DScene exposes museum director’s salary

“Council was not aware of it. It was certainly a surprise to many people who had heard the figures.”

### DScene 18.1.12 (page 3)
Council in the dark over Paul
By Wilma McCorkindale
Dunedin City Council should have been told what the director of the ratepayer-funded Otago Museum is earning, deputy community development chairman Cr Paul Hudson believes. Hudson acknowledged D Scene’s persistance on making the information public: “And the answer has been very revealing.” […] Figures showed Paul earned $310,793 last year — higher than the highest-paid staff member at the national museum of New Zealand, Te Papa.
{continues} #bookmark

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Posted by Elizabeth Kerr


Filed under DCC, Economics, Media, People, Politics

144 responses to “DScene exposes museum director’s salary

  1. So who should be sacked for the incompetence leading up to a salary like this being paid?

    Dunedin council at its best? Dunedin council at its best!!! The dumb ratepayers will pick the bill up, no worries boys, wink wink.

  2. Anonymous

    I was wondering how Shimrath was getting on with his new cafe reorganisation? At the time then cafe owner Jill Guy was returning a revenue to the Otago Museum of $80K p.a. before she was practically thrown out by the man. All I’ve found on the ODT site is the below bit of fluff on how it is making several times more in profit (no figures included) which would suggest it is now making $240K p.a? Wow! That must be some wicked fruit cake. Pity the reporter didn’t pick up on that change though. It’s a hell of a story eh? So yeah, and how about the conference centres? He was pretty keen on that too. And we all know if you want to spend millions of public money in Dunedin, you call it a conference centre and head over to Dunedin City Council for a hand-out. Oh, wasn’t there some issues with intimidation of staff? Probably all sorted over a slice or two of that fruit cake. Or maybe a few public funded marketing dollars dropped in the Allied Press bucket. Works for the DCC.


    • Elizabeth

      Shimrath does have to explain to the board how Otago Museum is now (cough) conserving its major collections. This will take some real explaining, in light of his car hire budget and salary.

  3. Here’s an idea.
    Salary cap.

    We over pay way to many people way too much around this town just so they can nip home and mow lawns. It’s ludicrous! Why do we pay such good money? Do we get good value? No way in hell. The higher the salary the more chance of coming up with or backing a hair-brained idea.

    Oh, and as part of councillors’ paycheck they should be expected to attend X amount of committee meetings. NOT be paid extra for going to them.

    Just run Shimrath off. Don’t muck around, same goes for whoever approved his salary. GONE!!

  4. Hype O'Thermia

    What was that carry-on regarding one particular lady, Margaret someone, the board member who lost the election – supplanted by a younger woman – but then came back by appointment. I forget the details but thought it was …ahem, unusual… at the time.

  5. Hype O'Thermia

    That’s the story! Thanks. Very good friend to the director, I heard.

  6. Elizabeth

    The Sun has finally pitched on Shimrath Paul’s salary (again), with a little prod from D Scene’s erstwhile use of the LGOIMA. The new twist is Cr Kate Wilson has chosen to act as chief apologist for Mr Paul and the Otago Museum board’s doings that promote the director’s inexplicably expensive salary package. She does herself no favours supporting largesse at the ratepayers’ expense. Mr Paul is not universally respected in the museum sector, that much has been clear for a very long time. The Otago Museum board has (historically) erred in its governance for dismissing a bicycle. That’s not all.

  7. amanda Kennedy

    It’s the usual story, those in authority are not going to challenge anyone’s high pay packages in case people start to make the logical leap and start to wonder why we are paying our local politicians so much to run our city into the ground; it would be too close for comfort.

  8. Peter

    Silly comment by Kate Wilson. It shows where she is really at with this unwise, extravagant spending on a CEO’s salary – an extraordinary wage that comes from the public purse. How can we expect her to curtail council debt, in the forthcoming LTCCP, with an attitude like that?
    Paul is there to do a job like anyone else employed at the museum. Any success the museum may have achieved is not his alone. He is more than adequately rewarded – from a long time back. The additional financial rewards are nothing more than a lot of extra thick icing on the already bloated cake.

  9. Hype O'Thermia

    Getting information out regarding the excellence or otherwise of any-(top level)-one is difficult. Ask the people still working there and no matter how dissatisfied they are, no matter how much light they could shine on the deficiencies of management, the reason they are still there is that for one reason or another they haven’t found another job. Ask the people who have left and their forthright reports of why they couldn’t wait to get away are dismissed by the boss and his supporters: they are the biased words of dissatisfied ex-employees. Not uncommonly there is a hint that they are EX- because THEY weren’t satisfactory. This is especially true when they went to different occupations instead of the ones they were trained for, because they were so miserable in the organisation they left that they couldn’t wait for an opening in their own field to come along.
    Funnily enough I have some kind of illusion that this is not unlike what happened a while back when there was a bit of publicity about the museum not being Dunedin’s happiest workplace.

  10. Peter

    I guess the mark of a truly respected leader is one where few, or any, ex employees bad mouth him/her, once they are safe to do so.
    From recent history at the museum Shimrath Paul seems to have attracted a fair amount of criticism – way beyond one or two disgruntled employees who may not be happy with anything in their workplace and are always likely to carp on about the boss.

    • Elizabeth

      Well Peter, I personally experienced the director’s uncouth rudeness, lack of respect, and bullying countenance a few years ago – all directed at me in a sideways whisper during a strategic meeting, where he had nothing to lose and everything to gain, between himself, his business manager, Owaka Museum committee (as it was prior to the design and construction of their community museum), and we design consultants. He whispered a sweet nothing in my ear that explained exactly the sort of man he is; he didn’t have the guts to say it out loud. He was however preceded by his reputation. Since then of course he has been vile to a succession of professional colleagues from various sectors, and a greater number of his staff. Being “successful” (for the museum), it turns out, doesn’t ensure he keeps ‘it’ buttoned.

  11. Peter

    Elizabeth. You are in good company from what I gather. A charmer he is not. You can forgive a charmer his/her weaknesses – to a point – but unpleasant bosses never earn real respect. Their employees just wait for the day they are finally gone…and celebrate.
    Paul should also be beware of fawning brown noses, who will swap sides and dump him at the opportune moment when his time is up.
    It will be nice when we hear that Otago Museum is a truly happy place to work in.
    I wonder how they do their staff evaluations there.

  12. Anonymous

    Otago Daily Times ~ there’s nothing wrong with Dunedin.

  13. Peter

    It does kind of look like the ODT has jumped to Paul’s defence without revisiting the problems that have surfaced there the last number of years. As the saying goes, ‘where there’s smoke there’s fire’. Something’s up at the OM.
    I may add the Deputy Chair of the Museum Board is none other than Malcolm Farry. Explains a lot.

  14. Anonymous

    In November the reporter wrote “Recent figures show income several times the value of the former cafe lease income.” That lease was $80K p.a. which would lead the reader to believe the museum made $240K? Just three months later it is “Officials said the shop and cafe posted a combined profit of more than $140,000.” What is up with that?

