I know what it’s like to be a leader and feel the heat! I've worked in several leadership roles within New Zealand and internationally. For example, I was New Zealand representative teacher at the United Nations International School (New York), Foundation Head of Humanities at the United World College of the Adriatic (Italy) and Associate Director of the International School of Amsterdam. Returning home I was appointed Principal of Glendowie College (Auckland), which became a top performer and with the country’s highest achieving senior student. I know what it takes to get to the top and how to survive the journey.
I’m particularly interested in linking research to practice. I hold two Masters Degrees with Honours and ten years of large-scale leadership project experience at The University of Auckland. There, I was Foundation Director of the First-time Principals Programme (the national induction programme for all new principals of schools), then Foundation Director of The Centre for Educational Leadership. When your colleagues are distinguished academics like Distinguished Professor Viviane Robinson, and Professors John Hattie, Helen Timperley and Stuart McNaughton, you need to understand current research and how to link it to improving leadership practice. As an educational leadership consultant, I now focus on helping leaders to connect powerful research findings to their on-the-job leadership work to enhance student outcomes.
I’ve had the privilege of coaching more than 200 individual educational leaders and 40 leadership teams in New Zealand and Australia, as well as provide system-level seminars and workshops for principals, assistant principals, middle and aspiring leaders. Through my seminars and workshops, I’ve reached over 4000 educational leaders in recent years. At conferences I give keynote addresses and workshops. The benchmark for all of my work is the world-class, quality assured research which identifies those leadership practices most likely to improve student outcomes. I invite critical feedback through participant evaluations, for quality assurance and my self-improvement.
Acknowledgements I have received include: New Zealand representative teacher at the United Nations International School (New York); a UNICEF Award and Prince of Wales Medallion; an Auckland Citizens Award; a Sir Woolf Fisher Fellowship; Secondary Principals Association of New Zealand Leadership in Education Award; and Honorary Life Member of The University of Auckland Centre for Educational Leadership. Leaders who inspire me through their exceptional qualities of moral purpose, integrity, courage, eloquence and humility are Atul Gawande, Nelson Mandela, Lorraine Monroe, Graham Nuthall and Barack Obama.
I’m a family man living in the world famous vineyards and art deco region of Hawkes Bay. My wife is a recently retired early childhood educator; we have two adult sons and five grandchildren. I keep myself fit at a local gym, walking, gardening, and hiking. I’m an avid reader of leadership, biographies, travel and fiction, and an enjoyer of classical music, opera, theatre, photography and classic movies. I’m a traveller at heart, both in New Zealand and further afield. I’m currently learning to be a better photographer, with a long way to go! And, of course, a loyal All Blacks supporter.