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BLAKE Leader Alumni

BLAKE has been celebrating great kiwi leadership through the BLAKE Leader Awards since 2005. 100 BLAKE Leaders have joined a growing group of individuals who follow in the footsteps of Sir Peter and continue to exemplify his extraordinary Kiwi ‘can do’ spirit. We are proud to present our award-winning BLAKE Leader alumni.

BLAKE Medallist 2019

Civic-minded engineer, international businessman and community man. The 2019 BLAKE Medallist is a humble, pragmatic, passionate New Zealander with a huge capacity for contribution. Sir Ron Carter blended a career at the helm of the international consultancy firm he co-founded with decades of significant civil service. Successive Governments turned to him time and again, asking […]

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BLAKE Leader 2019

Founder and CEO of Eat My Lunch, social entrepreneur and businesswoman.  Former corporate marketer Lisa King kept reading about hungry children in New Zealand schools, and she was determined to find a solution. The result is Eat My Lunch, a social enterprise which aims to have a significant impact on a child’s wellbeing and ability […]

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BLAKE Leader 2019 - Youth

Voice for youth, Pasifika and the environment. At just 17 years old, this young man of proud Samoan heritage has developed significant leadership credentials which span community, school, sport and culture. He created and drove a huge student vigil in response to the Christchurch mosque shootings, is a voice for concerns about the environmental challenges […]

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BLAKE Leader 2019 – Environment

Life-long conservationist, talented team-builder, advocate for genuine iwi partnerships. Deidre Vercoe has dedicated her career to bringing endangered birds back from the brink. The life-long conservationist is Operations Manager for DOC’s kākāpō and takahē recovery programmes. From her Invercargill base, she leads teams from Whenua Hou (Codfish Island) in the south to Te Hauturu-o-Toi (Little […]

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BLAKE Leader 2019 – Environment

Founder of Young Ocean Explorers, underwater cameraman and marine educator. Underwater cameraman and storyteller Steve Hathaway is a marine enthusiast with a relentless drive to teach young people about the ocean. After almost 20 years as a builder, Steve quit to pursue his dream of telling underwater stories. He has since supplied footage for documentaries […]

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BLAKE Leader 2019

Leading fashion designer, cultural ambassador, mentor. Fashion designer and cultural ambassador Kiri Nathan has made her name sailing unchartered waters. The determined mother-of-five returned to the marae to learn traditional Māori raranga (weaving) and the making of korowai (cloaks) at the feet of her elders. She used that knowledge to build an internationally-acclaimed high-end fashion […]

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BLAKE Leader 2019

Business leader and sustainability champion. Departing Air New Zealand CEO Christopher Luxon has established the airline as a leader in social, environmental and economic sustainability. The Christchurch-born business leader has announced he will leave Air New Zealand on September 25, destination unknown. But throughout his seven-years at the helm, he has encouraged the airline’s 12,500 […]

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BLAKE Leader 2019

Publisher of New Zealand Geographic, storyteller and champion for the environment. Determined journalist and environmentalist James Frankham wants to give every New Zealander a life-changing experience of the natural world. “Experience is the way we build empathy. Every motivation I have for New Zealand Geographic is about sharing an experience and I guess giving some of the […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2018

Former Member of Parliament. Dame Tariana Turia came to prominence as a leader during the 79-day Pakaitore/Moutua Gardens protest in 1995 – in the 19 years that followed, hers became a household name across New Zealand as she worked to improve the lives of Māori. By the time mainstream New Zealand met Dame Tariana, she […]

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BLAKE Leader 2018 – Environment

Associate Professor, University of Auckland. Associate Professor Rochelle Constantine is an accomplished biologist, an inspirational lecturer, and a relentless champion for the marine environment. She has led high-profile marine research voyages, achieved feats considered “unimaginable” in conservation science and is credited with inspiring and mentoring the next wave of New Zealand marine scientists through her […]

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BLAKE Leader 2018

Principal at Tamaki College. For the past 27 years, Soana Akolotu Pamaka has devoted her considerable energy and skill to one incredibly lucky school. She taught at East Auckland’s Tamaki College on section in 1990 and the next year, as a new mother, she accepted a position at the school as an English teacher. Her […]

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BLAKE Leader 2018

Founder of the Pop-up Globe theatre. Dr Miles Gregory took a Shakespearean dream inspired by his daughter and turned it into a modern-day New Zealand success story. The Auckland artistic director is the founder and visionary behind the world’s first Pop-up Globe theatre, recreating a full-scale working replica of 1614 London’s famous venue.  Since it […]

