Sir Mark Solomon
Sir Mark Solomon KNZM is widely known for his commitment and contribution to his iwi, kotahitanga (unity) of Māori and the broader well-being of all New Zealanders and the environment.
A humble, compassionate and astute leader, Sir Mark worked for over twenty years as a foundry metal worker before being elected Kaiwhakahaere (Chair) of Te Rūnanga o Ngāi Tahu, the tribal council of Ngāi Tahu in 1998. During this time, his contributions have been diverse and significant, ranging from fostering educational opportunities for young Māori, to taking a strong stance against whānau violence.
A strong advocate of the Māori economy, Sir Mark was instrumental in setting up the Iwi Chair Forum in 2005 and was an original member of the Māori Economic Taskforce established in 2009. Sir Mark was named as the ‘Visionary Leader of 2012’ in the Deloitte and New Zealand Management Magazine National Business Awards.
In the 2013 New Year Honours, he was made a Knight Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to Māori and business.
In 2015, he received an Honorary Doctorate from Lincoln University as Doctor of Natural Resources, recognizing his enduring interest and concern for the natural environment.