Sara Cole Stratton

Ko Ngāti Kahu rāua ko Ngāti Hine ngā iwi, ko Patu Koraha rāua ko Ngati Hine ngā hapū a Sara. Sara Cole Stratton has travelled a varied and fluid path through life. Her upbringing in a bi-cultural household, totally rooted in her identity in both cultures, with a Māori mother and Pākehā father, sharing space for love and time alongside 7 other sisters (and anyone else that needed a home) helped her recognise from a very young age what love was, what justice meant and how it felt to not receive it from the world.

Sara’s story is one of personal struggle, of passion, of deep connection and of an enduring belief that you must follow your heart, and your conscience in life, whilst trying not to take yourself too seriously!

All her life, community and career experience led her to where she is now – a qualified lawyer, researcher, mother of three. A graduate of the Master of Technological Futures, Pou Awhina for Tech Futures Lab, an independent consultant to businesses and hapū. And a contributor to the World Economic Forum’s Global Futures Council on Artificial Intelligence for Humanity, and the WEF Re-Imagining Regulations for A.I. in Aotearoa, New Zealand. Amongst other things.

As an independent consultant, Sara is saying to Māori: “this time now is a time when everything is new – it’s the line in the sand of the old. So use this moment to upskill digitally, know the concerns and the opportunities it brings and create a new future that embraces fully who you are.”

Likewise, she is saying to non-Māori in Aotearoa, New Zealand, to those in businesses, organisations and to individuals: “if you want to be sustainable, to have a future, be relevant in the world, upskill culturally, know and understand Māori.”

“We are the people, the guardians, the heart and soul of this land and we have a way forward. Then you’ll understand your place in this land under Te Tiriti o Waitangi. As Andrew Little, the Treaty Negotiations Minister said on Waitangi day 2020, the bridge between Māori and Pākehā has generally been with one way traffic, Māori forced to come into Te Ao Pākehā. I’m inviting non-Māori to come across the bridge to our side. Let’s start building real relationships between us. I will be there to show you how! We have the chance to show the world what unity, collaboration and true partnership means.”

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