Vaka Tautua is a not-for-profit limited liability company registered with the Charities Commission. We are governed by a board of directors. The directors are from culturally diverse backgrounds and have extensive experience in the health and disability, social services, community development, youth development and education sectors. All have invaluable “lived experience” with people with disabilities, people experiencing mental illness and older peoples which they bring to the talanoa (discussions, exchanges, knowledge creation and transfer space). Four directors represent our parent trusts, PIASS and Malologa (2 each), while the remaining directors are independent.
Tunumafono FA'Amoetauloa Avaula Fa'amoe
Tunumafono Fa'amoetauloa Avaula Fa'amoe MNZM (Ava) is Chair of the board of directors of Vaka Tautua and Vice Chair of PIASS Trust. He is a self-employed managing director for Dauntless Blue Limited.
Ava has helped establish organisations, notably PIASS Trust, Taikura Trust and Vaka Tautua. He is a former trustee of Taikura Trust. Ava is also active in civil society matters. He was an elected member of the Otara-Papatoetoe Local Board, Auckland Council; and previously served as the Chair of the Otara Community Board, Manukau City Council. Ava is currently a board member of the Community Legal Services South Auckland.
Viiami Toafa is Vice Chair of the board of directors of Vaka Tautua and Chair of Malologa Trust. Currently he is employed as Relationship Manager at The Cause Collective. Previous positions include Practice and Public Health Manager of Langimalie Health Services and General Manager of West Fono. Viliami is a recipient of the Pacific Business Trust, MIT Pacific Business Executive of the Year Award.
Dr. Siale 'Alo Foliaki
Dr. Siale 'Alo Foliaki ('Alo) is a Director of the board of directors of Vaka Tautua and Chair of PIASS Trust. He has over 20 years' experience as a psychiatrist, primarily with Counties Manukau District Health Board (CMDHB). 'Alo has helped establish several Pacific health organisations including the Tongan Health Society, the Faleola Services (Pacific Adult Mental Health Services) and Vaka Toa (Pacific Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services) for CMDHB. He was lead Pacific researcher in Te Rau Hinengaro the New Zealand Mental Health Survey.
Dr. Lana Perese
Dr. Lana Perese is a Director of the board of directors of Vaka Tautua and trustee of Malologa Trust. She has strong analytical and research experience and skills obtained from more than 25 years in the academia and government research sectors. Lana holds a doctorate from The University of Auckland. Currently she is Auckland Manager at Malatest International, where she leads projects focused on the Auckland region and Pacific peoples. Previous positions include Pacific Health Research Manager at The University of Auckland and Principal Evaluator and Researcher at the Ministry of Pacific Island Affairs (now Ministry for Pacific peoples).
Nadeen Lanuola Papali’i
Nadeen Lanuola Papali'i (Nadeen) is a Director of the board of directors of Vaka Tautua. Currently she is Director of the Health Science Academy at Tangaroa College, Otara. This involves overseeing the student mentoring programme and monitoring student performance. Nadeen holds a Masters of Engineering with First Class Honours in Environmental Engineering from The University of Auckland; and engineering degree from The University of Manchester. She has volunteered in the Pacific with Engineers Without Borders NZ and won numerous awards including the Prime Minister’s Pacific Youth Award in Leadership in 2011.
Nadeen is passionate about raising achievement and providing opportunities, on a local scale, for young people to gain confidence and experience success. On a global scale, she hopes to use her experience to address poor water quality in developing countries.
Dr. Corina Grey
Dr. Corina Grey is a Director of the board of directors of Vaka Tautua. She is a public health physician and is currently the Pacific health data and insights lead at Auckland District Health Board. Corina has medical and doctoral degrees from The University of Auckland, and has worked in various roles at the Ministry of Health, The University of Auckland, and Counties Manukau, Waitematā and Auckland District Health Boards.
Born in Samoa and raised in New Zealand since the age of 5, Corina is passionate about Pacific health equity and improving services and outcomes for those with disabilities and chronic health conditions. In addition to Vaka Tautua, she also currently sits on the board of Diabetes Foundation Aotearoa.