      • Elizabeth

        Remember when Rodney Wilson’s report came out on Dunedin’s museums in 2008? The idea to merge the three institutions was floating and Shimrath Paul was hovering to ‘head’ the lot, potentially… (there was also talk of a maritime museum at the harbourside!). This, of course, went down like a lead balloon with the staff at Dunedin Public Art Gallery and Otago Settlers Museum. The last thing they wanted was Paul taking over their benign institutions, bringing about a climate of fear and loathing, turning the gallery culture into a used car lot lacking museological knowledge, aesthetic appreciation, academic research, and curatorial distinction. The frighteners were on – and, joy-oh-joy, former GM Graeme Hall was prowling round in the mix making overtures. It seems, happy days are here again.

        [We must now add a lack of best practice collections management and conservation care to the ‘woe’ equation, so long as the leased Audi is spit and polished.]

        ### D Scene 25.1.12
        Museum governance review on the agenda (page 4)
        By Wilma McCorkindale
        Councillors are likely to dust off a comprehensive report into local museums by museum expert and former Auckland War Memorial Museum director Rodney Wilson. Dunedin City Council insiders say that, with museum finances on the Dunedin City Council (DCC) planning round agenda, it was likely options for future governance of Dunedin’s three main collection institutions would be discussed in the next few weeks.
        {continues} #bookmark

  15. James

    One can only imagine the kind of salary that the head of the combined institutions would require….

  16. Hype O'Thermia

    Don’t worry your dear head about it, James. Athol would make sure that it was made available……….

  17. Hype O'Thermia

    If you’ve been reading the Sun please stop shaking your head in disbelief, it makes your teeth rattle. Let me guess – you’ve been reading the little piece at the end of the editorial and you’re boggled at the effluential nasal brownage, right?

    • Elizabeth

      ### ODT Online Wed, 25 Jan 2012
      Editorial: And another thing
      A bouquet to the Otago Museum, its chief executive and staff, for another excellent performance in what has been a difficult trading year. Many museums allow to settle about them the fusty and dusty aura of the past. Not so the Otago Museum which, under the guidance of CEO Shimrath Paul, has managed to remain a vital, lively and contemporary component in the province’s cultural life. Long may its inventiveness and its successes continue. Link

      The Sun’s 150th anniversary celebrations include an exhibition of their photographers’ work, now showing at Otago Museum.

  18. Anonymous

    D Scene, Rewind, 25.1.12
    The Otago Daily Times informs its readers Otago Museum director Shimrath Paul earns more than $310,000 annually. It took D Scene two years and an appeal to the Ombudsman to find that information out. The ODT merely had to pick up a copy of the December 21 copy of D Scene.

  19. Mike

    This story lends a whole new meaning to the phrase ‘culture vulture’.

    But seriously, if people like Paul want big incomes they should go work in the private sector for a big company, not fleece low-income ratepayers.

    As Rodger Duff, a former (well-respected) director of the Canterbury Museum, pointed out – working in museums is a privilege and people who work in them should expect to be modesty paid for working at something they love doing.

    By the way, what are this guy’s qualifications? If he’s got anything less than a PhD, there’s plenty of people out there who could be doing his job instead of him.

    {Last year the media noted there was mis-accounting of his credentials in Board reports going back a number of years – since corrected. -Eds}

  20. Richard

    Mike: for a decade the Museum’s annual reports claimed that he had a BSc Honours. He didn’t. It was claimed to be a clerical error. Allegedly he has a BSc.

    Given the revelations about his salary, I’m interested in hearing what the other senior managers get. I’m sure he is looking after his flunkies while the majority of front-line and technical staff are paid below the going rate.

  21. Richard

    And I forgot to add that Mr Paul has an MBA from Otago. None of the senior team there have any museum qualifications. After all, it’s a business, not just a museum.

  22. Hype O'Thermia

    An MBA is like a boob job, it’ll take you places and impress the kind of people who are impressed by, well, get my drift? – but it won’t make you any more worthy of oxygen.

  23. wonderland

    I loved the bit about him (Paul) being widely respected in the museum sector. I can assure you he is not. In fact he is considered little more than a joke in the sector, and an embarassment actually. Does not reflect at all well on Dunedin that the farce that is OM is allowed to continue without some sort of intervention. Hopefully that intervention will come soon now that DCC seems to be on the case.

  24. Mike

    Just for the record the Mike posting above is not the same Mike who occasionally posts here (nothing nefarious it’s a common name) – stk

  25. Richard

    wonderland: the evidence would suggest that contempt might be a better description for how OM in general and Mr Paul in particular are perceived in the museum world. OM is very much on the outer.

    I couldn’t believe my ears hearing Kate Wilson defend him on National Radio’s Morning Report this morning! Apparently DScene’s Wilma McCorkindale (the journo who did all the work finding out his salary in the first place!) is being interviewed tomorrow (Thursday 26th) morning on the same programme. Listen for the podcast!

    Trouble is that even if Mr Paul goes, the rest of the management team might remain. Some are allegedly worse than he is – though perhaps not paid as much for being unpleasant to everyone.

    • Elizabeth

      ### rnz.co.nz Wed 25 January 2012 at 08:15
      Morning Report with Jane Patterson and Simon Mercep
      Dunedin councillor questions museum funding
      Revelations that Otago Museum’s Chief Executive is paid over 310 thousand dollars, is prompting calls for Dunedin City Council to have greater say in how it spends its own money. (4′04″)
      Audio | Download: Ogg Vorbis MP3 | Embed


      Great embarrassment! Cr Wilson, stop now. You’re out of your depth.

      ### rnz.co.nz Wed 25 January 2012 at 08:20
      Morning Report with Jane Patterson and Simon Mercep
      Museum Trustboard defends CEO’s salary package
      The acting chairwoman of the new Otago Museum Trust Board Kate Wilson joins us. (4′34″)
      Audio | Download: Ogg Vorbis MP3 | Embed

  26. Hype O'Thermia

    Shim Paul is worth every cent. If it weren’t for him and through him, the museum in its current fabulosity, there would be nothing for people to do in the periods between events … all those people attracted to Dunedin for the sports and rock shows and dressage and Ice Follies and the Welsh Synchronised Macrame Exponents in the Grand Fubar.

    • Elizabeth

      Like we always said the future is in the stadium, so slash and burn all Dunedin cultural institutions, lump their management together – their history, distinctiveness and integrity don’t matter a whit. If you have the likes of Greater Dunedin and the rugger-boy councillors making cardboard cutout representations of our cultural resource, why keep collections of real artefacts? As Cull would say, “hock them off”, repay the banks! Only 800 million dollars to clear.

  27. wonderland

    I just saw the new Facebook page and then this link to a document with staff exit surveys. Somebody needs to send that to the ODT, it is quite simply amazing.


