Danielle Marks

About Danielle

He mokopuna au o Te Arawa whaanui, Fiji, Tonga hoki.
I have spent my rangatahitanga being nurtured by this community and want to give back.
My drive is my experience keeping whaanau in their whare, securing livable wages and getting our taiao thriving.


My governance experience started 8 years ago in not-for-profits like Young Workers Resource Centre and continues as a governance member of Go Eco.
My passion for local government started when I represented Te Arawa at Rotorua Lakes Council through Te Tatau o Te Arawa. I continued this passion as a Kaiwhakarite of Treaty Settlements at Waikato Regional Council.


All these opportunities have enabled me to contribute to the well-being of te iwi Maaori and our whenua.
I see the Council as an enabler of our aspirations and want to be a voice that reflects our aspirations.
Ka puu te ruha, ka hao te rangatahi.

 

 

What would be your top three priorities for Council in the next three years? Describe what you want Hamilton Kirikiriroa to be in 10 years' time.

 

1. Honouring Te Tiriti o Waitangi and acknowledging our whole history, including our unique Maaori heritage. This includes funding He Pou Manawa Ora - Council’s Maaori strategy and stop putting it on the chopping block when cuts are made.

2. Future-proofing our infrastructure - climate change is here and we need urgent action to ensure that we learn from the mistakes of other regions and that our communities have security in times of crisis.

3. Ensuring rangatahi have a city that reflects and values them - I want to see targeted engagement with young people and underrepresented communities on citywide proposals.

 

What is the most important opportunity Hamilton Kirikiriroa should explore to mitigate climate change?

 

Mitigating climate change comes down to lowering our emissions. Two-thirds of Kirikiriroa’s emissions come from private car ownership - and also causes us the headache of congestion and traffic jams. Even focusing on helping our tamariki walk, bike, scooter, or catch the bus to school is massive for reducing traffic, reducing emissions, and setting up our rangatahi with positive habits for the future - where they know they have other options to get around our city.


We also need to continue being kaitiaki to our gullies and parks to help improve our biodiversity and keep our city cool.

 

If there was one thing you could change about Hamilton Kirikiriroa immediately, what would it be?

 

Increase investment in our older areas of the city - like Fairfield, Bader, Nawton - so that all our communities have nice things like new community houses, libraries, and footpaths, not just the newest suburbs.


These suburbs are where our communities are connected and have chosen to invest in each other. They are home to intergenerational whaanau, contributing to our shared history and culture. Investing in our older areas helps us build inclusive, resilient and vibrant communities. Equity across our city is critical for our collective well-being.

 

What qualities would you bring to Council that will help our city thrive?

 

Curiosity, collaboration, and courage.


I bring a background in governance and community, across te ao Maaori, local government, and the charities sector - where I’ve collaborated with people from all walks of life to enable great outcomes for communities.


With curiosity and courage, I challenge the status quo to ensure all people are respected and encouraged to thrive in our city. The more rangatahi who see themselves in our decisions, and our Council, the more engaged I hope they’ll be - allowing me to be a better decision-maker now, but also fostering more rangatahi to take up leadership within local government.

 

Where can voters go to learn more about you?

 

Facebook: Danielle Marks for Kirikiriroa Maaori Ward

Website: www.marks4kirikiriroa.com

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