationship with the Ministry of Education.

“Ms Sewell has begun the process of moving ERO’s reviews to an approach that includes assisting schools and early childhood centres to improve their performance. That shift is in line with a decision by the Government, in June, following the review of the role of ERO.”

ERO employs about 170 staff and has annual Crown revenue of $18 million. The department supports and promotes improvements in education, mostly through regular formal evaluations of the performance of schools and other educational institutions.

Mr Murray Sherwin

Mr Sherwin’s appointment follows the retirement of the former chief executive, Professor Bruce Ross, early this year. Mr Sherwin will take up the position at the Ministry in November.

As chief executive of the Ministry, Mr Sherwin will also be the Director-General of Agriculture and Forestry.

Mr Sherwin is currently a deputy governor and the deputy chief executive of the Reserve Bank, a position he has held since 1995. He is the chairperson of the bank’s monetary policy committee, and he has responsibility for the bank’s economics, financial markets, currency, and building services departments.

Mr Sherwin is an economist, with more than 20 years experience in the public sector. He has worked at the OECD in Paris, and he was a member of the Prime Minister’s advisory group in the early 1980’s.

His early work with the Reserve Bank was in agricultural economics, including export forecasting. He has retained this interest, as a regular speaker at rural conferences and as a commentator in the rural media.

As the age of 35, Mr Sherwin was elected to the board of the World Bank, one of the biggest public sector organisations in the world. He represented the interests of Australia, Korea, New Zealand and Papua New Guinea, and a number of Pacific Island countries. In the role, he built a reputation as an influential board member and an effective advocate for the interests of his constituent countries.

He led extensive negotiations and consultation between the Reserve Bank and the banking industry in the early 1990’s when the Reserve Bank established a new approach to banking supervision in New Zealand. He has also lead the Reserve Bank’s international relationships in recent years, and has represented New Zealand on the regional groups established to coordinate the international response to the Asian economic crisis.

Mr Wintringham said that the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has three main roles. It provides services, including quarantine and biosecurity services, and forestry management. It sets regulatory standards, notably for primary produce grown in New Zealand, and, following recent Government decisions, it will be responsible for food safety. Finally, it provides advice to Ministers on all aspects of agriculture and forestry, domestic and international.

“Mr Sherwin brings to the position his understanding of New Zealand’s place, as a trading nation, in the international economy. He also understands the role of a State institution that sets and enforces standards for industry.

“He has the policy and operational management experience, and the understanding of the environment in which New Zealand produces and sells its primary produce, that is required to run the Ministry successfully.”

The Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry has about 1,000 staff and total annual Crown revenue of $68 million.

ENDS

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