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BLAKE Leader 2018

Barrister. To understand what has driven Sandra Alofivae to become such a transformative figure in South Auckland life, you first have to know the three pillars that hold up her world: family, faith and an unwavering belief in the power of community. All three elements have governed virtually every action Sandra has taken over the […]

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BLAKE Leader 2018

Founder and CEO of Rocket Lab. Peter Beck is leading the small satellite launch revolution. He is the founder and CEO of Rocket Lab, an orbital launch company revolutionising access to space for small satellites. Peter has grown Rocket Lab to become a globally recognised industry leader in space and a billion-dollar company employing hundreds […]

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BLAKE Leader 2018

Co-founder and CEO of LearnCoach. David Cameron never set out to start an education revolution – he just wanted to help his Otago Boys’ High School maths students pass their exams. In the six years since, however, he has helped create an empire of learning; a social enterprise reaching hundreds of thousands of New Zealand […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2017

Emeritus Professor of Maori Research and Development at Massey University. Sir Mason Durie is an exceptional academic and a highly-regarded leader in public and indigenous health, wellbeing and education. A man who has worked tirelessly to improve the outcomes and futures of Maori, and who continues to dedicate his life to making a better New […]

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BLAKE Leader 2017

Executive Officer, HMNZS PHILOMEL at Royal New Zealand Navy. For over three decades Lieutenant Commander Kerry Tutty has served her country as a driven and dedicated member of our Defence Force. She is a highly-respected leader within the Royal New Zealand Navy, a top athlete, and a volunteer coach, who is focused on drawing people […]

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BLAKE Leader 2017

Director, Ngāi Tahu Research Centre. Dr Te Maire Tau is one of New Zealand’s great tribal historians, a leader of his hapu, and a strong voice in the rebuild of Christchurch. He helps to build relationships between indigenous people around the world, and inspires the next generation of Maori leaders. As a historian, a leader in […]

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BLAKE Leader 2017

Director, Southern South Island at Department of Conservation. Aaron Fleming has shown outstanding leadership skills during times of crisis and change in several different fields. He is an author and ambassador, a respected leader of people, a champion of the environment, and an athlete who has defied the medical world. Improving the lives of New Zealanders […]

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BLAKE Leader 2017

Owner, Pak n Save Albany. Paul Blackwell is regarded as one of New Zealand’s most respected and effective business leaders, but is also revered as inspirational leader in the wider community. He is famous for building winning cultures, within the grocery industry and the country’s most successful sporting franchise. And with the help of his business […]

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BLAKE Leader 2017

Director of Genesis Energy Ltd and Regional Facilities, Auckland.  Rukumoana Schaafhausen left school at 15, but was determined to do something with her life to make a difference to others. So, she became a lawyer, director and an influential member of her Waikato-Tainui iwi. She is also a champion of young Maori women, who she encourages […]

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BLAKE Leader 2017

Director, The William Pike Challenge Award. Losing a leg in a volcanic eruption has not changed William Pike’s passion for life. Instead, he constantly shows the world how to turn adversity into opportunity, and is focused on teaching Kiwis kids that they, too, can do anything they put their minds to. William Pike’s tenacious passion […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2016

Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor. One of New Zealand’s preeminent scientists, the 2016 Blake Medallist, Sir Peter Gluckman, has built a stellar career of research excellence and leadership in his commitment to creating “a better New Zealand”. While Sir Peter’s leadership roles and standing in the world of health research is unparalleled in New Zealand’s […]

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BLAKE Leader 2016

Founder, The Mind Lab.  Through innovative thinking, courage and perseverance, Frances Valintine delivers learning programmes that prepare today’s students for tomorrow’s digital world. Her ability to understand the impact of the digital age and technological advances on future generations has made her a transformational leader, determined to make a difference in schools, in the workplace […]

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BLAKE Leader 2016

Partner, Minter Ellison Rudd Watts.  Blake Leader Stacey Shortall is an outstanding lawyer. But it’s what she does to help and motivate others that makes her a remarkable leader. Respected globally in the legal community with more than 20 years of experience to her name, Stacey has a deep commitment to improving the lives of […]

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BLAKE Leader 2016

Chef de Mission, Rio Olympics. As one of New Zealand’s most esteemed athletes, Rob Waddell is taking all he has learned as an Olympic gold medallist and America’s Cup gladiator and transferring it into successful leadership. In the mould of Sir Peter Blake, Rob is renowned for “dreaming big”.A strong advocate of team work, Rob’s […]

