Solid as a rock. That’s how Superintendent Jill Rogers describes new Counties Manukau East Area Commander Inspector Scott Gemmell.
Scott was formally welcomed into the district with a pōwhiri at Te Kura Māori o Nga Tapuwae in Māngere on Monday (14 June).
“Scott brings huge operational and managerial experience with him,” says District Commander Jill. “I couldn’t be more pleased to welcome him into the Counties Manukau family.”
After studying law at Auckland University and gaining a masters degree, Scott (Ngapuhi) joined Police in 2002, starting his career in general duties in Counties Manukau before joining the Criminal Investigation Branch (CIB).
He left Counties to join the Special Tactics Group (STG), where he worked for nine years.
“I've been the fortunate recipient of extensive training during my time in Police, significantly within the STG," he says. "I'm extremely grateful for this.
"I feel I can offer much of this back in terms of mindset through understanding situations and gathering as much information as possible before making decisions, and doing all this in exigent circumstances.”
Scott has been a member of the Armed Offenders Squad (AOS) since 2007 and a commander since 2018, a role he still holds.
Leaving STG to take up the role of Māori Responsiveness Manager in Auckland City, Scott - a Te Reo Māori speaker - relished the opportunity to work alongside the Taumata Advisory Board, Ngāti Whātua Ōrakei, the Pacific and Ethnic Advisory Boards and local community marae.
He welcomes the insight that diverse leadership has given him, and the ability to meld varied opinions into cohesive plans that align with Police's strategic direction. He says his time in MPES was the most intensive leadership training environment.
Scott absolutely and unequivocally values the relationships he has in te ao Māori and says Ngāti Whātua Ōrakei will always hold a special place for him.
Scott leaves Auckland City District (ACD) as the Central Area Prevention Manager. His departure is felt deeply by his colleagues over the border.
“I feel sad but excited," says Central Area Commander Inspector Gary Davey. "I feel I have lost a colleague, but I’ve gained a great friend.”
Scott says he is grateful to the leadership and mentorship he received from Gary and Auckland District Commander Superintendent Karyn Malthus. Being a member of the ACD leadership team has been a privilege, he says, and he feels these relationships transcend work and have become friendships .
Scott takes over from Inspector Wendy Spiller in his new role.
“Wendy leaves behind a huge legacy and a tight ship. I have some big shoes to fill as she has done an incredible job in this role for the past seven years.”
On his own leadership style, Scott says: “I lead a culture where people feel valued and included, where diversity and innovation are encouraged and staff are open-minded and included.
"I really can’t wait to get to know my new colleagues and to truly understand the role and make it work within who I am."
Scott and his wife Grace have five children - Charles, Mahuta, Rauhuia, Hemana and Toni.
Out of work, Scott can more than likely be found at Te Kura Māori o Nga Tapuwae, supporting kura-a-iwi pursuits and vision, the kaiako (teachers) and tumuaki (principal) in his role as board chair.
Alternatively he can be found on the touch, netball and rugby sidelines, on the side of a swimming pool or in the crowds at a kapa haka festival.
“My essence of being revolves around my family and the pursuits and developments of our children,” he says.