NZer of Year shortlist announced


The New Zealander of the Year 2015 Awards Office has announced the shortlist of people being considered for the 2015 Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year.

They are:

• Dr Sharad Paul: Surgeon and skin cancer specialist (Auckland)
• Sir John Kirwan: Rugby coach, mental health and depression awareness advocate (Auckland)
• Cassandra Treadwell: Chief executive and founder, So They Can (Lower Hutt)
• Sir Stephen Tindall: Founder, The Tindall Foundation (Auckland)
• Julie Chapman: Chief executive and founder, KidsCan Charitable Trust (Auckland)
• Barbara Ala’alatoa: Principal, Sylvia Park School (Auckland)
• Roana Bennett: Manager, Te Taumata o Ngati Whakaue Trust (Rotorua)
• Dr Susan Parry: Auckland City Hospital and Ministry of Health (Auckland)
• Cynthia Ward: True Colours Children’s Health Trust (Hamilton)
• Judge Peter Boshier: Law Commissioner (Wellington)

Comment from Chief Judge Cameron Bennett

Determining the New Zealander of Year is a very tough job for the judging panel. The calibre of nominations was very high.

Each of these individuals is extraordinary. Some have worked tirelessly to making other Kiwis better off while others have inspired us through being the very best at their chosen fields. All of them are unique and special New Zealanders. They are all Kiwis of whom we can be very proud.


The annual New Zealander of the Year awards are in their sixth year. They recognise, encourage and reward New Zealand’s most vital asset – its people. It is open to all New Zealanders and celebrates the contributions of Kiwis from all walks of life. More than 230 nominations were received for the 2015 Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year.

In January, the judging panel – comprising representatives of all the awards patrons, presenters, sponsors, community leaders and independent experts – will announce the final shortlist of three people being considered for the 2015 Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year.

The winner will be announced at the New Zealander of the Year Gala Awards evening in Auckland on 25 February, 2015.

Previous winners of the New Zealander of the Year Award are: Dr Lance O’Sullivan (2014), Dame Anne Salmond (2013), Sir Richard Taylor (2012), Sir Paul Callaghan (2011) and Sir Ray Avery (2010).

Other categories

The New Zealander of the Year Awards 2015 will also be honouring New Zealanders who have performed with distinction in five award categories. The semifinalists for those categories are:

University of Auckland Young New Zealander of the Year

Ben Dowdle (Auckland); Guy Ryan (Wellington); Tabby Besley (Wellington); Sebastian Hallum-Clarke (Wellington); Ella Yelich-O’Connor “Lorde” (Auckland); Jason Pemberton (Christchurch); Matt Strawbridge (Wellington); William Pike (Auckland); Te Rawhitiroa Bosch (Waikato); Henrietta McNeill (Invercargill); Malvindar Singh-Bains (Auckland).

Metlifecare Senior New Zealander of the Year

Donald Sew Hoy (Auckland); Dr Brian Broom (Auckland); Gaylene Preston (Wellington); Kerry Bensemann (Christchurch); Betty van Gaalen (Kapiti); Kai Luey (Auckland); Bob Robertson (Queenstown); Roger Robinson (Auckland); Tong Too (Napier).

Mitre 10 Community of the Year

Paihia!; VisionWest Community Trust (Auckland); Kidscan (Auckland/NZ); Central Lakes Trust (Otago); Givealittle (NZ); South Alive Invercargill; Community Fruit Harvesting (Auckland/NZ); Pathway Trust (Christchurch); Rural Women New Zealand (NZ); Te Whangai Trust (NZ).

Sanitarium Innovator of the Year

Peter Beck (Auckland); Professor Shaun Holt (Tauranga); Kayne Horsham (Wellington); Glenn Martin (Christchurch); BCS Group (Auckland); Chris Rodley (Nelson); Neville Jopson (Dunedin); Pat Martin (Christchurch); William Palmer and Peter Beguely (Auckland); Peter Stothers (Auckland).

Kiwibank Local Heroes Awards

Amy Burke (Christchurch); Billie Jordan (Waiheke Island); Donald Rogers (Auckland); Helen Davidson (Roxburgh); Helen Henderson (Lower Hutt); Trevor Clarke (Auckland); Talitha Vandenberg (Paihiatua); Dame June Mariu (Auckland); Peter Willsman (Queenstown); Steven Parkinson-Loane (Christchurch).

More information on the awards is here.


Good people, good businesses


The finalists for the Kiwibank New Zealander of the Year are:

Dr Sharad Paul Auckland :

 Dr Paul is a medical doctor who’s Skin Surgery Clinic gives free skin cancer checks every year and offers treatment for the fraction of the cost of other specialists. In 2010 he invented the first new skin graft technique for 100 years that cuts costs, pain and healing time for patients. He has also just developed the first skin cream range dedicated for brown skin. In addition to his medical achievements, he runs an award winning bookstore and uses all of its proceeds to fund literacy programs in low decile Auckland schools, with the aim of helping children to “dream with their eyes wide open”. In the words of his nominator, “he is one of the most inspiring, intelligent and compassionate men you are likely to meet”.

Sir Richard Taylor Wellington:

 Richard Taylor is an extraordinary New Zealander. He has set a shining example by being a global player in the international movie industry, but decidedly choosing to base himself in New Zealand. His company Weta, is a huge success, employing well over 1000 people and will annual revenues in the 100s of millions per annum. But most importantly, Richard is a passionate and articulate New Zealander, committed to this country, and committed to showing New Zealanders that we can do it here. Let me quote “Why shouldn’t it be us? We stay here firmly in Miramar, Wellington, New Zealand, first because we are New Zealanders and this is our home and I don’t believe I would work in this sector, in this field, if I had to work somewhere else. This is where I want to work and you couldn’t hope to work anywhere more fulfilling”.
Richard is an intensely decent man. He is committed to his family. Despite his enormous list of Hollywood successes and multiple Oscars, the work he is most proud of is the TV series “Jane and the Dragon”, whose message is “girls can do anything”. He is humble and unassuming and yet passionate and articulate. He has a strong vision for New Zealand as a place of talent where we develop and earn from our own intellectual property.
 For more about Richard read Sir Paul Callaghan’s (2011 New Zealander of the Year) interview with him in his book “Wool to Weta”. The man is a legend who shows us all how it can be done while remaining true to our Kiwi values.

Dame Suzie Moncrieff Nelson
Sculptor Suzie Moncrieff’s ingenious 1987 promotion of an art gallery in Nelson has grown to become one of the world’s most prestigious art and design competitions.

The World of Wearable Art™ is a theatrical spectacle for colour, music, dance and art that has migrated from walls to the moving human body. Each year this highlight of the New Zealand cultural calendar surprises amuses and astounds sell out audiences. It also promotes and showcases New Zealand to the world as a place of inspiration and creativity.

Suzie Moncrieff, the creative visionary and founder of this unique concept has dedicated the past 25 years to the realisation of her dream to make this an international arts competition celebrated right here in New Zealand. She has worked tirelessly to break down the barriers and make art accessible to all.

Alongside that she has focused on educating people on the importance of the quality of the work being ‘world class’ resulting in designers and artists from all around New Zealand and the globe entering. This combination of creativity and education has enhanced individuals self-belief and led them to create art works that have brought joy and inspiration to more than 250,000 people thought the world over the last 10 years.

The winner will be annoucnced on February 16th.

Apropos of celebrating success, the finalists in the New Zealand international business awards are:

Best Business Operating Internationally –Under $10m

ASPEQ (Wellington);  BioVittoria (Hamilton); Energy Mad (Christchurch); Escea  (Dunedin); Fastmount (Auckland).               

Best Business Operating Internationally – $10m-$50m

Altitude Aerospace Interiors  (Auckland); Canary Enterprises (Hamilton); EasiYo Products  (Auckland); Les Mills International  (Auckland); Trilogy Advanced Natural Skincare   (Wellington);  Triodent  (Katikati); Vista Entertainment Solutions             (Auckland).

Best Business Operating Internationally –Over $50m

BCS   (Auckland); Buckley Systems  (Auckland); Christchurch Engine Centre               (Christchurch); Downer NZ  (Tauranga); Orion Health (Auckland); Rakon (Auckland); SKOPE (Christchurch); Tait Electronics (Christchurch); Westland Milk Products (Hokitika)


Supported by the Ministry of Science and Innovation

Best Use of Research and Development in International Business

Downer NZ (Auckland); Energy Mad  (Christchurch); Seperex  (Dunedin); Technopak (Auckland); Westland Milk Products  (Hokitika).

Best Commercialisation of Intellectual Property in International Business

Burger Fuel  (Auckland); Everedge IP   (Auckland); Westland Milk Products (Hokitika)

Best Use of Design in International Business

ASPEQ  (Wellington); Canary Enterprises    (Hamilton); Energy Mad (Christchurch); Sistema Plastics (Auckland); Triodent  (Katikati).

Most Innovative Business Model in International Business

Burger Fuel  (Auckland); Energy Mad  (Christchurch); GMP Pharmaceuticals           (Auckland)

Winners will be announced on March 21st.

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