Mr. Tangata Vainerere

Professional Experience

  • Prior to his appointment to the position of Clerk of Parliament on 16 November 2018, Tangata was the Executive Director of the Pacific Legislatures for Population and Governance (PLPG) based in the Parliament Precinct at Nikao, Rarotonga, Cook Islands.
  • In that role, Tangata had the distinction of having provided technical advice to Speakers, Clerks, and Staff of Pacific Parliaments and also to the Speaker, members and staff of the Parliament of the Cook Islands on parliamentary law and procedures, good governance and leadership, and population and development advocacy for members of Parliament.
  • As Clerk of Committees for the Cook Islands Parliament in the past 4 years, Tangata was responsible for facilitating the work of the Purse Seining Petition Select Committee, the Te Mato Vai Petition Select Committee, the Family Law Bill Select Committee, the Crimes Bill Select Committee including the development and production of all reports of these Committees for tabling in Parliament during the 48th Session of Parliament.
  • He also served successfully as the Secretariat for Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee and was responsible for facilitating the PAC investigations, consultations, hearings and the development of 7 PAC Reports tabled in Parliament during the 48th Session of Parliament.


  • Clerk, Parliament of the Cook Islands, 15 November 2018 to present;
  • Acting Clerk, Parliament of the Cook Islands, 5 October 2018 to 15 November 2018;
  • Executive Director, Pacific Legislatures for Population and Governance, 2014-October 2018;
  • Coordinator/Head of PLPG Secretariat, Pacific Legislatures for Population and Governance, 2010-2013;
  • Coordinator/Head of Joint Secretariat, Pacific Parliamentary Assembly on Population and Development and Forum of Presiding Officers and Clerks, 2008-2009;
  • Coordinator, Pacific Parliamentary Assembly on Population and Development, 2007-2008;
  • Head of the Pacific Youth Bureau and Youth Development Adviser for the Secretariat of the Pacific Community, 1998-2007;
  • Acting Women’s Development Adviser and Head of the SPC Pacific Women’s Bureau, 2000;
  • Regional Director of the Commonwealth Youth Programme, South Pacific Centre, 1994-1998;
  • Director of Administration for the Cook Islands Ministry of Education, 1993-1994;
  • Director of Community Development for the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Cook Islands, 1986-1989;
  • Youth Development Officer with the Department of Internal Affairs, Rarotonga, 1981-1986;
  • Primary School Teacher at Nikao Primary School, Rarotonga, 1980;
  • Teacher Trainee, Cook Islands Teachers College, Rarotonga, 1977-1979.


  • Bachelor of Arts Degree in Public Administration from RMIT University in Victoria, Australia (1989-1992);
  • Postgraduate studies towards a Master of Arts Degree in Public Sector Leadership – Leadership and Business Acumen & Contemporary Policy Science (Griffith University in Queensland, Australia – 2007);
  • Trained Teachers Diploma (Cook Islands Teachers College – 1980);
  • Commonwealth Diploma in Youth and Development (Commonwealth Youth Programme, Fiji – 1982);
  • Certificate in Development Administration (International Training Institute, Sydney – 1986);
  • Certificate IV – Workplace Training and Assessment (Australian Institute of Technology, Queensland – 2004);
  • Certificate in Legislative Drafting for Democratic Social Change (Boston University School of Law, Massachusetts – 2005);
  • Certificate of Completion in Global Health – Monitoring & Evaluation Fundamentals (USAID/Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health – 2006);
  • Political Advisers’ Course Certificate (University of Sydney Graduate School of Government and Australian Labor Party International Projects, Sydney, Australia, 2009).