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Prison Director - Manawatū Prison

Full time
Expires in: EXPIRED
No Longer Available


Mō tēnei tūranga mahi | About this role

Prison Director – Manawatū Prison 

  • Exciting senior leadership opportunity
  • Make a difference, change the lives of men and their whānau
  • Lead, drive and support transformational change, best practice and continuous improvement.

Kōtahi anō te kaupapa, ko te oranga o te iwi | There is only one purpose to our work: the wellness and wellbeing of people.

Leadership of the transformational change required to deliver on the intent and outcomes of Hōkai Rangi will be a key focus of this role for the next several years.

As an organisation we are committed to providing an approach for the people we manage that recognises the complex and entwined histories of severe trauma, mental health issues, substance abuse, unhealthy relationships and poverty that have often contributed to their offending.

With the department's release of Te Ara Whakamua (The Pathway Forward) and its implementation commencing April 2024, this role provides an exciting opportunity to embrace this transformational way of working. The role currently is a member of the Lower North Region Leadership Team, reporting to the Regional Commissioner, however, will shift to leading and contributing to a new regional leadership group across a network spanning custody, Pae Ora and community. The role will also be a key leader within the Prison Network, reporting to a Deputy Commissioner Men's Prison. 

About the role | Mō te tūnga

The role of Prison Director at Manawatū Prison is a unique and privileged position that requires a focus on Hōkai Rangi. This role must ensure optimal delivery of prison related and continuous improvement initiatives whilst balancing care, security, health, education, rehabilitation and reintegration imperatives for our men.

With the scope and accountability to deliver high performance results this role is responsible for strategic thought leadership, governance and network alignment, as well as leadership of site delivery of all day-to-day operational functions and the pro-active identification and management of risk across all facets of the operation.  Safety and wellbeing of all those at Manawatū Prison must be top of mind. 

The development of effective relationships with both internal and external stakeholders will be key to success in this role, with an emphasis on teamwork and co-operation between all parties. The journey of men within the justice system does not stop at the prison gates so a focus on ensuring the men in our care and management can reach their potential on release is also a key aspect of the prison's responsibilities, in conjunction with Community Corrections, Pae Ora, iwi and other partners.


About you | Mōu

You will be an emotionally intelligent, empathetic and supportive as well as being a visible and values-led leader.  You will possess the courage, passion and determination to deliver outstanding results, raising the bar for quality practice and high performance.  Having a deep understanding, appreciation for, and genuine interest in the issues the men in our care face is essential for success.

You will need to demonstrate agility and commitment to leading transformational change, possess significant experience at a senior level with relevant leadership skills and attributes as well as sound influencing and stakeholder management skills as you further develop partnerships with iwi, relevant external agencies and other key stakeholders to ensure we achieve the best outcomes for the men we manage.  

We would like to hear from you if you are an experienced leader with:

  • Demonstrable experience working in a prison facility
  • Proven capability at both a strategic and operational level
  • Significant knowledge and experience of the requirements of caring for people through a trauma informed and culturally diverse lens
  • Commitment to develop a strong leadership team dedicated to achieving outcomes & displaying our core values
  • Excellent communication and relationship skills with an ability to influence outcomes
  • In-depth knowledge of and experience in rehabilitation & re-integration best practice
  • Sound knowledge and understanding of the department's obligations in relation to our Crown-Māori partner status
  • Good understanding of, and appreciation for meeting, Te Tiriti o Waitangi obligations.
  • Focus on lifting cultural capability, driving innovation & continuous improvement initiatives
  • In-depth understanding of the factors impacting on rehabilitation & reintegration for people who have committed offences.
  • High level of understanding and anticipation of political and reputational risk
  • An in-depth knowledge of risk management processes and assurance requirements

Please ensure your CV and cover letter address the key competences and responsibilities of the role.   A copy of the position description is attached with further detail.  All applications must be submitted online by 1159pm on 3 December 2023.

Utu ā-tau | Salary

The salary range for this position is  $132,710 to $187,355, with the mid point (100%) of $156,129. Appointment and remuneration will reflect skills and experience relevant to the role. 

About us | Mō mātou

Ara Poutama Aotearoa is a name that has been gifted to us by Iwi and conveys the responsibility we have to support and guide those in our care to reach their potential.  Our strategy, Hōkai Rangi (, provides a clear direction of travel - one that builds on the good things that are already happening, and, most importantly, how we can innovate to find new ways of doing things to achieve better outcomes for Māori, whānau and communities. 

It is an exciting time and we continue to seek out talented individuals who are committed to an inclusive, vibrant workplace. We recognise and celebrate the uniqueness of individuals, and that of the collective talent in our whānau.

For reporting and transparency, it is important that all applications are submitted through our careers site.  If you want to find out more about a career with us, visit or email our team at