September 06, 2019
Outspoken academic Pihama takes Unitec role
The director of Unitec's Ngā Wai a Te Tui Māori and Indigenous Research Centre says its new professor is a rock star of the Māori research world.
Leonie Pihama, who has been the director of Waikato University's Te Kotahi Research Institute, will take up the half time position next month.
Jenny Lee-Morgan says she will bring her own projects as well as contribute to other work undertaken at the centre.
As well as her university activities, Associate Professor Pihama has maintained a high public profile, from taking on property magnate Sir Bob Jones over racist newspaper columns to helping organise the Hands Off Our Tamariki march on parliament.
"She's what the late Ranginui Walker would have been proud of saying academics are the conscience of society and she has always been courageous in that space speaking for kaupapa Māori issues and against racism so she has led lots of kaupapa Māori activities above and beyond research too," Professor Morgan says.
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