TEU vice presidents elected unopposed.

Te Hautū Kahurangi | Tertiary Education Union is happy to confirm a trio of Vice Presidents for the 2023 year, following last week’s close of nominations for all three roles.

Returning Officer Samantha Stephen has declared Hūhana Wātene, David Kenkel and Jael Reiri elected unopposed to the positions of Te Tumu Arataki, Industrial and Professional Vice President, and Women’s Vice President respectively.

David Kenkel, a Senior Lecturer in Unitec’s School of Healthcare and Social Practice, steps into the IPC Vice Presidency after it was vacated by 2023 Tumu Whakarae | National President Julie Douglas. He says he’s delighted to get the opportunity: “This is a key moment in the progression of the tertiary sector and I’m keen to see us seize the moment and stand up for students and staff. We have a wonderful chance to be the drivers rather than the passengers, and I can’t wait to take a greater role close to the steering wheel.”

For Hūhana Wātene, a Lecturer in the School of Bridgepoint, also at Unitec, another term as Te Tumu Arataki | Māori Vice President is a chance to see through constitutional changes that have been a long time coming. “Since Moana Jackson’s Tiriti audit in 2015, we have been on a path towards becoming a truly Te Tiriti-led union and, hopefully, to be one of the first to fully incorporate Te Tiriti, co-governance, Te Reo Māori, tikanga Māori, and Kaupapa Māori into everything we do. I’m super excited to be part of the team that brings this mahi to fruition.”

And last but by no means least, is Jael Reiri, a Kaitiaki Māori Lecturer at Eastern Institute of Technology who heads into her second term as Women’s Vice President, she says she underestimated how much she would love her role over the past two years: “I’m so thankful to be able to serve another term. Te Hautū Kahurangi is a wonderful organisation to sit at the decision-making table of. You get to have a real say and to be appreciated for everything you put in.”

Jael says being part of the creation and evolution of TEU’s gender equity strategy and toolkit has been and will continue to be a real highlight. “It’s such an important resource that can be used across sectors, not just in tertiary education. I’m proud of the way our union can be role models and leaders within the labour movement in this space and in others such as the Te Tiriti rules review.”

Nominations open today (and close at the end of September) for all remaining positions on National Women’s Committee, the Industrial and Professional Committee, and National Council. For more details, click here.