Co-Chairs to lead Hauraki Gulf Forum

Publish Date : 14 May 2020
Co-Chairs to lead Hauraki Gulf Forum (2)

The Hauraki Gulf Forum has become the latest institution to adopt a co-governance leadership model, taking a historic decision to appoint co-chairs: one of whom will be from and confirmed by its tangata whenua members.

The inaugural co-chairs are:

  • Nicola MacDonald (Ngāti Rehua, Patuharakeke, Te Whanau Whero and Te Ākitai (hāpu of Ngāti Wai), and Te Rarawa and Taranaki iwi), and;
  • Pippa Coom (Auckland Councillor, Waitematā and Gulf ward)

“It is really exciting that the Forum agreed to adopt a co-governance leadership model,” says Co-chair Pippa Coom.

“It takes us to the next level and brings us closer to operating in partnership under the Treaty of Waitangi to integrate and respect Te Ao Māori as well as other world views.”

“Our kaupapa is to restore the mauri of Te Moananui-ā-Toi, Tīkapa Moana, the Hauraki Gulf” says Co-chair Nicola MacDonald. “The moana is under increased pressure and the time for action is now. We need more marine protection. We need greater support for restoration work. And we need to stop marine dumping in or near to the Hauraki Gulf Marine Park.”

Co-chairs Coom and MacDonald are the first co-Chairs of the Forum and the first wāhine to hold the top job in the Forum’s 20-year history.

Their first meeting as co-chairs will take place online on 25 May 2020.

What is the Hauraki Gulf Forum?

The Hauraki Gulf Forum is a statutory body charged with the promotion and facilitation of integrated management and the protection and enhancement of the Hauraki Gulf.

The Forum has representation on behalf of the tangata whenua of the Hauraki Gulf and its islands, the Ministers of Conservation, Fisheries and Māori Development, and elected representatives from Auckland Council (including Aotea Great Barrier Island and Waiheke Island Local Boards), Waikato Regional Council, and the Waikato, Hauraki, Thames-Coromandel and Matamata-Piako District Councils.

See and

Nicola MacDonald 

Co-chairs to lead Hauraki Gulf Forum (1)
Nicola MacDonald

She is the Chair of the Aotea Conservation Park Advisory Committee and is a returning member of the Auckland Conservation Board. She served as the Chair of the Ngati Rehua – Ngatiwai ki Aotea Trust and led their Treaty of Waitangi settlement negotiations as their chief negotiator.

Nicola is a branch president of Te Puawaitanga a branch of the Maori Women’s Welfare League and is actively involved in serving her local community. Nicola has a wealth of governance and management experience and has worked in education and public health. She is currently studying for an Executive MBA and is a busy mother to her two teenage children.

Nicola is the inaugural tangata whenua co-chair of the Hauraki Gulf Forum.

Hei tiaki i te whenua                           Protect and look after the land

Hei tiaki i te moana                             Protect and look after the sea

Hei tiaki i te whanau                           Protect and look after the family

Hei tiaki i nga mokopuna                    Protect our future generations

He kaitiaki koe                        You are a guardian

He kaitiaki au                          I am a guardian

Pippa Coom

Co-Chairs to lead Hauraki Gulf Forum
Auckland Councillor Pippa Coom

Pippa was elected Councillor on Auckland Council, representing the Waitematā and Gulf ward, in 2019 after having served nine years on the Waitematā Local Board as Deputy Chair and Chair for the 2016- 2019 term. 

Pippa was born in London and immigrated to New Zealand when she was 14 attending Auckland Girls’ Grammar School.  She holds a law degree from Otago University. Following a legal career, in early 2009, Pippa became a full-time volunteer in the community focused on cycling advocacy, community development and sustainability.  In 2011 Pippa received the SBN’s Sustainability Champion award for her cycling advocacy work and as chair of the Grey Lynn Farmers Market.

Pippa is currently Deputy Chair of Auckland Council’s Environment and Climate Change Committee, a member of Local Government NZ’s National Council and is an inaugural co-chair of the Hauraki Gulf Forum.


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