    {ODT regularly visit What if? Dunedin… Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/I-survived-the-Otago-Museum/276337832433720?sk=wall -Eds}

    Note 31.1.12
    Link to the Ex-staff Survey has been disabled at Facebook – see https://dunedinstadium.wordpress.com/2012/01/18/d-scene-exposes-museum-directors-salary/#comment-21229 -Eds.

    or go to Google docs

  28. Abi

    I sent the entire survey to the ODT last year – they did NOTHING with it.

    John Gibb is Clare’s monkey puppet. She pulls the strings. All John does is produces puff pieces on how great the Museum is for her. John and the ODT have no journalistic credibility with regards to the Museum AT ALL.

  29. There is some shocking stuff there. When you start reading things like “As far as I know Shim does not own the museum, so why does he seemingly answer to nobody? The simple truth is shims greed has lead him to create a workplace which actively works to oppress it’s staff. Staff have no where to go for help and the best ones end up leaving. This operation has lead to the most toxic culture I have ever experiences. The solution is not so simple as removing shim, the entire management team and management plan needs to be overhauled. It’s sick.” —you start saying time for some mass sackings. Why are council sitting around with their thumbs up their arses? I do not believe they don’t know what’s going on.

    Hang your heads in shame council and whoever is the clown running the shop. This is yet another disgrace you bring to the rest of Dunners. Arseholes.

  30. Richard

    I hope that people have noticed in the ex-staff survey that Clare Wilson comes in for as much criticism as Shimrath Paul. Nastiness supports nastiness. That’s why the whole management team has to go.

    It is an absolute disgrace that this has not been sorted out years ago; that Shimrath Paul is still there is an indictment on a lot of people in Dunedin and Otago. So many good people have left that museum, scarred and battered.

    The ODT is definitely in the Museum’s pocket: all they do is print Museum press releases. Wilma and DScene seem to be the only independent media agencies in this town!

    Perhaps, at last, there is momentum building up that something will get done.

  31. smith

    Clare Wilson is the evil worker in all of this. Shim is the figurehead, sizing up retirement. Everybody would be more suprised to find out what she earned, keeping in mind she is not the director and the average wage for employees at Otago Museum is 34k (meaning plenty of staff are paid less than that).

  32. wonderland

    What about TV? Imagine a one hour investigative report on Sunday, I reckon they would be keen.

    Come to think of it, how about an HBO mini series on Soho? Oh right, too unbelievable…

  33. Hype O'Thermia

    I wonder if Wilma is asking questions about Clare’s salary.

  34. Russell Garbutt

    Basically you can forget mainstream TV doing anything south of Auckland. They are no longer interested. Truly investigative journalism disappeared some years ago with politicians ensuring that the costs of carrying out work of this type vanished. Like it or not, the only people really doing work in this area are Wishart and Hagar and from my reading their work is variable and not easy to digest. The only other writer that put together something which was compelling was the guy Hunter on the Sounds murder case. But congrats to Wilma for sticking with the story and getting it out, and yet another brickbat for the ODT for failing to follow up stories delivered on a plate to them.

  35. FormermuseumSlave

    I couldn’t count on my hands the number of times I saw Julian Smith sitting in the Museum Cafe with Clare Wilson, perhaps chatting about advertising and print revenue….

  36. Anonymous

    Otago Museum Ex-staff Survey

    Click to access 8d2b3649d1.pdf

    Once again the ODT is served up a newspaper-selling news tip on a silver platter. Once again it does nothing. This is ground-breaking material providing further evidence of horrific management at the Otago Museum. Even an in brief noting the publlishing of the survey would enable it readers to become better informed.

    It seems the (public-funded) marketing budgets from Otago Museum and Dunedin City Council trump journalism again. Or its reporters are too busy investigating why seagulls shit on cars.

    Hopefully the D Scene will continue raising awareness about Otago Museum. Congratulations to Wilma McCorkindale on making it harder for Shimrath and his DCC allies to deny the situation.

  37. Calvin Oaten

    Interesting to note Paul Hudson’s concern about the museum CEO’s salary, when he has just been relieved of his directorships of the DCHL group, which gave him in excess of $120,000 per annum for probably about the equivalent of one month’s work. Pigs with snouts in troughs seldom lift their heads high enough to observe who are standing beside them.

  38. amanda kennedy

    Hudson is no ninny. He will sing what ever song he can to get re elected, so long as we all forget he is a Rugby lap dog.

  39. Hype O'Thermia

    http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/news/6304802/Museum-forced-to-reveal-salary . Stuff, by the way, credits “An investigation by The Southland Times Dunedin bureau” for uncovering the story.
    “Cr Hudson was concerned the DCC was not made aware of the size of the package. Three DCC councillors are members of the Otago Museum Trust Board but under legislation governing the museum are not required to report back to Council. ” They’re not required NOT to mention where the money went though. An interesting choice. Who are they working for, Crs Kate Wilson, Syd Brown and Colin Weatherall?
    And what of “Mr Crombie, who is a city council appointee…” http://www.odt.co.nz/news/dunedin/147924/new-leadership-and-fresh-faces-museum-board
    As a DCC appointee, does he have any responsibilities toward the DCC or is all contact required to be severed after appointment?

    {Wilma McCorkindale who broke the story originally works for D Scene and, via Fairfax, the Southland Times. Wilma tells us there are more stories to come. -Eds}

  40. Anonymous

    I’m sure that the Department of Labour would be very interested in following up any allegation made with regard to the exit survey comments.

    • Elizabeth

      I put the same question yesterday. I hear people went to the Department as well as PSA, with no result. Which I find extraordinary. Can only think the staff/ex-staff have not been truly organised or maybe didn’t seek appropriate legal representation and advice. It’s a simple matter, the staff have legal rights, and a guaranteed win. Could probably bypass mediation and go straight to tribunal on this one.

  41. Having discussed this with ex-employees over the last few years it would seem they are cowed into submission, driven into the wall and then just plain relieved to have broken free in the end. This is probably the effect on many of the staff. But it’s coming unstuck now. That link published on the 26th has been widely distributed (well beyond the control of the ODT). Many will still be angry about their treatment and won’t be threatened by Shamrith and his cohorts this time around. The use of “sociopaths” in the document will have probably rung true for many.

  42. wonderland

    Hmm, I have a funny feeling the days of Mr Paul and his sidekick Ms Wilson may well be numbered. What goes around and all that.

    Not sure I would want to be either of them looking for work in this country after they hand their keys to OM (and the Audi) in…

    But I guess they will still have each other.

  43. Anonymous

    I still can’t figure why this horrific behaviour at Otago Museum continues to be swept back under the carpet? Anyway while reading the broad public disapproval of the situation, found this picture of Shimrath hanging with National carbon copy Michael Woodhouse at http://www.flickr.com/photos/nznationalparty/4474518517/. For some reason his position on the stadium and Hillside came to mind at the same time.