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BLAKE Leader 2016

Head of the Bioluminescent Superbugs Lab, University of Auckland. For years, Dr Siouxsie Wiles has drawn praise for her research into tiny organisms which glow in the dark – now it’s her leadership skills which are gaining attention, in the scientific community and beyond. She heads the Bioluminescent Superbugs Group at the University of Auckland […]

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BLAKE Leader 2016

Founder, Diversity Limited. From technology evangelist to entrepreneur, mentor to commentator, emergency volunteer to business adviser – Ben Kepes is spreading his net wide to create a legacy through leadership. He is driven to find ways to make a positive impact on the world, either directly or by helping others to realise their own innate […]

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BLAKE Leader 2016

Associate Professor, Antarctic Research Centre. At home in the coldest place on earth, Dr Nancy Bertler is making a major contribution to exploring climate change in Antarctica, and helping New Zealanders understand the consequences of a warming world. As one of the country’s most outstanding research leaders, Nancy has founded the field of ice core […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2015

Businessman and Environmentalist. 2015 Blake Medallist, Sir Rob Fenwick, is a businessman and environmentalist who has devoted a lifetime to the conservation of natural and human heritage in New Zealand and Antarctica. Sir Rob’s contribution to safeguarding our environment, through sustainability, wildlife protection and waste minimisation, will benefit New Zealanders for decades to come – […]

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BLAKE Leader 2015

Head of Sustainability, Environment and Communities – ‎Contact Energy Ltd.  Blake Leader Tina Porou is a vibrant trailblazer in a new generation of Māori leaders. Of Ngāti Porou and Ngāti Tuwharetoa descent, Tina is deeply committed to her whānau, hapū and iwi, and is dedicated to using her skills to grow their aspirations. Across boardroom […]

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BLAKE Leader 2015

Chief Executive, Rise UP Trust. Like the mission statement of her revolutionary school in South Auckland, Sita Selupe is raising leaders, one child at a time. What began as a Saturday morning home school for whanau in her garage a decade ago, has evolved into a celebrated educational trust which has helped over 200 families […]

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BLAKE Leader 2015

‘Nanogirl’ – Scientist, Adventurer, Speaker. Dr Michelle Dickinson – and her superhero alter-ego Nanogirl – use leadership to inspire others to move towards positive goals for the planet and the people on it. The Blake Leader believes she fell into leadership as others have sought her guidance and been inspired by what she does – […]

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BLAKE Leader 2015

Regional Director for North America, NZTE. From the other side of the Pacific, Blake Leader Claudia Batten proves you don’t have to stand on New Zealand soil to help New Zealanders grow to international greatness. At her New Zealand Trade and Enterprise office in Los Angeles, the lawyer-turned-digital innovator and serial entrepreneur is now in […]

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BLAKE Leader 2015

Former Black Caps Cricket Captain. Amidst the cauldron of fierce competition, Black Caps captain Brendon McCullum has emerged as one of the most successful and innovative leaders in international cricket. Humble, unselfish, level-headed and a fantastic leader by example on the field, Brendon has carried the New Zealand cricket side through a sometimes difficult and […]

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BLAKE Leader 2015

Chief Executive, Arts Centre of Christchurch. André Lovatt’s decision to return home after the Christchurch earthquakes to help rebuild a national treasure has been invaluable to the healing of the city’s cultural heart and reviving an even wider community. The Blake Leader brought home with him a wealth of engineering know-how, leadership, management and communication […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2014

New Zealand director, producer & screenwriter. Sir Peter Jackson is a visionary New Zealand director, producer and screenwriter, whose outstanding leadership and passion for film making has changed the face of the movie industry in New Zealand and taken Hollywood by storm. Sir Peter began his filmmaking career at the age of eight, creating short […]

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BLAKE Leader 2014

Co-Founder and CEO of Jucy. Tim Alpe is a dynamic New Zealand business leader, renowned for his ability to engage and motivate teams to achieve outstanding results. Tim is the Chief JUCYFIER (aka CEO) and co-founder of JUCY, a global tourism company operating car and campervan rentals, JUCY cruise, JUCY budget accommodation, the JUCY by […]

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BLAKE Leader 2014

Head of NZ for the 2015 Cricket World Cup. Therese Walsh is a highly-respected figure in the New Zealand sporting industry and her capability as a leader, as well as the critical role she’s played in overseeing a number of major international events, has allowed her to shine as one of the most influential women […]

