Join us as we hear from a Panel of Industry Experts on what the Budget 2020 means for the future of Pacific businesses and communities, the labour market, education and housing in the Waikato Region.

This event will take place directly after the Annual General Meeting 2020.


  • Cost: Free
  • Date: Monday 29th June
  • Time: 5:00 – 5:45pm (AGM) 5:45 – 6:30 (Business Round Table event) 6:30 – 7:00pm (Networking).
  • Location: McCaw Lewis, Level 6, 586 Victoria Street, Hamilton map
  • Facilitator: Aidan Warren – Managing Director, MCaw Lewis
  • Drinks and nibbles provided

Register here to the Annual General Meeting 2020 to attend the Business Round Table event held directly after.

Meet our Panel of Industry Experts:

Delwyn Abraham – Principal Regional Advisor, MBIE – Provincial Development Unit

Delwyn is of Ngaati Mahuta, Te Patupoo, Ngaati Whawhakia, Ngaati Amaru, Ngaa Puhi and Ngaati Whaatua descent. Delwyn is currently the Principal Regional Advisor at the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment for the Waikato Region. This is a leadership role offering opportunities for the provincial growth funding to the region to grow local economic development. Her mahi at MBIE comes after spending time as the Head of Operations ki Te Waenga at Te Wananga o Aotearoa, and twenty years within Spark NZ Ltd within the inventory, strategy, investment and procurement areas of the companies mobile and fixed networks.

Delwyn is heavily involved in her community holding roles as Chair of the Waikato Community Lands Trust, Deputy Chair of the Waikato District Council Creative Communities Committee, Trustee of Korowai o Maata Trust, Trustee for Te Patupoo Iwi Trust and member of the Waikato Plan Leadership Committee. Finally, Delwyn is the director of her 3 businesses, Keep It Maori Ltd, Te Kuru Group Ltd and Waka Ora in conjunction with managing several property portfolios’, which includes providing housing needs for whanau within her iwi, and farming opportunities for her wider whanau.

Delwyn attained her MBA with the University of Waikato in conjunction with the Waikato-Tainui College of Research and Development and graduated with distinction in November 2018. She is passionate about empowering and uplifting the wellbeing of Maori. As such, her major research project focused on economic mana motuhake for marae which looks at a collective approach for wellbeing for the marae and marae whanau.

In her spare time, Delwyn balances her life through her experiences of living on a 10 acre lifestyle block nicknamed “The Ponderosa” under the philosophy of living life, loving life and learning from life.

Felila Asiata-Feausi – National Growth & Partnership Manager, Alignz Recruitment

Born and bred in Waikato. The eldest grandchild of the founders of the Samoan Methodist Church in Hamilton: Rev. Fiaalii and Ituaiga Nonoa. The eldest of eight siblings (four brothers and three sisters) and married with two children: a 12-year-old daughter and 10-year-old son. Felila attended Knighton Normal Primary School, Peachgrove Intermediate and Hamilton Girls High School, attaining her Bachelor in Media Arts majoring in Communications at WINTEC.

“After high school – like most teens, I was not sure what I wanted to do, so I found work as a Forklift operator & freight handler for 3 years in the Logistics industry. I loved the culture and working with a team based near Mangere Airport, Auckland. Like any late teen, I enjoyed making money and brought my first car. Shortly after, I met a casual worker who was much older and as we talked more, I realised how much this job meant to him. This casual job paid his household bills and supported his family (with 5 kids). Shortly after, I resigned from my role so he could be offered the permanent position. His story made me realise “I want to help our people” true lessons in life and stories from our people is what drives me and why I do what I do. I then went on to WINTEC to study.”

Felila is an accomplished and result driven professional with over 15 years’ experience working in the HR & Recruitment Industry – internally and externally covering all blue and white collar disciplines across various industries: Mining & Resources, Oil & Gas, Engineering, Civil Construction, Infrastructure, Telecommunication & Services and Professional & Executive roles. Her initial exposure to recruitment stemmed initially in NZ, then with the drive to learn more she travelled across the ocean(s) to gain more experience in the UK and Australia.

