Pippa has set the bar high. Since receiving the prestigious Minister’s Excellence Award when she graduated as a Corrections Officer six years ago, she’s worked her way up the ranks to Deputy Prison Director at Arohata Prison.
While this is an outstanding achievement, it’s not what sets her apart.
Pippa is one of a small team of prison negotiators. This means in the unlikely event of a crisis, Pippa’s specifically trained to safely defuse the situation.
“Communication is important in order to clarify a situation, but it’s not all about talking. Actively listening is the best way to resolve these kinds of situations,” says Pippa.
She believes coming from a large family helped her to develop a cool head and the ability to think strategically. She uses every available opportunity to hone her skills, which she says is useful being a mum of three.
“Fortunately, it’s very rare for my services to be called upon. However, I’m constantly training to ensure I’m ahead of the game.”
“Resilience is so important. I have learnt failure is not a mistake if you take time to learn. The mistake is not to learn from failure.
“My favourite whakatauki is Whāia te mātauranga, which simply means ‘seek the knowledge’. I believe that as a mother, daughter, sister, aunt, sportswomen, corrections officer, negotiator, mentor and coach that with good discipline you can be many things in life.”
Despite all her achievements and having a pretty unique set of skills, Pippa remains very humble.
“I don’t measure the big stuff. If I go home and everyone is safe, those are the best days for me.”
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