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BLAKE Leader 2014

Founder, Extreme Living. Sarah Robb-O’Hagan is one of New Zealand’s most successful women in business, who is making an impact on the global stage. She is recognised as a powerful leader when it comes to creating a culture of innovation and fostering creativity within her teams. When recognised as a Blake Leader, Sarah was President […]

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BLAKE Leader 2014

CEO & Owner, MedRecruit Limited. Sam Hazledine is a New Zealand author, speaker, extreme skiing champion and doctor, whose medical recruitment service, MedRecruit, is helping ensure that healthcare providers, across New Zealand and Australia, are connected with well-trained, qualified medical staff to ensure the very best patient care. Today, MedRecruit has both Queenstown and Australian […]

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BLAKE Leader 2014

Sustainable NZ fisherman & Ocean Advocate. Matt Watson is a courageous and respected New Zealand television fishing personality, who is passionate about our oceans, the preservation of New Zealand fish stocks and demonstrating sustainable practices. Today Matt is still the host and producer of the show that he started, ‘ITM Fishing Show’, having made more […]

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BLAKE Leader 2014

Entrepreneur & Premier Footwear Designer. Kathryn Wilson is an entrepreneur and leader of one of the fastest-growing fashion brands in New Zealand. In just a decade, Kathryn Wilson has established herself as New Zealand’s premier footwear designer and as an influential and successful businesswoman. From a very young age Kathryn Wilson’s dream was to “make […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2013

NZ’s first Principal Youth Court Judge.  Judge Michael Brown dramatically changed the juvenile court system and significantly improved outcomes for individuals and families through his transformational leadership of the youth justice system. He introduced the concept of family conferencing in place of criminal proceedings for serious juvenile offenders, changing the focus from juvenile crime and […]

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BLAKE Leader 2013

Principal, Spotswood College. Nicola Ngarewa has led a dramatic turnaround of Tamatea High School. Under her leadership, an underperforming decile three school has become an aspirational and high-achieving learning environment rivalling some of the top schools in New Zealand. With a belief in the ability of every individual to achieve, Nicola’s leadership style, as Principal, […]

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BLAKE Leader 2013

Leader in Social Change & Disability; Chief Executive, Be. Institute – ‎Be. Accessible. Minnie Baragwanath has been a leader in driving social change over the last 15 years, for New Zealanders with disabilities. Minnie is Chief Executive and founder of the Be. Institute, a social enterprise that aims to work across all sectors and communities throughout […]

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BLAKE Leader 2013

Principal, Flaxmere College. Louise Anaru has led the transformation of an underperforming low-decile school to one that is achieving extraordinary results. When Louise first came to Flaxmere College, as a first-time principal in 2010, the achievement results for the students were poor. Undaunted by the challenge, Louise immediately set a course of positive change, by […]

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BLAKE Leader 2013

Māori role model in medicine and health care. Dr. Lance O’Sullivan is considered to be one of New Zealand’s most inspirational role models in medicine, healthcare and for Maori. For his achievements, Lance was announced winner of the Health section for ‘Maori of the year’ and the Supreme Award for Maori of the Year/Nga Toa […]

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BLAKE Leader 2013

New Zealand Trade and Enterprise – North America team; Sporting legend. Beatrice Faumuinā is a fearless champion for Pasifika leadership and business in New Zealand. A World Champion, World Cup Champion, four-time Olympian, Halberg Award-winner and two-time Commonwealth Champion and record holder, Beatrice began her leadership journey as one of New Zealand’s sporting heroes and […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2012

Leader in sports, education and governance. Sir John Graham has demonstrated transformational change and inspirational leadership on the sporting field, in the classroom and at the board table. An outstanding exponent of New Zealand’s national game, he played 22 Tests for the All Blacks between 1958 and 1964, including three as captain. He is widely […]

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BLAKE Leader 2012

Film Director. Roseanne Liang is a leading light for modern Kiwi feature films and the filmmaking industry in New Zealand. Achieving international success with her documentary Banana in a Nutshell and film My Wedding and Other Secrets, Roseanne knows what it takes to inspire a team of people to turn a creative idea into a highly esteemed work. Roseanne […]

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BLAKE Leader 2012

All Blacks Captain 2006-2015. Richie McCaw is among the finest captains in All Blacks history, constantly demonstrating the art of leading from the front. Leading by example, he has perfected the art of creating and inspiring a winning team, encouraging his teammates to lift their game and be the best they can be. With a […]

