Law – Strategy – Policy


A multi-disciplinarian executive leader and legal professional with over 15 years’ experience across public, community and private sectors with key competencies in:

• Building collaborative performance cultures
• Problem identification and solutions
• Strategic planning
• Strategic management
• Leadership and support to leadership
• Crisis management
• Policy (public and organisational) development and implementation
• Board reporting
• P&L management

and subject matter expertise in:

• Commonwealth, State and local government policy
• International law and international relations
• Australian politics and government
• Indigenous affairs
• Law (administration of trusts, residential tenancies, criminal)
• Investment management
• Campaigning

An Australian born in New Zealand, my interests include, academically, politics, international relations, history and law, and, recreationally, music, the arts and gaming.

My name

I was named after two people, Rewi Maniaputo and Rewi Alley.

Rewi Manga Maniaputo was the tribal leader of the Ngati Manioputo in the 19th century. He supported the King movement and led Ngati Manioputo warriors into battle against the British in the 1860s, the most notable battle being the three day siege of Orakau. When called on to surrender he is reputed to have said: ‘Ka whawhai tonu matou, Ake! Ake! Ake!’ (We will fight on for ever and ever). More information can be found in the Dictionary of New Zealand Biography if you’d like to learn a little more.

Rewi Alley was named after Rewi Manga Manioputo, born in 1897 and moved to China in 1927. There he worked in Shanghai on a variety of famine and flood relief programs, eventually joining the Communist Party. He helped establish INDUSCO (the Industrial Co-operative) in the late 1930s, but was dismissed from that work by the Nationalist government because of his ties to the Communist Party. The Dictionary of New Zealand Biography credits him with the creation of the phrase ‘Gung Ho, Work Together’. While well-known and well-regarded in New Zealand prior to the accession to power of the Communist Party in 1949, during the Cold War his reputation in the country of his birth was diminished. This changed with the establishment of diplomatic relations between the two countries in 1972, the year that I was born. I have a pamphlet written by Rewi Alley, given to me by my friend Peter Quinn, entitled ‘Oceania’.

‘Oqurum’ (spelling drawn from the Guinness Book of World Records, 1984)


‘Oqurum’, or ‘HWQWRWM’, with thanks to Wikipedia.

I came across the word ‘oqurum’, meaning ‘I have read (this or it)’, in an old copy of the Guiness Book of World Records. In 1984 it held the record as the only surviving word in the shortest language in the world, the Khazar language, spoken by the Khazar people. I haven’t looked at the latest records, but presumably if another language has been reduced to one word and it has five or less letters that would have bumped Khazar off the pedestal.

For more information about the Khazar check out the excellent entry in Wikipedia.


Adam Connors says:

I’ve been meaning to hand you this link – a Rewi Alley feature I did at SBS a few years back.

Rewi Alley’s gung ho life
Wednesday, July 12, 2006

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