Meet the IKHMG Team

The team at IKHMG are a diverse group of passionate people will a broad range of skills and experience.  One thing we all have in common is our commitment to creating a healthy and productive Kaipara Harbour.

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Willie Wright

Programme Manager

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Kathryn Easton

Senior Field Advisor

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Melissa Barrell

Senior Administrator

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Trevor Tucker

Field Advisor

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Patricia Clark

Matauranga Maori Advisor

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Jane Mehana

Junior Administrator

William (Willie) Wright (Te Uri o Hau / Ngati Whatua/Ngati Porou) – Programme Manager of the Integrated Kaipara Harbour Management Group (IKHMG), initiated by Ngāti Whātua in 1996, formalised in 2005 as a construct under the Te Uri o Hau Settlement Trust's environmental arm.   Willie and his wife Elsa have two daughters and have 5 grandchildren.  Willie is a Treaty negotiator for the settlement of the Kaipara Harbour and future co-governance of the Kaipara Moana; he is a member of the Joint Committee established to govern the Kaipara Moana Remediation, a project budget of $300 million that spans over 10 years.

Kathryne (Katie) Easton is our Lead Field Advisor.  Katie has worked with IKHMG on many projects over the years and currently runs a farm in Poroti.

Jane Mehana is our Junior Administrator.  

Ko te pū, te mōrē, te weū, te akā, te reā

Ko te wāo nūi, te kūne, te kōre, te pō

Ko ngā tāngata Māori na rāngi rāua ko papā

Ko tēnei te tīmatānga o te aō

Ko Jane Mehana tāku ingōa

He ūri āhau nō Te ūri kōpura ki ūtā, te hāpua, te aūpoūri ki te tai. I te taha ō tāku mātua

He ūri ahau nō ngāti hau ki ūtā, ngāti kōrora ki te tai. I te taha o tāku whāea.

Engari ka mārena au I tētahi tāngata o te ūri o hau, he ūri whakatīpū ia o Paikea Te Heke Ua, nō Otāmatea whenua.

My name is Jane Mehana and I sit as junior administrator for the Integrated Kaipara Harbour Management Group. I was employed by Willie in July 2019 and sit firmly engaged in the Kaipara Moana.

I am of Māori and Irish descent. My taha Māori is very important to me and my lifestyle. I align myself, whānau and tamariki with our Māramataka Māori and practice our Tikangā every chance I get. I respect and treasure all things in Te Aō Māori and the many taonga handed down to us by our tūpuna. Te Rēo Māori/Māori Language, Mātauranga Māori/Māori knowledge, Tikangā Māori and Tikangā Mārae/Māori practices inclusive of Mārae practice and Te Tīritī ō Waitangi/ The Treaty of Waitangi are all very prominent in my life.

Living under the kōrowai/cloak of Te Aō Māori has helped me reach my highest highs and embrace and accept the lowest lows. It has guided me down my correct path and helped to shape the person I am today.

Kō aū te Aō Māori, ko te Aō Māori kō aū – I am the world of Maori and the world of Maori is me.


Melissa (Mel) Barrell is our Senior Administrator and comes from a background in both public and private sectors but is passionate about New Zealand's environments.  

I joined IKHMG in June 2020 as the Senior Administrator.  I am of Irish and Maori descent (Te Rarawa) but can also trace my family history through Sweden, England and Spain.  I have 20 years experience in Office Administration in diverse industries including media, healthcare, event management, construction, IT and worked for companies including Sky TV (NZ), the NHS (UK), The Royal Society (UK), Discovery Channel (UK) and NDHB (NZ).  In my early 20's I spent 8 years living in London, UK but missed Aotearoa and longed to be back home by the ocean.  I returned to New Zealand in 2008 and love living in beautiful Whangarei.

Trevor Tucker is our second Field Advisor and is a proud ex-farmer.

Patricia (Pat) Clark is our Matauranga Maori Advisor and our newest recruit.    

Kia ora koutou,

Ko Patricia Clark toku ingoa. I whakapapa to Kaikohe (Ngāpuhi) and grew up on a dairy farm in the South Hokianga. I have recently completed study and work at the University of Auckland in the areas of environmental science and mātauranga Māori. My passion is freshwater ecology which was my field of study for my masters. It’s great to be back home in Northland applying my knowledge and working alongside and learning from our Māori communities. In my spare time I like to be outdoors, playing hockey, horse riding and staying active. I live in Mangawhai and spend a lot of time at the beach. I look forward to working alongside everyone within the catchment and integrating mātauranga Māori into the restoration of the Kaipara.