TE MOTU People

A valley of promise; a family with passion

If great wine is grown in the vineyard, then it begins with a great team of people.

Te Motu was established by Paul Dunleavy and his brother John in 1989. They were soon joined by their father Terry Dunleavy, MBE – the inaugural CEO of the Wine Institute of New Zealand.

Like the land itself, the vineyard and winery team at Te Motu has changed over the last two decades, overseen by the constant steady hand of John Dunleavy, chief viticulturist and winemaker.

Over the years, John has been fortunate to be well assisted by capable, diligent and willing 2IC’s:

Miles Gillett, past and current 2IC, left and returned to the Te Motu team to reconnect with something he loves; the family and the way they do things. He has developed a deep understanding of the wine growing process. Drummer extraordinaire, Miles is a great organiser of people and a real asset to the Te Motu team.

Mike Dunleavy, the eldest of the Dunleavy siblings, joined the team in recent years. A green thumb (Mike’s micro greens and tomatoes are legendary on the island), he adds a valuable skill set to the vineyard team. If you listen in the vines for the sounds of a throaty laugh and a transistor radio (no iPod here) you will find Mike.

Bex Dunleavy, Jack Russell Terrier, exceptional bird dog and vineyard companion for many over the last 19 years, recently deceased. She was chosen and published in the ‘Wine Dogs of New Zealand’ by Kevin Judd.

Te Motu also enjoys the constant flow of seasonal workers from Europe, South America and in particular, Argentina. Their colourful, vibrant, culture and their love of Waiheke Island as a destination on their world travels, adds another dimension to the Te Motu team.