  44. Hype O'Thermia

    Michael Woodhouse at Mercy Hospital appeared to be a very able chap doing a good job for the hospital. Alas he has directed his drive and smarts as a politician into being a politician… as opposed to being someone with the power to improve other people’s circumstances, who energetically pursues that aim. He should go far, as a politician. And when I say “should” I am expressing an earnest wish, likewise by “far” I mean non-metaphorical distance: Perth, Reykjavik, anywhere other than Wellington. Paid by the people – work FOR the people. That would be fair, wouldn’t it?

    • Elizabeth

      Yeah, Woodlouse has turned into a slimy brat. One that has difficulty recognising the poverty gap, according to statements he made last year (before the general election) to some of his Dunedin constituents at a National Party soiree.

  45. Hype O'Thermia

    “Council was not aware” of Shimrath Paul’s salary despite having 3 councillors on the board. Should we the public make sure that information is spoon-fed to them, by emailing links to relevant information to each and every one of them? Examples I can think of include “Affidavit of Philip James Harland In Opposition To Appeal, sworn 7 August 2009” and link http://www.facebook.com/pages/I-survived-the-Otago-Museum/276337832433720?sk=wall (I survived the Otago Museum says “Newspaper articles of Shims fraud charges have been uploaded”) and the comments from ex-staff members who filled out an anonymous survey – http://freepdfhosting.com/8d2b3649d1.pdf . The “chronically uninformable” still won’t read them but they will not be able to claim they were not told, there will be a public record – our “Sent mail” folders – that they were.

    Note 31.1.12
    Link to the Ex-staff Survey has been disabled at Facebook – see https://dunedinstadium.wordpress.com/2012/01/18/d-scene-exposes-museum-directors-salary/#comment-21229 -Eds.

    or go to Google docs

  46. I can hear them now…

    “I never got that email, it must have gone to my spam folder” X12

  47. Hype O'Thermia

    “What rules have you set in your spam filter? What are you doing to alter them now that you are aware that important information is not reaching you?” Yes councillor, you ARE responsible, now tighten your truss and get to work!

  48. Russell Garbutt

    But there are very few reasons to not receive a letter. One sent to the Secretary of the Board enclosing any relevant information, URL links, printouts of interesting webpages, and a formal request that the content be passed to every Board member is a good start. There are some very useful links that could be included that give excellent guides to the processes of employee termination as an example. A suggestion is to also include a request for a receipt of all sent material. All correspondence addressed to the Board must appear in all Board papers.

    How long has this particular situation been going on? What evidence is there to show that the current or past Boards of the Museum have failed to deal with formal complaints or requests to investigate any issues?

    • Elizabeth

      Russell, I note your rhetoricals, but years and years and years — under the blind eye of Margaret Collins, Board Chair (recently ousted from that position, thanks to a CDC manoeuvre).

  49. Russell Garbutt

    Ah, I was hoping that my rhetoricals were showing – seems from the outside that when there is a very opinionated CEO and a Board that doesn’t have strong leadership, then a situation can develop that is not acceptable. It will take a very strong and determined Board to face up to reality and change things. I recall with some clarity a situation in the dying days of TVNZ whereby an employee was firmly convinced that he was way better than sliced bread and when it was conveyed to him that in fact all of his clients thought him an unreliable provider of services that the hardest part was convincing him that his own views of himself were not sustainable. When a perpetrator or poor performer starts to believe in their own invincibility, it takes a very strong, possibly ugly, confrontation to sort things out.

    • Elizabeth

      Rhetoricals aside, Russell, your advice offered is very good and those affected institutionally should strongly attempt to heed it. Committee and board records of formal correspondence are a dynamite tool.

  50. wonderland

    I notice that the link to the staff exit interviews has been disabled today. Perhaps someone could upload it again to the Facebook page?

    {The trick is to save documents provided by link, to as many computers as possible. We just happen to have a PDF copy…we don’t use Facebook! -Eds}

    https://dunedinstadium.files.wordpress.com/2012/01/otago-museum-ex-staff-survey-comment-supplement-as-at-26-1-12.pdf (83 KB)

  51. Anonymous

    Interesting to note The Press has picked up on the story and is going to reference the Facebook page. I doubt the existance of the page would be a surprise (something made funnier by the ODT recently) to the museum’s management but the leap from D Scene, to its parent newspaper and subsequently Stuff will make it harder to keep sweeping back under the carpet.

    {Link: http://www.stuff.co.nz/southland-times/news/6304802/Museum-forced-to-reveal-salary -Eds}

  52. Richard

    Russell Garbutt: I’ve just been looking at the Charities Commission website to see who is on the Museum Trust Board (see http://www.register.charities.govt.nz/CharitiesRegister/CharitySummary.aspx?id=f68b27c1-e24b-dd11-84f2-0015c5f3da29). The Secretary of the OM Trust Board is Shimrath Paul. Perhaps that explains one or two things?

    • Elizabeth

      It was not the first time claims of bullying have emerged: former staff in 2009 described an “unhealthy management culture”, “intimidating behaviour by senior managers” and “disrespect and bullying”.

      ### ODT Online Wed, 1 Feb 2012
      Museum rejects latest grievance allegations
      By Chris Morris
      Claims of “bullying” have been levelled at Otago Museum managers, a group of disgruntled ex-staff having banded together to lobby for change. A former staff member has created a Facebook page called “I survived the Otago Museum”, allowing other former staff to air grievances about the museum and its management.
      Read more

  53. Hype O'Thermia

    All those of us old enough to remember the Profumo Affair will be remembering Mandy Rice-Davies, who on being told that Lord Astor claimed that her allegations concerning himself and his house parties at ‘Cliveden’ were untrue responded: “He would, wouldn’t he”?

  54. Peter

    Oh dear, that is real paranoia to include those leading questions, if this is true. The controversy over Paul and his cronies just won’t go away.He appears to be dead meat. The Board will need to move him on if he doesn’t jump himself. How much longer can the museum put up with this embarrassingly slow, public blood letting?
    Any success the museum has is not Paul’s alone. There appears to be a lot of dedicated people there despite the human management problems and the low morale that has ensued. (The same happens in schools, with dedicated staff, that end up with commissioners because they have become ungovernable). The Board needs to ask itself whether this staff dedication will change, for the worse, with Paul’s departure. Obviously not. People love the kind of work they do there.
    Paul is expendable. He is not pivotal to the museum. Far from it as he is the source of so much agony there. The controversy won’t go away while he continues as he seems to have too many wounded enemies who are determined to bring him down. A bad, bad sign. Usually unhappy people just move on, once they leave a job.
    I understand he was not only obstructive over revealing his pay, which should not be a secret, but also his qualifications. A bad, bad look.
    The Board needs to face facts and act.

  55. Anonymous

    Interesting that Chris Morris wrote this story on Shimrath. John Gibb mostly looks after affairs coming out of Otago Museum. The last time this twist occurred was in September based on ODT search results. Allied Press has appeared unwillingly to follow the issue though but looks like it may have accepted public interest is forcing its view of newsworthiness. It is also an interesting coincidence the story appeared today after that post on the Facebook page noted The Press had been in contact and the comment above highlighted it further.