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BLAKE Leader 2012

Founder of Yellow Brick Road Ltd; CEO Kono NZ. Blake Leader Rachel Taulelei is described as having led change in the New Zealand fishing industry. At 40, the founder and CEO of Yellow Brick Road Ltd, has had success in the development of an innovative sustainable supply of fresh fish to restaurants across the country. […]

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BLAKE Leader 2012

Founder of Borderless Productions. Qiujing Wong co-founded Borderless Productions in 2006 with a passion to create positive, economic, social and environmental change. Shas a genius for turning her vision into real action and inspiring social change by addressing some of society’s most difficult issues through film. The award winning company, which has produced innovative films […]

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BLAKE Leader 2012

Host and producer of the Amazing Race. Philip Keoghan is one of the world’s most well-known New Zealanders, and has the ability to inspire and mobilise hundreds of thousands of people across the globe to make a difference. Widely known as the host of network television series The Amazing Race, Phil uses his worldwide reach to […]

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BLAKE Leader 2012

Senior Consultant, Governance and Director. Kapu Waretini found himself in leadership roles from a young age, and has dedicated his career to Maori improvement in the public sector, and local communities. Kapu has always wanted to serve his people and ensure they have the best possible access to opportunities. Kapu’s commitment to quality accreditation for […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2011

Chair of Environment Canterbury. Dame Margaret Bazley is seen by many as the country’s most respected public servant and problem solver. She has demonstrated transformational leadership that has helped shape public policy and administration over a five-decade-long career. Dame Margaret held senior leadership roles in the health sector, the State Services Commission, the Ministry of […]

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BLAKE Leader 2011

Managing Director, Team One Corporate Development. Tawera Nikau made his name in the highly competitive world of rugby league. A veteran of 19 tests for New Zealand as a forward, Tawera went on to captain the New Zealand Maori team at the Rugby League World Cup and has since been inducted into the New Zealand […]

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BLAKE Leader 2011

PhD candidate, Oxford University. Rebecca Elvin has worked as a Judicial Intern at the Supreme Court of the United States, a Judges’ Clerk at the High Court of New Zealand and a Legal Intern at the International Criminal Court in The Hague. Originally from Tauranga, Rebecca graduated from the University of Otago with degrees in Law […]

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BLAKE Leader 2011

Founder, Student Volunteer Army. Sam Johnson demonstrates incredible strength and leadership capabilities well beyond age. As a response to the September earthquake in Christchurch in 2010, Sam quickly mobilised to form and lead the Canterbury Student Volunteer Army (SVA). Within a week, the Student Army was thousands strong, via networking through social media. Sam’s team […]

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BLAKE Leader 2011

Former CEO, NRL Canterbury Bulldogs. Raelene Castle is variously described as one of the country’s top sports administrators and the most influential woman in New Zealand sport. As chief executive of Netball New Zealand, she transformed the organisation into a strategically focused business and helped netball grow significantly in its profile, commercial investment and as […]

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BLAKE Leader 2011

Founder IronMaori. In 2009, Heather Skipworth conceived the idea of Maori competing in an indigenous Maori half-ironman event. Such was its success, the event has more than doubled in size and attracts Maori from throughout Aotearoa. With more than 1,500 registrants, the event has taken on a life of its own in Maori communities. Rather […]

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BLAKE Leader 2011

Entrepreneur and philanthropist. Derek Handley was one of the youngest executives to list a company in New Zealand, and created seven start-up ventures in as many years. In 2001, the New York-based Kiwi co-founded the Hyperfactory with his brother Geoffrey; a company named in Entrepreneur Magazines Top 100 Brilliant Ideas for 2010, the Hyperfactory has […]

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BLAKE Leader 2011

CEO Magritek. Dr Andrew Coy is the CEO of one of the country’s leading high-tech companies, Magritek Ltd, and has built a team that managed to net multimillion dollar international sales in 2010. Andrew has a genius for breaking down barriers between the disciplines of academia and business, science and engineering, and Magritek makes magnetic […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2010

Chief Executive, Medicine Mondiale. Sir Ray Avery is a pharmaceutical scientist and social entrepreneur whose groundbreaking work and visionary leadership is improving the lives of millions of the world’s poorest and most vulnerable people. The low-cost intraocular lenses he developed, costing less than $6, make modern cataract surgery available to the poorest of the poor. […]

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BLAKE Leader 2010

Consultant Paediatrician, poet, short story writer and playwright, Renee Liang, a second generation Chinese New Zealander, is a consultant paediatrician whose research looks at human development trajectories from early life to adolescence. She is also a widely published poet, short story writer, blogger and playwright – her plays Lantern, The First Asian AB and The Bone Feeder have played […]

