Deborah heads the Māori business team advising clients on legal, policy and strategic issues relating to Māori and the Treaty of Waitangi. This includes Treaty settlement matters, legislative drafting, public policy and legislative reforms, Māori land and resource development, iwi and hapū corporate structuring, consolidation and development. Deborah’s clients include central and local government, Crown entities, private sector, Māori land owners and iwi and hapū collective bodies.
Deborah’s primary role for most of her clients is to provide legal and strategic advice as to how they can manage major transfer projects, strategic and project planning, and to devise new and creative solutions to complex or difficult problems.
Deborah has expert knowledge of the law regarding the environment and natural resources, conservation, public lands regulation, public works, marine and coastal regulation and spatial planning. She has worked on coastal marine projects, new regimes for management of offshore islands, projects for native forest, exotic forestry projects, applications for Marine and Coastal orders and has undertaken numerous major property transactions for settling iwi and government agencies in the context of Treaty settlements.
Deborah has been invited by overseas governments and agencies to address Ministers, judges and advisory panels on these issues and be part of public funded research teams investigating and reporting on management and protection of indigenous knowledge, coastal marine management and reform of conservation law to enhance biodiversity and indigenous peoples’ involvement.
Admission date: 1979
Deborah has advised: