New Zealand educator and Māori leader Pembroke Peraniko ‘Pem’ Bird has won the Te Ururangi award for his contribution to education.
Ten years ago Bird received the Queen’s Service Medal for his services to the education sector, and has since played a huge part in the development of the Māori language strategy, raising achievement in his principal role at Te Kura Kaupapa Māori Motuhake o Tāwhiiuau in Murupara, and recently became a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to education and Māori last year.
As principal he has managed to sustain and improve the level of academic achievement, with the students excelling above the Māori Medium National Standards.
Bird became the president of the Māori Party in 2010 and reigned in that role for 3 years and has served on several other Ministry of Education advisory and reference groups, including the Education Funding Review advisory group from 2016.
He has held many chairman roles at national level such as past chairman of Waka Moemoea, co-chairman of Nga Kura a Iwi, past chairman of Te Ha o Te Ora Creating Safe Communities, a member of the Bay of Plenty Police Iwi Advisory Group, and locally is chairman of several marae organisations and today he is acknowledged for all of his work he continues to distribute into the community.