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BLAKE Leader 2010

Consultant & Trustee on the Ngati Whatua o Orakei Maori Trust Board. Ngarimu Blair works on behalf of Ngati Whatua o Orakei to draw on the riches of Māori heritage in creating unique spaces and instilling a sense of place, identity and pride. A geography and Māori graduate from the University of Auckland, Ngarimu promotes […]

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BLAKE Leader 2010

Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and Co-Director of the Center for Computational Engineering, MIT. Karen Willcox aspires to become New Zealand’s first astronaut, and – a finalist in the 2009 NASA Astronaut Selection – has demonstrated her unshakeable commitment to realising this dream. As Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics and Co-Director of the Center for […]

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BLAKE Leader 2010

CEO of Te Tumu Paeroa. Jamie Tuuta is a self-employed consultant, with a diverse background which includes agribusiness, fishing, investment, health, treaty settlements and Māori development, committed to supporting and motivating New Zealand organisations to increase their capability. Passionate about the potential of this country and its people, Jamie is particularly focused on improving the […]

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BLAKE Leader 2010

CEO Foodstuffs North Island Ltd. Chris Quin has been Chief Executive – Telecom Retail, and is currently Chief Executive – Foodstuffs North Island Ltd. In 2004, Chris drove Telecom’s acquisitions of IT services companies, Gen-i and Computerland to form the new business known as Gen-i. In leading the merger of these three previously competing teams, […]

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BLAKE Leader 2010

Founder and Trustee, The CatWalk Spinal Cord Injury Trust. Catriona Williams is the founder and a trustee of The CatWalk Spinal Cord Injury Trust, pushing the boundaries of research to enable spinal cord injury (SCI) sufferers to walk again. Catriona has driven and shaped what started as a single fundraising initiative into a respected and […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2009

President and Chief Executive, The Robertson Foundation. Sir John Hood’s appointment to the position of Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford in 2004 marked the first time, in its 900-year history, a person had been selected for the position from outside the institution. Formerly Vice-Chancellor of The University of Auckland, Sir John’s appointment to one […]

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BLAKE Leader 2009

Wing Commander, Royal New Zealand Air Force. Wing Commander Russell Mardon joined the RNZAF as a pilot at the age of nineteen. In as many years since, he has demonstrated inspirational leadership in New Zealand and abroad in testing combat environments, undertaking tours of duty and commanding numerous RNZAF helicopter detachments on operations in Antarctica, […]

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BLAKE Leader 2009

Partner, Bell Gully. Rachel Paris has broken ground in the legal community as the first partner to be appointed in a part-time capacity at her commercial law firm Bell Gully. Demonstrating professional leadership by negotiating this partnership arrangement, the 32-year-old hopes to inspire a fundamental shift in the traditional business model for law firms and […]

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BLAKE Leader 2009

Chief Executive, Synlait. John Penno is Chief Executive of Synlait, an integrated dairy farming enterprise. Synlait produces more than 75 million litres of milk and manufacturing 30,000 tonnes of dairy product for export each year, with ambitious goals for New Zealand’s dairy industry and its contribution to economic growth. John had to successfully engage the […]

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BLAKE Leader 2009

Principal, Howick College. Iva Ropati led the successful transformation of One Tree College and in doing so, helped instill a sense of pride and identity beyond the school gate to the wider community. When the former league professional was appointed as Principal, the college, then known as Penrose High, was not the first choice of […]

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BLAKE Leader 2009

Chief Executive, The Icehouse. Andy Hamilton is a tireless advocate for improving the funding availability and fundability of start-up businesses. He is the founding Chief Executive of The ICEHOUSE and has played a leading role in the formation of the business incubation and angel investment sectors in New Zealand. The ICEHOUSE is an Auckland-based business […]

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BLAKE Leader 2009

Member of Parliament. Alfred Ngaro is a respected leader in a number of community-led development projects encompassing education, health and social issues such as youth development, anti-violence campaigns and positive parenting projects. His strength in uniting groups with diverse interests and providing creative solutions is demonstrated with his key role in the proposed Tamaki Transformation […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2008

Founder, The Halberg Trust. Sir Murray Halberg is one of New Zealand’s most well-known sportspeople who, through the development and ongoing leadership of the Halberg Trust, has dedicated the best part of his life to promoting the inclusion of children with disabilities in sport and active leisure. Sir Murray had a stellar athletics career beating […]