    • Elizabeth

      ### ch9.co.nz February 3, 2012 – 6:32pm
      DCC to discuss plans for former Post Office
      Next week the Dunedin City Council’s Community Development Committee is due to discuss Otago Museum’s plans for the former Dunedin north Post Office building. The Museum has been the lease holder of the building since 2010, with strict guidelines on what activities are permitted. Last September the Community Development Committee agreed to defer the building’s operational date to March this year. Link

      Report – CDC – 07/02/2012
      (PDF, 1.8 MB)
      Otago Museum: Development Plans for Former Dunedin North Post Office Building

  56. Peter

    Possible use? Maybe Shimmy could be posted elsewhere. An interactive museum display.

  57. Anonymous

    Is there a connection between Otago Museum experience and development director Clare Wilson and museum board director and city councillor Kate Wilson? Just curious. On the topic of Paul Shimrath and Clare Wilson, the Ex Staff Members Support Group has been trying for some time to get action yet must continually hit its head against a wall with reporting by the Otago Daily Times. It is good to know the D Scene continues to challenge the ‘there is no problem here’ mentality of its management.

    • Elizabeth

      ### ODT Online Tue, 7 Feb 2012
      Museum reveals post office plans
      By Chris Morris
      Plans for a $1.5 million redevelopment of the former Dunedin North Post Office have been revealed by the Otago Museum. The project would involve an interior refurbishment to create more space for conferences, functions and exhibitions, as well as a new glass foyer, courtyard and pathway outside the building. Design drawings and an outline of the project will be presented to Dunedin city councillors at the community development committee meeting today.

      The building, constructed in 1878, has a category 2 listing with the New Zealand Historic Places Trust, but the plans had won initial support from NZHPT Otago-Southland area manager Owen Graham. Ms Wilson said heritage features would either be highlighted or protected, in line with a conservation plan for the building.

      Read more + Images

      • Elizabeth

        ### D Scene 8.2.12
        PSA says museum salaries are a concern (page 2)
        By Wilma McCorkindale
        Public sector union, the PSA, says the salary of the director of Otago Museum is another on the list of controversial New Zealand CEOs salaries. “Shimrath Paul’s salary comes to light while a number of council CEOs are facing outrage over their pay increases,” PSA National secretary Brenda Pilott told D Scene. […] She noted that last year a Dunedin City Council staffing review of the ratepayer-funded Otago Museum found junior staff were underpaid. The PSA had previously said experienced museum staff were earning as little as $32,000, and most worked long hours on heavy workloads without overtime.
        {continues} #bookmark

        Register to read D Scene online at

      • Elizabeth

        ### ODT Online Wed, 8 Feb 2012
        Councillors praise design for old post office
        By Chris Morris
        The planned $1.5 million refurbishment of the former North Dunedin post office by the Otago Museum has won support from Dunedin city councillors, despite some verbal volleys aimed at the project’s design. […] The plans, detailed in the Otago Daily Times on Monday, included a refurbishment of the building’s interior for conferences, functions and exhibitions, and a new glass conservatory, courtyard and pathway.
        Read more

        • Elizabeth

          Proposed redevelopment – former Dunedin North Post Office

          I fully concur with project architect John McCoy. His design is welcome. Although, ODT readers unused to reading elevation drawings would have benefitted from 3D perspectives being supplied.

          As McCoy notes, Peter Entwisle’s recent column was written without due regard to contemporary guiding principles for adaptive re-use and heritage conservation. Further, Entwisle’s attack on the New Zealand Historic Places Trust in relation to this particular project is unwarranted and unnecessary.

          If anything, ODT should invite John McCoy to provide a regular column on architecture and the city.

          ### ODT Online Mon, 27 Feb 2012
          Opinion: Extension critique ‘muddled’
          By John McCoy
          A blinkered preservationist mindset will inevitably prevent our old buildings being adaptively used, writes Dunedin architect John McCoy. It is a pity that Peter Entwisle did not take the time to discuss the design of the extensions to the Dunedin North Post Office before writing his Artbeat column, “Converting a shoe into a kayak” (20.2.12) as he has arrived at a number of muddled interpretations.
          Read more

        • Dunedin needs another exhibition and venue hire space like a hole in the head. Didn’t we just spend $millions on the Otago Settlers Museum redevelopment (which the OSM’s director has problematically focused on Dunedin’s history and, to the side things emanating from the pet rock)!?

          ### ODT Online Sat, 9 Feb 2013
          Interactive heritage centre on course for Easter
          By Nigel Benson
          An Easter resurrection is planned for the former Dunedin North post office. The 135-year-old building is being developed into an interactive Dunedin heritage centre, which will be run by the Otago Museum and New Zealand Historic Places Trust. The $1.5 million redevelopment includes new exhibition and venue-hire space, a foyer, courtyard and toilets.
          Read more

        • ### ODT Online Sat, 18 May 2013
          Museum’s ‘old post office’ annex nearly ready
          By John Gibb
          Construction work is largely completed at the former Dunedin North post office complex, which is being redeveloped as an Otago Museum exhibition space and conference venue. Museum assets and technology manager Joel Oldridge said redevelopment work, co-ordinated by main contractor Naylor Love, was likely to be completed by about the end of this month. The complex would then be handed over to museum staff. Before that, the internal fit-out, including electrical wiring and painting, would be completed. An external fire escape would be added at the eastern side of the building, allowing emergency egress from the first floor. Glass panels would also be installed in the roof of a conservatory already built at the north side of the complex. A proposed new name for the complex – the ”Otago Museum H.D. Skinner Annex” – had been approved by the family of former long-serving museum director Dr H.D. Skinner.
          Read more

        • New director in for dose of reality – funding issues, staff-management relations, and working conditions. The shadow of Shamwrath lives on.

          ### ODT Online Thu, 23 May 2013
          Museums critical element of vibrant cities, director says
          By John Gibb
          Museums are not just ”nice to have” but are a critical part of modern, vibrant cities, Otago Museum’s new director Dr Ian Griffin believes. Yesterday was his first official day of duties at the museum, as director. Dr Griffin (47) said he would argue ”very strongly” that having cities which were ”strong culturally” were ”critical to any civilised society”.

          ”If Dunedin is serious about drawing in people for the future and creating jobs, and creating wealth for the future, a key part of that is having a strong cultural sector.”

          He wanted to build on the work already done there, and would continue to develop relationships with institutions such as the Shanghai Museum in Dunedin’s Chinese sister city, Shanghai. He was also keen for the Otago Museum to help showcase some of the leading research undertaken by University of Otago researchers, such as Prof Glenn Summerhayes, a leading archaeologist who is also a member of the museum board.
          Read more

        • ### ch9.co.nz May 24, 2013 – 7:25pm
          New director of Otago Museum already has a vision
          The new director of Otago Museum has only been in the job a couple of days, but already has a vision that involves interaction with some of this city’s scientists and researchers. He believes Museums inspire a sense of curiosity in people and that’s exactly what he wants to foster.

