Loretta is a public policy professional with over 13 years in a range policy and regulatory roles in the New Zealand public service and is currently with the Policy and Trade Branch at the Ministry for Primary Industries in Wellington. Prior to that, she worked at the Auckland Policy Office of HNZC. Her mum was a teacher who instilled in her a love of learning and a passion for education.
Loretta believes education is the equaliser, but only if we have diverse, inclusive and enabling environments where young people are given the opportunity to realise their fullest potential, and thrive. As the recipient of several scholarships while at University, Loretta knows first hand the value and importance of having the financial and mentoring support required, to succeed and to pay it forward for the next generations. She has been mentoring diverse students and young professionals since her high school days at Papakura High School.
She is a Graduate Scholar of the University of Auckland and has a Masters of Arts in Geography with first class honours from the School of Geography and Environmental Science. She also has a Bachelors in Political Science and Geography. While at University, Loretta worked as a clerk, degree level tutor / student advisor and ambassador.
In 2008, Loretta was one of 15 Samoan scholars worldwide to provide commentary on the academic writings of the Head of State of Samoa, specifically on the topic of “Leadership and cultural competence”. Her commentary is included in the Head of State's book titled: "Su’esu’e Manogi: In search for fragrance – Tui Atua Tupua Tamasese Ta’isi and the Samoan Indigenous Reference," published in 2008.