Superintendent Scott Fraser was welcomed into his new position as Central District Commander with a pöwhiri at the Te Rangimarie Marae in Rangiotu on Wednesday.
He takes over from Chris de Wattignar, who is now Iwi and Communities Assistant Commissioner and was at today’s celebration, along with Assistant Commissioner-Investigations Sue Schwalger, Assistant Commissioner-Districts Sandra Venables, Central District Police staff and executive, iwi, community leaders, whānau and friends.
Superintendent Scott Fraser told today’s gathering in the Manawatū that he’s looking forward to working with the diverse communities across the Central District and giving them what they expect and deserve.
Superintendent Fraser referred to the phrase Whakarongo pīkari, and his plans to listen attentively during his first few months as Central District Commander.
“I don’t plan on coming in and enforcing change. It doesn’t mean I am going to do nothing, but it means I am going to listen to my staff and the community.”
Assistant Commissioner District Sandra Venables was in Manawatū for the pöwhiri to support and welcome Superintendent Fraser into the new role.
“Scott’s inclusive leadership style will further strengthen relationships within the Central District communities with a focus on our strategic priorities and partnerships,” said Assistant Commissioner Venables.
Superintendent Fraser has spent upwards of 19 years working in rural and provincial communities and describes them as his ‘happy place’.
“I am passionate about Central District - it’s everything about it, the people, the environment, the geography.”
Superintendent Fraser told the gathering he will be focused on the wellbeing of his staff and the people in the Central District community.
“I am a strong believer in caring for our people - the better we care for our police staff, the better we can care for our communities.
“We want police to be the easiest people to work with. If we are easy to work with, others will want to work with us and together we can achieve great things – that’s my philosophy.”
Superintendent Fraser thanked the district commanders that had come before him and acknowledged the amazing work Assistant Commissioner de Wattignar had done leading and working with the central communities.
Superintendent Fraser has dedicated 28 years of service to New Zealand Police. In this time, he has held a variety of roles including frontline, CIB and AOS. He was also deployed to the Solomon Islands before being promoted to Inspector in 2008. He has spent the past five years in the General Manager Training role, based at the Royal New Zealand Police College. During this time, he has undertaken three Acting Assistant Commissioner roles, including leading the Police Response to COVID-19.