        • ### ODT Online Sun, 7 Jul 2013
          Work near end on old Post Office
          By Brenda Harwood – The Star
          Work is almost complete on the transformation of a historic North Dunedin landmark into an exhibition and function space for Otago Museum. Formerly the North Dunedin Post Office and the Otago Art Society rooms, the historic bluestone building at the corner of Albany St and Great King St (one way North) has undergone a $1.6 million redevelopment during the past six months. It is now called the H. D. Skinner Annexe – named after a pre-eminent former director of the Otago Museum. On the outside, the building remains essentially unchanged – apart from the addition of a glass atrium on the North side. However, the inside has been completely transformed to become modern exhibition and function spaces.
          Read more

        • ### ODT Online Thu, 11 Jul 2013
          Museum annexe set for opening
          By John Gibb
          The $1.6 million redevelopment of the former Dunedin North post office as an Otago Museum exhibition area is nearing completion, and the first display is expected to open next month. The building has been renamed the Otago Museum H.D. Skinner Annexe, in honour of the late Dr Skinner, a director of the museum from 1937 to 1957.

          Titled ”Heritage Lost and Found: Our Changing Cityscape”, the first exhibition to be displayed at the annexe was developed in partnership with the New Zealand Historic Places Trust. The display would showcase ”important aspects of Dunedin’s built heritage that have been demolished or redeveloped”.

          Unexpected hold-ups with material supply, particularly of glass, had contributed to delays in completing the project, museum staff said in a recent report. A decision by Dunedin City Council staff not to make any ”monetary contribution” from the council parks and reserves budget had ”necessitated a rework” of initial plans for landscaping. Architects McCoy and Wixon had since redesigned the landscaping, its completion being weather-dependent.
          Read more

        • ### ch9.co.nz July 11, 2013 – 7:32pm
          $1.6m redevelopment near completion
          The $1.6m redevelopment of the former North Dunedin Post Office is near completion. And while the historic building looks brand new on the inside, some of its older, original features have been preserved.

  58. How many hands on staff is there at the museum?

  59. anon

    It seems we may not have moved on from the Mikey Years. In today’s ODT story calling for cuts to DCC funding of the Otago Museum, Cr Teresa Stevenson makes a suggestion to query accountability and allocation of funding. Cr Richard Thomson takes it upon himself to knock her back with “I don’t really know what that means.”


    Now, let’s see what else is up on that front. Ah, yes, here we go. In another infamous Syd Brown story, Cr Jinty MacTavish raises concerns about extending the debt repayment to 40 years. Cr Brown and Cr Thomson tag team on this one and knock her back.


    And just to demonstrate their complete ignorance with reality, both go on to compare that debt, and by association the stadium, with Moana Pool and the Municipal Chambers.

    People are furious with Cr Brown and it won’t help Cr Thomson to be seen and heard standing on his values.

  60. Hype O'Thermia

    Conferences again eh. That shiny promise they sprinkle on claims [for funding] so they can sell them to the gullible. Fools’ gold.

  61. Calvin Oaten

    Hype, you’re right. Conferences are the ‘opium of the bureaucrats’, who seem besotted with them. Perhaps it is the thought of all those canape’s and other gastronomical treats (especially dear to ‘old Rodders’). Dunedin can host conferences at numerous hotels (private), the Edgar Centre, the Stadium, the Town Hall, the University, the Otago Settlers Museum, the Art Gallery and of course the Museum (Hutton theatre etc). All told, probably about 20 per day, every day. Never mind that the city is already in ‘hock’ for most of them (excepting the university, Govt funded) to the tune of over $270 million. So all the city needs now is another site, albeit the Museum’s. But, in the fullness of time, guess who will be funding it? Right, the poor old sucker the ratepayer. Always happens, gild the lily, underestimate the costs, overestimate the revenues (benefits) disguise the agenda by extolling the virtues of recycling an old building, and ‘bingo’ the green light. And off we go on another spending splurge. Mr Paul will be pleased, his responsibilities expand, so a salary increase will be a reasonable expectation. Win win all round I would say.

    • Elizabeth

      If the old North Dunedin post office was dedicated as an Otago Museum research centre with mandated public outreach – raising standards of excellence – there might have been something worthwhile to fund.

      But yes, instead we have the likelihood of another indeterminate multi-purpose facility (with no real business plan) to add to Shamrith’s [sic] caryard and harem that is the Museum itself, with all its magnificent, mundane and rarely viewed collections in storage, being poorly conserved and about which little is known.

  62. amanda kennedy

    Thanks for that clear information Anon. Yes, it certainly pays to keep a track of what is happening on council and who is knocking who back. In other words which councillors are concerned about the debt and which ones created it and so are more concerned about stopping any tranparency surrounding the debt they created, or in Cr Thomson’s case which councillors have just given up and decided to help Cr Hudson and his mates cover up the debt problem and hope we all forget about it for a few years so that those responisble can loot the city for all its worth and then retire nicely to Wanaka.

  63. amanda kennedy

    So councillors Weatherall, Brown and Wilson want to have their cake and eat it too? They want the benefits of being councillors (the extra funds made from being on committees the councillor salary, and the political influence) and yet they also want to not be politicians when it suits them. Wake up councillors, this is Not Possible. If we had a proper local media it would have pointed this out. If these councillors can turn a blind eye at the museums vast income inequality, then the people of Dunedin have to accept that we have on council people supposedly representing us who are indifferent to income inequality across the board. In Cr Brown and Weatherall’s case past history proves that this is so. They need to be voted out. They are part of the problem of this council.

  64. anon

    There is significant concern about accountability of the collections too, especially those in storage. Many people have asked for a stocktake of all items but the concern does not translate to action. Given the ratepayer contributes many millions to the museum for protecting and cataloging artifacts, then this should be of the highest priority and certainly an important goal. But we only get to read about Shimrath Paul and Clare Wilson spending more money on conference facilities and ignoring massive disapproval of management. Something is off at the Otago Museum.

    • Elizabeth

      {Comment copied from another thread. -Eds}

      Hype O’Thermia
      Submitted on 2012/02/15 at 9:53 am

      Re Kate Wilson, from Fbook I survived the Otago Museum
      I survived the Otago Museum: Kate Wilson defending Shim’s salary
      Museum Trustboard Defends Ceos Salary Package
      Christy Ballard: What is Kate Wilson thinking?
      Andrew Sparrow: Kate Wilson is not in a position where she is able to say anything else. What she is ‘thinking’ however is less clear. Shim doesn’t have the same leverage over her thoughts as he does over her actions.
      Audrey Ross: she doesn’t even sound like she believes what she is saying.

      She’s coming across like a good old boy these days, isn’t she…… Been drinking the water round the council table, methinks.

  65. Am I allowed to call Weatherall, Brown and Wilson out here? I reckon they’re full of shit and should come to my house for a coffee. If they can’t explain it all properly they should resign.