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BLAKE Leader 2008

Director, Sarah Ulmer Brand. Sarah Ulmer is one of New Zealand’s best known sportspeople and a cyclist of true world-class standing. Sarah has been a World and Olympic Champion and is the current World Record holder for the showcase track cycling event, the 3000m Women’s Individual Pursuit. Sarah was also a back-to-back Commonwealth Games Champion […]

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BLAKE Leader 2008

Managing Director, Funktion Music. Rebecca won the Blake Leader Award at the young age of 26. Rebecca founded Funktion Music, her music management company, at the age of 19 while still at University. Funktion grew out of a love for New Zealand music and started from the humble beginnings of organising jazz gigs. It has grown […]

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BLAKE Leader 2008

Playwright and actor. Oscar Kightley was born in Samoa and immigrated to New Zealand with his mother when he was four years old. Oscar first recognised his ability to make people laugh when he was a school boy, and at Rutherford High he developed his skills in humour and English (but not maths!) further. Oscar […]

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BLAKE Leader 2008

CEO of Peppers Carrington Resort, Northland. Mike Sabin was elected as a Member of Parliament in 2011. When he won the Blake Leader Award, he was serving as the director of MethCon Group Limited, a consultancy company he founded which specialised in providing education, advice and strategies relating to methamphetamine, or ‘P’. MethCon aimed to […]

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BLAKE Leader 2008

Chief Advisor, Service Improvement at Ministry of Health NZ. Keriana’s commitment to primary health began when she took on the position of Planning and Funding Manager at Tairawhiti District Health in 2001, overseeing the establishment of the Primary Health Organisation (PHO) in Gisborne that she led from 2001 until 2011. Design and implementation of clinical […]

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BLAKE Leader 2008

CEO and Co-founder of KidsCan Charitable Trust. Julie Chapman (nee Helson) co-founded the KidsCan Charitable Trust and is currently the CEO. KidsCan is a national charity dedicated to levelling the playing field for New Zealand children living in poverty. It was established to meet the basic physical and nutritional needs of disadvantaged Kiwi children by […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2007

Former Director of the MacDiarmid Institute and Professor of Physical Sciences. Professor Sir Paul Callaghan was one of New Zealand’s best known and highly respected scientists, both within the scientific community and among the wider population. He showed outstanding leadership for over 30 years as a scientist, a teacher, a science administrator and communicator. Sir […]

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BLAKE Leader 2007

Headmaster, Auckland Grammar. Tim O’Connor was Rector (Headmaster) of Palmerston North Boys High School since 2003. During his tenure the school developed a number of significant initiatives which has seen the school become a leader in education in the country. Tim implemented a specific leadership programme at the school, initiated a teacher mentoring programme and […]

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BLAKE Leader 2007

Principal, Wakatipu High School. Steve Hall was the Chief Executive of the Halberg Trust, an organisation working to honour sporting excellence and linking people with a disability to sport and active leisure. When Steve was awarded a Blake Leader Award in 2007, he was the School Director at the Outward Bound Trust of New Zealand […]

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BLAKE Leader 2007

CEO, Waikato Bay of Plenty Cancer Society. Shelley Campbell became ‎CEO at the Waikato Bay of Plenty Cancer Society in 2017, after being Chief Executive of the Sir Peter Blake Trust since 2010. Prior to this, she was the Chief Executive of Waikato Primary Health (the nation’s second largest Primary Health Organisation). During her tenure she led the implementation […]

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BLAKE leader 2007

Group Manager Benefits & Provider Relations for NIB, Sydney. Justin Vaughn was the Chief Executive of New Zealand Cricket and has served in a number of leadership capacities in his chosen sport including as a captain of the Auckland Cricket team and as a member of the board for both Auckland and New Zealand cricket. […]

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BLAKE leader 2007

CEO of First Foundation. Annette Fale was recognised as a Blake Leader for her work with young people in New Zealand. In 2001 Annette became general manager of The Halogen Foundation, an organisation dedicated to inspiring and influencing a generation of young people to recognise their leadership potential. Through the foundation, Annette led the annual […]

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BLAKE Leader 2007

Business Manager of ASG E-Guard. Andrew Grant was the Commanding Officer of the Royal New Zealand Navy frigate HMNZS TE KAHA in 2008 when he became a Blake Leader. He had the primary leadership responsibility for the ship’s safety, personnel, and operations. Andrew had a passion for making improvements to the Royal New Zealand Navy […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2006

Founder and Chair, The Warehouse Ltd and The Tindall Foundation. Sir Stephen’s vision for creating an organisation to provide support for worthwhile initiatives benefiting New Zealand and New Zealanders resulted in the establishment of The Tindall Foundation. This has grown to become Australasia’s single largest philanthropic trust and it has provided enormous behind the scenes support […]