Felila has recently returned to NZ from Australia to work for the Samoan family owned business Alignz Recruitment. She is passionate about people and the communities. Working in collaboration and partnership with other businesses and providers to bridge the gap in providing opportunities for all people: Pasifika, Maori and Mainstream into meaningful and sustainable employment or further education and improving outcomes.

“I love challenges especially roadblocks… these drive me to look around it, over it and where possible, through it…  there is a way and a solution. As a leader it is important to stay positive and to keep empowering everyone we meet and work with.”

Pelenato Sakalia – Chief Executive, Pacific Business Trust

Pelenato is currently the CEO for the Pacific Business Trust, a Pacific Economic Agency delivering services to achieve prosperity through partnerships, building a successful future for Pacific businesses and communities.

Pelenato began his career in central government, working for the State Services Commission. He progressed into organisational development, before focusing on transformational programme management. For the past 20 years, he has operated within economic development, spending time within the private sector, and undertaking advisory work within Government.

Dr Keakaokawai Hemi – Assistant Vice Chancellor – Pacific, University of Waikato

Dr Keakaokawai Varner Hemi is the first Assistant Vice Chancellor Pacific appointed by the University of Waikato.  She is Kanaka Maoli and part of Na ‘Ohana o Kalama from Lāʻie, Oahu, Hawaiʻi through her mother, as well as Cherokee/Tsalagi from Bohannon Mountain in Northwest Arkansas through her father.

Dr Hemi has a background in small business ownership and administration, as well as non-profit work.   She earned her Bachelor of Laws with first class honours from Te Piringa – Faculty of Law, University of Waikato in 2007.  After completing her doctorate at Waikato in 2016, Dr Hemi taught as a lecturer at Te Piringa where she also served as Associate Dean Undergraduate and Faculty Pacific Island Adviser.  She is a Research Fellow of the Public Law and Policy Research Unit and a member of the Māori and Indigenous Governance Centre at Te Piringa.

Dr Hemi’s 2016 doctoral thesis departs from the 2006 US Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals case Doe v Kamehameha Schools where a Native Hawaiian school was sued for racial discrimination because it preferred Native Hawaiians in admissions.  The thesis traverses US constitutional law, legal theory, international human rights, international and domestic indigenous rights, and New Zealand constitutional law.   She has also taught in these areas. Dr Hemi’s research interest areas continue to include Pacific peoples and the law, Pacific and indigenous education rights, and equality and non-discrimination in relation to indigenous peoples.  Dr Hemi is currently a co-leader with Dr Sarah-Jane Tiakiwai on the Ako Aotearoa project “Data-informed Initiatives to Enhance Māori and Pacific Student Achievement”. Her recent publications include: “Closing Geographical Distances: The Value of a New Zealand Perspective on the Admission Policy of a Native Hawaiian School” (Waikato Law Review 2016), “Daniels, Disability and the Human Right to Education” (NZ Law Journal 2017) and the book chapter, “Reclaiming Hawaiian Sovereignty” (S Ratuva (ed) Palgrave Handbook of Ethnicity (Palgrave Macmillan 2019)).

Namulauulu Lale Ieremia – Director, PCM Consulting

Namulauulu Lale Ieremia is an accomplished Executive and Director in the Development and Construction Industry throughout New Zealand and the South Pacific. He is also a founding Executive of the Waikato Pacific Business Network.

He has recently returned to the Waikato and established PCM Consulting Ltd, an integrated project and construction management business leading some key projects in the Waikato.

Lale holds various leadership roles in our business and community groups where he hopes to work toward transformational change that will include and benefit our pacific businesses and communities at large.

Come along with your questions, meet the panel and get to know the executive and members of the Waikato Pacific Business Network.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Go Top