    ‘Cause I reckon they should have the cops on their arse for all the bullshit they talk. Why we’re mucking around has me beat. Just stick the cops on them and nail them. Or are the cops scared of something?….

    • Elizabeth

      I dare say Cr Thomson knows what it takes. And Cr Brown is trying to be fair and reasonable so his subdivision sells comfortably well.

  66. Anonymous

    Dear Cr Brown,
    Please cease and desist from using the name “Highland Park” in connection with anything Scottish.
    Highland Park Distillery

  67. Anonymous

    Woohoo! Payrises for Paul and Clare… isn’t that what they mean when they pull that old public card “It’s not a decision that’s been taken lightly”?


  68. Peter Entwisle

    Read the charter Elizabeth.

  69. Rob Hamlin

    I am with Peter Entwisle on this one. I become very irritated with the condescending and downright arrogant attitude of architects towards people who dare to criticise their brutalist additions to the landscape. One of the most common put downs to those advocating extending and rebuilding in style is the term ‘pastiche’. Pastische seems to be a term that is used by architects to descrbe anything that is not totally devoid of proportion, merit, attractiveness or reference to earlier periods. The Parthenon in Athens is a pastiche of a wooden hut, the front facade of the Pantheon is Rome is a pastiche of the Parthenon. The front facade of the Capitol in Washington is a pastiche of the Pantheon, as is the interior of its rotunda. Does this mean that all these pastiche buildings are totally without merit? Building and extending in an earlier style or a development of it is not an impossiblity. Of all the great cathedrals in England, only one, Salisbury, was built in one hit. All the rest were bult in stages, usually over several centuries. Yes, there are style differences, but there is clearly also a respect there for what has gone before, and the final output has integrity – look at York Minster – this is something that I don’t see in this proposal.

    Of course the proposed extension does have one specific advantage – compared to extending in the existing style – or a sympathetic development of it – it’s almost certainly a great deal cheaper. It’s something else too, but I’ll let you figure that one out.

    So that’s my architectural statement. You may not agree with it. However, you only have to live with it for a matter of seconds – unlike the numerous brutalist statements from the post war architectural community that litter the campus and City area. I am not a member of the secret bond of the hidden architectural light of wisdom – but I am still entitled to an opinion without being insulted – or am I?

  70. Calvin Oaten

    Rob: Probably not.

    • Elizabeth

      I’m old. I grew up in the noble tradition of corrugated iron and weatherboard claddings over timber frames for elegant farm sheds (1859 plus) and simple houses in the same materials with various lean-to additions and layers of insulation over time. Great care taken with the glazing. And treehuts. In the 1970s we moved to sympathetically detailed steel frames with the same claddings (although corrugated steel in the same profile substituted for corrugated iron). As the business client we drove the designers with our budget and our knowledge of what was and had to be. Not a Pantheon in sight. In the 1980s I went to Architecture School where I remained for ten years. Got to know the Parthenon, Pantheon and Capitol. Ultimately prefer the freshness of contemporary architecture in New Zealand, in the same old materials I’ve always loved. Not a Pantheon or Stones of Venice in sight.

      There’s a lot of bluestone un-numbered going to the dump at Christchurch – as the client Anglicans go for cardboard the tower comes down in full deconstruction / obliteration style.

      Join with engineers, architects, heritage conservationists and Christchurch residents in their plea to restore the Cathedral by signing the petition at http://www.restorechristchurchcathedral.co.nz/

  71. Anonymous

    Shimrath and Clare have plenty of hot air to spare. It just needs to be vented at the foyer instead of their staff.

  72. Anonymous

    A classic piece of blowhard journalism today with a half page photo of Shimrath Paul on page 45 and a cutsie one of everyone’s most-loved-boss Clare Wilson on page 47. So much can be said but everyone who isn’t an Oddity captive knows the reality does not fit the marketing.

    It is time for Shimrath and Clare to drive off into the sunset. Better still, do it on a bike…

  73. Elizabeth

    ### ODT Online Wed, 31 Oct 2012
    Paul payout believed to be $700,000
    By Chris Morris
    Former Otago Museum chief executive Shimrath Paul is believed to have received nearly $700,000 in various contractual entitlements and back payments when he recently left the museum. After 22 years at the museum, Mr Paul (59) took up a new job on September 17 as chief executive of a private sector centre of excellence for cancer treatment and research in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta. The Otago Museum has since advertised widely, seeking a new “director-chief executive”, and the Otago Museum Trust Board heard yesterday there had been considerable interest in the job. Applications close on November 30.
    Read more

    • Elizabeth

      ### DScene 12 Dec 2012
      Forty want museum job (page 5)
      Appointment likely soon
      By Wilma McCorkindale
      Forty people have applied for the job of Otago Museum chief executive and that number has been whittled down to about a dozen. Shortlisting would be carried out over the next week or 10 days with a view to the board making an appointment mid to late January. Conditions for Paul’s replacement will be renegotiated. {continues} #bookmark

  74. Heading off to apply. Huge salary, answer to no one. #Perfectjob

  75. Peter

    Former chair Margaret Collins and deputy chair Malcolm Farry employed this creep on this very generous contract. They are responsible for this huge outpouring of public money to pay him off. Why was he allowed to accrue all this leave in the first place without being told to either take it or lose it? Like many employees have to. How much time did he really have off over the years? Was any of this time off deducted from his annual leave?

  76. Hype O'Thermia

    Someone who worked there said it was very hard to find him on Mondays. And Fridays.

  77. Peter

    ‘Networking’ on the golf course, I wonder?

  78. Anonymous

    Result: And there was much rejoicing! To the future – a revived museum, without dictatorial management and empire builders. May he or she not be embarrassed to ride a bike in Dunedin. Good luck to those staff who have survived the horror.

    • Let’s see if the not ceo turns out to be true.

      Taking a look at the current Otago Museum Trust Board, not very edifying. It’s their pick who replaces Shamwrath.

      Chair: Mr Graham Crombie
      Deputy Chair: Mrs Kate Wilson

      Mr Sydney Brown
      Associate Professor Peter Dearden
      Mrs Gaynor Finch
      Dr David Hutchinson
      Mrs Julie Pearse
      Professor Glenn Summerhayes
      Mr Colin Weatherall
      Dr Jim Williams

      Treasurer/Accountant: Mr Mike Horne (Deloitte)
      Deputy Treasurer/Accountant: Mrs Lisa Wilson (Deloitte)
      Secretary: Chief Executive

      • Dr Griffin’s total annual pay will be $250,000.

        ### ch9.co.nz February 25, 2013 – 6:49pm
        Otago Museum announces new director
        The Otago Museum announced its new director this afternoon. Dr Ian Griffin will take the role at the end of May, taking over from former chief executive Shimrath Paul. Dr Griffin will be moving from his position as chief executive of charitable science foundation the Oxford Trust, in Oxford, England. His other former jobs include director of the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester, a role with NASA in the United States, and chief executive of the Auckland Observatory.
        Ch9 Link [no video available]

  79. Abi

    Can’t wait to hear confirmation that Clare ‘Angry Rash’ Wilson is definitely NOT in charge anymore. Then all she needs to do is quit in digust when the new CEO doesn’t take her bullying. Don’t know what she would do for a job then though – her reputation is toxic. Mind you, she shouldn’t even be the manager of a MacDonalds!