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BLAKE Leader 2006

Director Business Relations, AUT University. Sarah was most recently Director of Business Relations at AUT University’s Business School, and oversaw the prestigious AUT Excellence in Business Support Awards and other industry engagement strategies. Sarah has run her own businesses for 18 years so understands the rewards of success and the challenges of failure in the […]

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BLAKE Leader 2006

Chief Executive of The Blues. Michael became Hamilton’s youngest-ever Mayor when he was elected in October 2004 aged 38. Despite having no previous local body experience, Michael united a council to make possible the requisite strategic and innovative decision-making for a fast-developing city. During his term, he oversaw and articulated a new vision for Hamilton’s […]

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BLAKE Leader 2006

Director, New Zealand Antarctic Research Institute. Dr Gary Wilson developed an international reputation for his research early on in his career. He held a Fulbright Award whilst at Victoria University, followed by the Admiral Byrd Fellowship at The Ohio State University. He was also a New Zealand Foundation for Research Fellow, before taking up a […]

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BLAKE Leader 2006

Chief Executive, Affirming Works. Emeline is the founder of Affirming Works Ltd, an innovative social service organisation developed in Manukau City. The company delivers mentoring programmes across all school levels based on the Model of Pacific Collective Mentoring, working with up to 400 young people per year. Her work in this area has led to […]

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BLAKE Leader 2006

Managing Director, McConnell Group. David McConnell combines leadership of a large commercial organisation with a number of pro bono and other corporate activities. He is Managing Director of McConnell Ltd. With a background in business development, specialising in property, construction and infrastructure, he has been instrumental in overseeing and managing the performance of the company’s […]

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BLAKE Leader 2006

Managing Director for Superior Personnel. Andrew Berry became a Blake Leader in 2006 while serving as the Area Community Services Manager for Counties-Manukau Police. As part of his role, he led over thirty staff, initiating, maintaining and improving community relationships, and was responsible for the leadership of the Otara Police Station. Andrew was in the […]

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BLAKE Medallist 2005

Chair and Director of private and Government entities. Sir John was formerly Chief Executive of the ANZ National Bank. He has a distinctive approach to business leadership – he appoints the best person for the team and empowers them to get on with the job. He invests heavily in their personal development and is very […]

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BLAKE Leader 2005

First Foundation Founder & CEO of Landcorp Farming Ltd. Steven founded the FirstFoundation in 1998 after recognising the need to assist talented, but financially disadvantaged youth in reaching their potential. The Foundation partners these youth with New Zealand companies, who provide assistance for tertiary education, work experience and links with a personal mentor. The First Foundation has […]

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BLAKE Leader 2005

Director, Experiencing Marine Reserves. Samara Nicholas (nee Sutherland) is a marine education and conservation advocate who established the Experiencing Marine Reserves programme in Northland in 2002. At the time of receiving her award she was a member of a variety of local conservation groups and coordinated a number of special events with a focus on marine conservation. […]

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BLAKE Leader 2005

Managing Director, Forsyth Barr. Neil is currently the Managing Director of nationwide sharebroking and investment house Forsyth Barr. Over recent years he has overseen the transformation and growth of the company, from a staff number of 85 to 180, into a widely diversified business covering the full range of private client and institutional broking, funds management […]

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BLAKE Leader 2005

Founder, Terra Sancta Wines. Mark was the CEO of New Zealand Exchange between June 2002 and 2011. In that time he led it through its transformation from a mutual to a listed company, launched a new market, changed the exchange’s overall approach, and brought home the role and relevance of capital markets to New Zealand’s […]

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BLAKE Leader 2005

CEO of The Parenting Place. Greg left the field of chartered accountancy in 1998 to address what he believed lay at the heart of New Zealand’s social disconnectedness: family fragmentation. Appointed General Manager of the non-profit organisation, Parenting With Confidence (now ‘Parents Inc’), Greg expanded the six-person, $500k charitable organisation to a staff of 20, […]

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BLAKE Leader 2005

CEO, Metlifecare. Glen was selected for Sir Peter Blake’s 1985/86 Whitbread Round the World Yacht Race campaign onboard Lion New Zealand. Subsequently, Glen sailed onboard the victorious Steinlager 2, helmed the back up boat for the New Zealand Challenge for the America’s Cup in 1991/92 and was then selected as a watch captain by Grant Dalton for […]

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