• Ropata Taylor


    Rōpata is of Ngāti Rārua and Te Ᾱtiawa descent. He is Chairman of the Ngāti Rārua and Te Ᾱtiawa Iwi Trust, ex-officio member to the Investment Committee and Deputy Chair of Koru Investments. Ropata is also currently a general manager with Wakatū Incorporation, a Trustee of the Nelson Regional Economic Development Agency and the Nelson Sculpture Trust, and is a Ministerial appointee to the Kaiteriteri Recreation Reserve Board. He is a graduate of the University of Otago and prior to joining Wakatu was a secondary school teacher and tertiary lecturer.  

    IMG 1386

  • Russell (Barney) Thomas

    Vice Chairman

    Through Barney’s mother, his iwi connections are Ngāti Rārua, Ngāti Tama and Ngāti Toa and through his father, Ngāi Tahu. Barney has been a Trustee of the Ngāti Rārua Ᾱtiawa Iwi Trust since its inception and Vice Chair since 1998. Barney was also Chair of Ngāti Rārua Iwi Trust until he retired in 2005 and served on the Board of Trustees for Whakarewa School from 1991 to 1993. Barney is currently the Pou Kura Taiao for the Department of Conservation in the Nelson/Marlborough area, and was formerly with the Inland Revenue Department and the Department of Labour.


  • Paul Morgan


    Paul Morgan is of Ngāti Rārua and Te Mahurehure descent. He has held a number of commercial directorships over many years including Chairman of Wakatū Incorporation and land trustee of Te Ᾱwhina Marae. He has been a member of various government-appointed advisory groups and industry initiatives over the years.

    Paul Morgan

  • Emma Park


    Emma Park is of Te Ᾱtiawa decent and was appointed as a Trustee in April 2008. She is the Chair of the Audit Committee.  She was the Associate Director for Wakatü Incorporation in 2007. Emma has a Bachelor of Business Studies and is currently working as an accountant for a chartered accounting firm in Hamilton. She is a member of the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountants. Emma recently completed an Advanced Certificate in Māori Ambassadorship and Leadership and she also actively utilises her organisational and networking skills to support various individuals and community groups.

    Emma Park

  • Seenie Kahukura


    Seenie Kahukura was appointed to the Trust in 2013.  He works for the Hawkes Bay District Health Board as a part-time social worker for Wairoa Hospital and is also a mental health support worker for the iwi-based Kahungunu Executive in Wairoa. Seenie is the Tairawhiti District representative for the Service and Food Workers Union Nga Ringa Tota and has extensive trade union experience. He was a member of the first Maori organisation in the NZ Federation of Labour in the 1980s.


  • Jeremy Banks


    Jeremy Banks is of Ngāti Rārua and Rangitāne descent. He was appointed as a Trustee of NRAIT in 2013 and is a member of the Investment Committee. Jeremy is an information technology specialist and is the manager BIS2, a globally successful software development company based in Wellington. Jeremy was also formerly Associate Director for Wakatū and currently serves as Chair of Motu Kairangi, Te Kōhanga Reo.

    Jeremy family photo web

  • John Katene


    John Katene is of Te Ātiawa descent. He was re-appointed to the Board in 2013 having spent 12 years previously as a Trustee. John is also a Trustee of Te Ātiawa Manawhenua Ki Te Tau Ihu Trust and a Director with Tiakina Taiao Ltd. John is the landcare manager at Te Awhina Marae and is also the ambassador of the Marae’s tāne ora programme.

    John Katene

  • John Morgan


    It is with great sadness that we announced the passing of one of our most experienced and respected Trustees.  John Morgan has been a member of the trust since its inception in 1993.  His 21 years of service to the NRAIT whaanau and the community of Motueka will be a treasured legacy.  He has played a significant role in elevating NRAIT, our lands and its people to a strong financial and influential position. John's ongoing commitment to ensuring NRAIT and its people continue to grow and prosper is testament to his outstanding values and ambitious determination.  We will miss John, his humour and leadership.  Our thoughts are forever with Aunty Vera, Paul Morgan and the Morgan family. 

    John Morgan is of Ngāti Rārua and Te Mahurehure descent. 

    John Morgan

  • John Charleton

    Chief Operating Officer

    John grew up in Stratford, Taranaki, and is of Taranaki /Haumia descent. John joined NRAIT in 2007 as an advisor to the Board, and manager of NRAIT’s finance, investment and operational functions. John’s focus is the long-term financial sustainability of the business and growing the asset base.  He has ten years’ experience working in leading international financial institutions in the UK, the US and Australia and a broad knowledge base from a wide range of industries.


    Family photo John Charleton

  • Ivan Tava

    Kaiwhakatairanga - Development Manager

    Ivan leads the social and cultural development programme for the Trusts’ owners. Ivan is a Papua New Guinean with Tongan ancestry. He arrived in New Zealand when he was two years old and grew up in Richmond, Nelson.  Prior to joining NRAIT Ivan worked for four years in career and educational development focused on Maori and Pacific communities within Te Tau Ihu and spent a further four years leading national Maori and Pacific career development programmes. 


  • Nichola Dixon

    Project Co-ordinator & Office Manager

    Nichola Dixon was appointed to the role of Project Co-ordinator and Office Manager for NRAIT in August 2013.  She is also responsible for providing specialist support to the Te Whanake strategic programme.  Nichola has had extensive experience in both the health and education sectors in Australia and New Zealand.  Born on the West Coast and educated in Nelson and Canterbury, she now lives in Richmond with her partner Tony and son Jack. 

    Nichola Dixon

  • Renee Thomas


    Renee is of Ngāti Rarua and Ngāi Tahu descent. She was born in Blenheim and raised in Nelson. Renee has a Bachelor of Commerce, with a double major in accounting and management from the Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology. She works closely with John Charleton to ensure monthly financial transactions are in order, budgets are maintained and that monthly and year end reporting requirements are met. Renee has been working part time with NRAIT over the past seven years and is now taking on a full-time role within the team.

    Renee Thomas web