  80. Anonymous

    NASA is well known for its work in extreme environments therefore should help Dr Griffin deal with the cold personalities of its management and long standing hotheads of its board. First order of business should be revoke the recent naming of its wing and undo the insult which stands as a barrier to positive change.

    All the best to the staff of Otago Museum.

  81. Verity

    Right after they rip Shimraths name off the wall (not that you can really see it unless you look hard and know it’s there – deliberate? I think so!) they need an immediate restructure and make everyone reapply for their positions. This would be a great way of getting rid of the toxic staff that remain (CLARE WILSON!!!!!), retaining the good staff and recruiting new people who actually have qualifications and experience in the Museum sector. I can’t wait to see what’s going to happen next :)

  82. Peter

    At least the Board has wisely appointed someone from outside rather than promoting a Paul lackey. Hopefully, Dr Grifffin is a good choice who will breathe fresh air into the place and promote more harmonious staff relationships, where bringing out the best work in people is done in a positive, less punitive, manner.

  83. Hype O'Thermia

    “Excellent news in today’s ODT. Looks like the museum will finally get the leadership it needs and deserves.
    I have it on very good grounds, that Clare was rather upset about it.”
    see http://www.facebook.com/pages/I-survived-the-Otago-Museum/276337832433720?ref=ts&fref=ts

  84. Hype O'Thermia

    The recruiters and appointers did double-check his qualifications this time, I hope.

  85. Whippet

    Cannot agree with you Peter. We are supposed to have a top class university turning out top class graduates ready to tackle anything in the world, but Dunedin keeps importing foreigners for the top jobs to tell us what to do, when we have people born and bred in this country, and loyal to this country capable of doing the job. These foreigners come for a short time to improve their cv’s, tell us what is good for us, then after stuffing everything up head of shore with a bag full of money, leave those of us that are left behind to pay for their cock ups. When will we ever learn… Kiwis have left their mark all around the world, while Dunedin ignores their capabilities. KIWIS FIRST.

    • That is most surely what happens, Whippet – in the majority of cases. Mind you, it happens at the universities too. ‘Jet star travel’.

    • The board had advertised internationally for a replacement, using a recruitment agency, receiving 46 applications[,] from Dunedin, elsewhere in the country and abroad. Mr Crombie said about $50,000 had been spent on the recruitment process.

      ### ODT Online Tue, 26 Feb 2013
      UK recruit to head Otago Museum
      By John Gibb
      The Otago Museum’s new director is Dr Ian Griffin, a British-born professional astronomer, museum specialist and former Nasa head of public outreach. Dr Griffin (47), who will take up the Dunedin post in late May, is chief executive of the Oxford Trust in Oxford, England, a charitable foundation which encourages ”the pursuit of science” and related education. He also chairs the UK Association of Science and Discovery Centres, representing the interests of the 60 centres in Britain. The Dunedin appointment – for which Dr Griffin will receive total annual remuneration of $250,000 – marks the biggest change in the Otago Museum’s operational leadership in 18 years.
      Read more

  86. JimmyJones

    The Board members of the Otago Museum were incompetent when they chose the old Director, Shimrath Paul (BSc) because he didn’t have the skills, and they were incompetent because they were unaware of the problems (or at least did nothing to fix them), and they were incompetent for the grossly excessive amount that they decided to pay Mr Paul ($310,000/yr). Now that they have hired someone else, they seemed to have learned nothing about wasting money: the new guy’s pay is still grossly excessive ($250,000/yr). He seems like a nice chap, but he’s not running the whole country, it’s just a museum, the total revenue is only $7 million/year; the main challenge of the job is deciding where to hide the unspent annual funding (council funding exceeds costs). We need all new Board members – ones that understand money.

  87. Peter

    We can be thankful there has been some progress. The Board no longer has that Collins woman nor – Praise the Lord – Malcolm Farry. The salary has been reduced, but I agree $250k doesn’t seem justified to me either.

    Darren Burden is on the same salary. It amused me the other day how he came out and told us how hard he has been working lately. Even tagging students, during Orientation week, who went to events in the stadium. I’m sorry, Darren, but on that salary we expect our pound of flesh. The job comes before the missus and the family. Results, mate.

    • ### DScene 27 Feb 2013
      New museum chief wants to raise profile (page 2)
      Rules for collections care on list
      By Wilma McCorkindale
      Otago Museum’s new leader, Englishman Dr Ian Griffin, intends raising the institution’s research and academic profile. In an email from his home in Britain, Griffin said he was delighted he would be the ninth Director of the Otago Museum. After an extensive career in museums and related fields – including a stint as chief executive of the Auckland Observatory and Planetarium Trust – Griffin is chief executive of Britain’s Oxford Trust, a charitable trust involved in education, incubation, and technology. Griffin arrives in late May and has lots of ideas for the museum. ‘‘I can’t wait to start working with the team to develop them,’’ he said. Museums should seek ways to support their core operations by running a good commercial operation, but care of and research into the collection was a core part of what a museum should do. ‘‘With my own background in science, and my experience running other museums I will certainly be working from my first day on the job to ensure we meet best practice guidelines for collections care, exploring ways to encourage research into our collections to raise our academic profile. I also want to strengthen partnerships with other museums and research institutions in the region.’’
      {continues} #bookmark

      Register to read DScene online at http://fairfaxmedia.newspaperdirect.com/

  88. Calvin Oaten

    Easy Jimmy, the chairman is one of our most highly esteemed money jugglers the DCC have on its ‘hind teat’. He moves in the rarefied atmosphere where salary scales are not related in any way to reality. It all comes from that great ‘honey pot OPM’. Other people’s money to be frank. Not from his pocket in any way at all.

  89. Well he’s talking the talk.

  90. Hype O'Thermia

    Curiosity is dangerous. People start asking questions, get in the habit of looking at stuff in the museum but instead of saying, “Gee whiz that was fun, almost as good as computer gaming” they look then think then ask Why, and what if, and how did they get to that point with their [technology, fabrics, pottery], and how come these are extinct now, and the next thing you know they are asking questions about what’s happening here and now. And with the sense of entitlement that sweeps the country already in some sectors of everyday life, they’ll start demanding answers.
    Curiosity is VERY dangerous. Best stick to the amusement-parlour model.

  91. Elizabeth, for $1.6m it should be guilded with gold leaf. It’s a tart up of existing plus an atrium or two. How can that be $1.6m? Imagine the house you could build for that money. A zillion rooms all with ensuites, state of the art kitchen, plasma screens triple garages and probably a swimming pool thrown in. Turn some bureaucrats loose and out the window go truckloads of money. Who said the city was hard up?

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