National executive members 2021
Lia de Vocht
Diti Hill-Denee has a long association with OMEP Aoteraoa NZ: in July 1995 she was a founding member and the first treasurer for the Auckland Chapter (until 2002). Teaching, research, an exchange project in the USA (1998-2001) and family commitments prevented further involvement until 2004, when she took on the president’s role for the Auckland Chapter until the end of 2006. She continued to be a chapter committee member until 2014 when she took over the role of National President until 2017. She took on the role of president once more in 2019, and is currently immediate past president and liaison person on the National Executive committee for the Auckland Chapter.
Diti has worked in the early childhood education sector for over forty years as parent, teacher and teacher educator, starting out with her own four children at Playcentre over 20 years. She retired as Senior Lecturer in the Faculty of Education and Social Work at the University of Auckland in 2014, after 23 years of helping to graduate early childhood teachers via degree and graduate diploma programmes. She continues to be associated with the University of Auckland as an Honorary Research Fellow. Diti also continues to monitor the early childhood degree and graduate diploma programmes of three leading tertiary providers, for the NZ Qualifications Authority.
Diti has always been passionate about inspiring early childhood teachers to continually explore and debate the nature of the learning-teaching process and to consider the political and ethical aspects of their practice. From this perspective she has been very active in the Reggio Emilia Aotearoa NZ (REANZ) organisation. She is an original trustee of REANZ and has facilitated professional learning and development opportunities for teachers on critical aspects of pedagogy and practice for the past 20 years.
Diti ensures she makes time for her family, especially her 9 grandchildren, and enjoys working in the garden, fishing and swimming. She has always been committed to conservation and environmental issues and, to this end, is a keen member of Forest and Bird, the local Whangateau Harbourcare Group and the plant nursery team at the Tawharanui Open Sanctuary (TOSSI).