Kia ora tatou, nau mai haere mai
My name is Paul Pope I was elected in October 2013 to the Otago Peninsula Community Board, and I am now the Chairman. My wife Lyn and I have lived in Portobello for the past 23 years. We recognised early on that the Peninsula would be a great place to settle and raise a family. We have two children, one who is in Year 11 at Otago Girls and our son who is in year 8 at Portobello School. In the last 23 years my wife Lyn and I have been extremely active in our community. During that time I have developed strong links in the community serving on:
- Website Editor of Portobello Community Incorporated,
- The Portobello School Board of Trustees
- The Coronation Hall Committee.
- The Otago Peninsula Museum Committee
I was educated at the University of Otago and have a Master’s Degree with distinction in Botany, a Post Graduate Diploma in Wildlife Management and Bachelor of Arts in NZ History. I have worked in local government and now in the private sector specialising in parks & recreation, coastal management, habitat restoration, environmental impact, asset management and project management. Professionally I’ve worked extensively in planning, auditing and management planning. This work has lead me onto a variety of organisations based on my professional skill and passion for Dunedin City. These include;
- President and Website Editor of the Dunedin Amenities Society
- Independent advisor to Komiti Taoka Tuku Iho (Cultural Materials Committee) for 18 years
- A Trustee for the Hereweka Harbour Cone Trust
- A Committee and Board representative for Keep Dunedin Beautiful
I’ve spent the past 25 years of my life working for the Dunedin community, personally, professionally and politically. I’ve worked with local groups, runaka, schools, farmers, students, prison inmates, volunteers and residents of rural and urban communities. It has brought me into contact with many people from all walks of life and in all stages of life. It hasn’t always been plain sailing, because every neighbourhood, suburb and township have their own trials, tribulations, aspirations, opinions and motivations. What it has taught me is a deeper appreciation for the people of this community.
I’m a very practical, down to earth person, who has a very strong dose of common-sense and an ability to find solutions to problems quickly. I’m articulate and a strong communicator, but I also call a spade a spade when I need too, and I’m not afraid to express my views and the views of my community and its citizens. I’ve learnt my communication skills in my community, through 25 years of meetings in country halls, footy club-rooms, marae, and in open paddocks working with local people to solve local problems. To do that you I learned to be a great listener and able to get to the core of issues that assist people in finding solutions. Through all of these consultation processes I’ve become keenly aware of the many issues that face communities today.
In my view, the strength of the Peninsula and the City lies in the diversity of its people and its varied communities This is what makes it a great place to live, but it also means those individual communities have individual needs. To ensure those needs of the community are met there needs to be effective representation that:
- Listens before speaking
- Consults transparently and meaningfully
- Rolls up its sleeves when there’s work to be done
In 2013 I stood for election onto the Otago Peninsula Community Board because I felt that I could bring my skills of innovation, positive thinking and consultative leadership to benefit my community. I’ve learnt significantly from my time on the Peninsula Board and its allowed me to test my skills in a public position. Its taught me that there is a thirst in the community for new thinking, innovation and new leadership.
Some of the key qualities I will bring while representing the Otago Peninsula