Autism New Zealand Annual General Meeting

The Autism New Zealand Annual General Meeting was held at our Auckland Branch offices on Saturday 2nd November. It was a pleasure to welcome Fred Astle who has been co-opted onto our board and brings enormous experience. The following is a short biography of Fred’s achievements:

Tainui te waka
Taupiri te maunga
Waikato te Iwi
Ngati Naho te Hapu

I am married to Becky (from Monterey California) and together we have 3 sons, Kelly (22), Aaron (19) and our autistic son Rene (18). I have been involved in Maori development since 1986 starting in various key roles and studied at Auckland University of Technology. As a senior Maori consultant I have been involved in advising government departments such as MOH, TEC, MOE, IRD, Auckland District Health Board, Special Needs Schools, Iwi development to local community entities. I've have project managed key projects such as starting up several health services (respite, mental health and disability) and currently assisting my home marae in Pukekohe in conjunction with the MOE in starting up a marae based Kura-a-Iwi area school (new entrants to year 13).

At present my work currently involves facilitating the Maori Secondary School Achievement contract with the University of Auckland, being the Dean of Health for an international tertiary provider based in Auckland CBD and accepting the role as the newly appointed CEO for a new tertiary provider in Auckland. In conclusion I look forward to bringing more support to Autism NZ in regards to growing its Maori focuses as we move further into the new millennium.

The annual accounts were presented and passed. Amanda Bleckman from the Ministry of Health gave an informative talk about the future plans as to how they will fund people with diagnosed autism, but no other disability in the future.

The meeting closed at 4.00pm.